“So many of the ideas that continue to shape our world first found their voice in Manchester. Alongside the Satanic mills and booming factories, here was where traditions crumbled, urban life was pioneered, and originality thrived. Here was where the modern was born.”
Dr Tristram Hunt, Historian
Original modern city
Located in the northwest of England and with a city-region population of 2.6 million, Manchester houses many of the UK’s top companies and is an international destination with a visitor infrastructure to rival many others across Europe and around the world.
Manchester has always been ahead of its time and is renowned for innovation and enterprise. It is a city of firsts, driven by people who produce results and get things done. There was a phrase coined in Victorian times, ‘What Manchester does today, the world does tomorrow’, and with just cause.
Manchester was the first city of the industrial revolution, sparking a new way of doing things that literally changed the world. Manchester remains a city of invention and innovation; over
the generations the firsts kept coming - the first ever professional football league, the first programmable computer, the first test tube baby.
Still today, there is always something happening - the Manchester International Festival, the reinvention and redevelopment of Oxford Road as the Corridor, the move North of the BBC. Manchester is a city that is always looking for the next adventure, embarking on new journeys.
The city is known for challenging the norm, for applying radical ideas to regular issues. The same is true of our approach to business tourism. We don’t want to simply host conferences and events, but to immerse them in the city and connect them to the wider world.
Manchester is home to a diverse population. In 2008, there were 166 languages spoken and people settle here from as far and wide as Poland, Jamaica, India and China. It is this mix of old and new, of youth and experience that make Manchester as culturally diverse as it is.
The city has a rich and diverse cultural offer and has worked hard to achieve its full potential, delivering an array of visitor attractions and unique events for all the family. Thanks in no small part to the benefaction of our Victorian forefathers; Manchester is particularly rich in cultural assets.
Culture has also played an integral part in the city’s contemporary renaissance - from the creation of dance music and innovative digital industries to the interplay of innovation, radical thought and independence that once shaped the Industrial Revolution.
“I feel close to the rebelliousness and vigour of the youth here. Perhaps time will separate us, but nobody can deny that here, behind the windows of Manchester, there is an insane love of football, of celebration and of music."
Exploration of urban life
Salford Quays, the Northern Quarter, Chinatown, Castlefield, the Millennium Quarter, Piccadilly, the Gay Village and Spinningfields. With such separate and distinct areas, a stroll around Manchester is an exploration of urban life. All of these quarters have their own characteristic public spaces - often home to special events and cultural celebrations.
Manchester has a compact and accessible city centre. Most areas are within walking distance of each other, or if you want to save your legs, just hop onto the Metrolink, or jump aboard the free Metroshuttle bus.
Manchester is easy to get to know and the city soon feels like home. Wherever you choose to go, the streets and squares fizz with life. With so much at street level, including some of the best shopping in the UK, it's easy to be distracted, but don't forget to look up. The architectural splendour of Manchester's Victorian past and the glamour of its glass, steel and aluminium future are all above eye level. Each building has a story to tell.
Alternatively, a short tram journey to the Quays, Manchester's dynamic waterfront destination, provides shopping, sport, art, theatre, museums and world-class architecture all packed into one spectacular square mile. Here you will also find the Imperial War Museum North and the Lowry, a unique arts and entertainment venue. Sports fans can visit Old Trafford, the home of Manchester United, which offers both museum and stadium tours.
More than anything else, Manchester is about people. Mancunians have made an enormous contribution to all aspects of British life, be it architecture, music, sport, literature, politics and anything else you care to mention. But more than the great and the good, the ordinary people of Manchester make the place what it is.