Monday, 23 January 2012

The past set to come alive for Manchester's History festival

A digital treasure hunt, a rock and roll walking tour, the original plans for the Mancunian Way, a family vintage bike ride, community archeology projects, a football pub walk and the city heliport that never was are just some of over 80 events that are jostling to reinvigorate public perceptions of history as Manchester launches its second history festival next month.

The ten-day festival promises a challenging new approach to the familiar and lesser explored histories of the region.

The festival promises a journey from anarchic 19th century street gangs with brass-tipped clogs and soaped-down fringes to Turing’s work on the Enigma Code. Saturday 3 March is Celebration Day and provides a focus for the second Manchester Histories Festival. Spend the day immersed in the history of Greater Manchester at Manchester Town Hall, Friends’ Meeting House and at venues across the city.

Other highlights of the festival, which is a partnership between University of Manchester, Manchester MetropolitanUniversity and Renaissance North West, include the chance to climb 280ft to the top of Manchester Town Hall’s 134-year-old clock tower, a family cycle ride alongside penny farthing and other vintage cycles and a debate about the overseas ownership of the city’s two football clubs featuring Gary James, author of ‘Manchester A Football History’, Andy Walsh from FC United and Dave Wallace, former MCFC fan-on-the-board.

Claire Turner, festival director, said: “Manchester Histories Festival brings a new, radical approach to exploring history and is not afraid to use cutting edge technologies to engage people of all ages and historical experience, from school pupils and college students to family history enthusiasts and museum curators."

The first Community History Awards, chaired by BBC’s Ranvir Singh, will recognise and reward successful partnerships exploring Greater Manchester history between schools and community groups and an archive, gallery, library, museum or university.

o see the whole programme, visit:

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