Northern Soul

Architecture

Jesmond Dene House

Jesmond Dene: a grand house, a hotel and a host of memories

April 27, 2015 Comments Off on Jesmond Dene: a grand house, a hotel and a host of memories

As a student in Newcastle in the early 1990s, one of my favourite things was meeting my Gran in Jesmond Dene.

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From grain to grand dining: the rebirth of Manchester’s Corn Exchange

March 6, 2015 Comments Off on From grain to grand dining: the rebirth of Manchester’s Corn Exchange

There’s a small, dark space in the bowels of Manchester’s Corn Exchange called ‘The Dead Room’. Rumoured to be the spot where two druid lines intersect, it’s an unnerving place, not least because it’s permanently ice-cold and pitch-black.

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Greengate Baths

Historic Greengate Baths in Salford: on the risk list

February 13, 2015 Comments Off on Historic Greengate Baths in Salford: on the risk list

As 2014 drew to a close, The Victorian Society released its list of the top ten most endangered buildings in England and Wales. Included on this was the Grade II* listed Greengate Baths in Salford.

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Manchester Town Hall

Review: Manchester by Phil Griffin and Jan Chlebik

January 19, 2015 Comments Off on Review: Manchester by Phil Griffin and Jan Chlebik

Phil Griffin was my favourite City Life writer – that Manchester magazine, when it was a magazine, was the first place I came across his elegant and highly personal architectural prose.

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Picture of the architectural model taken by Alfred Searls

Liverpool: The Cathedral That Never Was

January 17, 2015 Comments Off on Liverpool: The Cathedral That Never Was

The thought of what might have been exerts a powerful hold on the imagination. To support our boundless appetite for the game of ‘what if’ we build elaborate castles in the air; castles erected purely on foundations of conjecture, and constructed from materials found in our minds.

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Robinson's, by Caroline Johnson

Caroline Johnson: Northern Routes

December 11, 2014 Comments Off on Caroline Johnson: Northern Routes

Over the weekend I spent an hour in a regional art gallery I hadn’t visited before that turned out to be a bit of a gem.

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Chetham's Library, Manchester by Chris Payne

Chetham’s Library: a medieval gem in a modern city

November 16, 2014 Comments Off on Chetham’s Library: a medieval gem in a modern city

Manchester city centre evolves at such a rate of knots these days, it’s entirely possible to feel disorientated if you’ve been away for a fortnight. So there’s something rather reassuring about the knowledge that parts of it haven’t changed for a long time.

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Ancoats Dispensary

The Ancoats Dispensary is on the mend

August 25, 2014 Comments Off on The Ancoats Dispensary is on the mend

Over the last century, Ancoats in Manchester has seen a period of massive change. Victorian mills, where many toiled to make ends meet, are now expensive apartment blocks. But one building which stood firm in the face of this gentrification has been under threat.

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Grassington House

Grassington House Hotel: a haven in the Yorkshire Dales

August 6, 2014 Comments Off on Grassington House Hotel: a haven in the Yorkshire Dales

When John and Sue Rudden took on a three storey Georgian residence in North Yorkshire they had little idea that the next few years would be some of the toughest they had ever known.

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Liverpool Everyman (c) Philip Vile

Everyman: Liverpool’s Third Cathedral

May 7, 2014 Comments Off on Everyman: Liverpool’s Third Cathedral

I lived in Liverpool briefly in 2005 after failing to become a success in London.

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