In 1894, Queen Victoria opened the canal linking Manchester to the world through the Mersey Estuary and the Irish Sea. It had been constructed in just 6 years, involved some 16000 men, and was considered a major construction project, covering some 55 kilometres. Its completion resulted in expansion of industry and commerce in the entire area. With the advent of container shipping in the 1970s, however, ships simply became too big to be able to enter the harbour. Consequently, the docks were finally closed in 1982. A new destination of this area had to be found; it would be transformed into the Salford Quays.
From the middle of the 1980s, the whole area was changed. The docks and all buildings related to it, were demolished, the water quality improved, and plans for the area developed and put into place. Salford Quays was to become an area with offices, entertainment and shopping areas as well as residential areas. Located right on the waterfront, and linked to Manchester by tramway, it has now become a destination for visitors, too. Walking around in this area, visiting musea, galleries and shops, having something to eat at one of the many restaurants, it is all possible at Salford Quays.
When I arrived at the northern side, I crossed the brightly coloured Detroit Bridge to reach the Lowry, the main entertainment area with galleries, restaurants, cinema and more. Besides this, the building is an attraction in its own right. Crossing the futuristic footbridge, I reached the other side of the Manchester Ship Canal. Here, you have a great view over the Salford Quays area, and you can also visit the Imperial War Museum North, a war museum - a sight in itself from the outside, designed by Libeskind. Crossing the bridge once again, I walked on in the residential area, with canals, trees, and bridges - a new and attractive area to live, or so it seemed. On the other side of the water, you can see the stadion of Manchester United. In just 15 minutes, I was back in Manchester.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Salford Quays (United Kingdom). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Salford Quays. Read more about this site.