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Grim reality of Manchester’s forgotten slums revealed in new report and photos

There’s a dark history…

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A new project from University of Manchester has repaired, photographed and shared forgotten maps of Manchester’s slums.

We might have our complaints about the city centre (in particular Piccadilly Gardens) now but it’s not a patch on how disgusting the city was in the Industrial Revolution.

With factories opening, thousands of people flocked to the city for work and to live in the working-class slums.

Those slums were primarily in Salford and Hulme, but there were also large ones in Pendleton and Chorlton. Two thirds of Ardwick and certain small areas of Cheetham Hill and Broughton were also slums.

Credit: The University of Manchester Library / CC

The most famous slum from the time though is around the Red Bank area of the city, including what we now know as the Green Quarter and Angel Meadows.

Throughout the Industrial Revolution Manchester was described as “the vilest and most dangerous slum of the Industrial Revolution” in Frederick Engels book ‘The Condition of the Working-Class in England 1844’.

The new maps and reports from the University of Manchester go a long way into proving what Engels described as the truth.

The new found reports provide grim and detailed statistical records of the cause of death, occupation age and sex of individuals within each district along with their address and date of death.

The maps were bound into reports by the city’s Medical Office of Health at the time.

Credit: Manchester Archive

The ‘Report on the Health of the City of Manchester, 1880’ shows that the death rate for 1877 stood at a huge 27.79%. This figure is massive when you consider the highest death rate in the world for 2018 was 17.23% in South Africa.

The main causes of death were respiratory related including ‘Diseases of the Lungs’ and ‘Whooping Cough’ due to the high air pollution and terrible housing for the extreme winters.

Adding to this were exceptionally high levels of mortality due to typhus, typhoid and diarrhea due to “a degree of dirt and revolting filth, the like of which is not to be found elsewhere.”

Credit: The University of Manchester Library / CC

At the time, Engels description of the area said: “the shameful lay-out of the Old Town has made it impossible for the wretched inhabitants to enjoy cleanliness, fresh air, and good health.

“And such a district of at least twenty to thirty thousand inhabitants lies in the very centre of the second city in the most important factory town in the world.”

The new maps bridge an almost 50-year gap between found surveys in the 1850s and the later 1904 housing map of Manchester and Salford by campaigner Thomas R. Marr.

The maps are an entirely unique sanitary survey for Manchester and include ‘a valuable resource for researchers to better understand the social conditions of the city in the late 1800s’.

Credit: Manchester Archives, 1897.

The newly discovered maps and reports not only highlight the massive and disgusting social inequalities of the time but demonstrate how the issue was largely ignored by the wealthy, to maintain the wealth in the hands of a limited few, as was the case throughout the industrialised world.

The political uprisings throughout Europe at the beginning of the 20th Century saw changes for the better, at least in the first world.

The digitalised maps and reports are available to view here.

Feature

Artist creates haunting post-apocalyptic images of Manchester

This is so spooky…

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James Chadderton Art

We’ve probably never been as close to an actual ‘apocalypse’ than this shoddy year…

James Chadderton is a British mixed-media artist who works consistently on creating apocalyptic landscapes.

They often show nightmare-inducing scenes of cityscapes that blend the line between reality and fiction.

James takes inspiration from dystopian films and video games, drawing the viewer into a crazy alternative reality. 

James Chadderton Art
James Chadderton Art

Using famous Manchester landmark he turns the urban landscapes into haunting post-apocalyptic scenes. 

Not only does it give us an insight into what the world might look like after an apocalypse, it gives you the chance to let your imagination run wild and wonder how and why. 

James’ portfolio includes work for Manchester legend Peter Hook, who he designed the cover of his EP 1101/2011 for. He’s also even worked with EA on the Battlefield franchise. 

His work has been displayed up and down the country but now you can have it in your very own home. 

James Chadderton Art
James Chadderton Art

He’s also done images of London, Liverpool and even the iconic Blackpool tower. 

You can see more images here and even buy one for your house! 

 

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Feature

What the stars of legendary ’90s show Gladiators are up to these days

Including prison, drugs and religion.

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gldiatorstv/Instagram

It’s been 20 years since the hit ’90s show Gladiators graced our screens for the last time, but where are all the muscly stars now?

The fun-filled show was packed with dramatic battles, HUUUUGE muscles and too-tight lycra.

Let’s begin with Michael Ahearne, aka Warrior, who started life as a junior England rugby player before joining the hit show and earning up to £100,000 a year. 

In 1998 Ahearne was sent to prison for perverting the course of justice in a famous firearms case involved Phillip Glennon Jnr, an associate of former international cocaine baron Curtis ‘Cocky’ Warren. He was found guilty, and Ahearne served six months of his 15-month sentence.

Then in 2018, he was subject to a police raid of his home in the Wirral where officers uncovered a stash of anabolic steroids. He was arrested on suspicion of possessing Class C drugs with intent to supply but wasn’t charged in the end – however, Ahearne was charged for possessing CS spray and received a six month sentence suspended for 12 months.

Sharron Davies, otherwise known as Amazon, was a successful swimmer before the show, even winning a silver medal at the Moscow Olympics in 1980. She’s now a TV presenter.  

Mike Van Wijk, aka Wolf, was one of the most popular Gladiators, starring on the show for seven years in which time he became the main villain.

He’s now 67 and in the ‘best shape of his life’ with arms bigger than my head – he lives in New Zealand and owns his own business called Wolf’s Gym. This year, he announced on Lorraine that he’s begging producers to bring the show back. 

Diane Youdale, or Jet on the show, bowed out of the programme after four seasons due to a neck injury. She’s now a psychotherapist and pilates instructor. 

James ‘Hunter’ Crossley started on the show when he was just 19, and ended up secretly dating the show’s presenter Ulrika Jonsson between 1996 and 1997. Since Gladiators ended he spent years pursuing an acting career, but has consistently kept up with fitness. He’s now a personal trainer. 

Kim Betts, aka Lightning, was one of the toughest Gladiators. After bowing out of the Gladiator ring she took to property development and also has her own beauty parlour. She has maintained her physique and regularly posts gym photos on social media. 

Michael Wilson, known as Cobra, struggled with drink while on the show and by his own admission was sometimes ‘bleeding drunk’ while on the show. He admitted last year to press that he ‘didn’t take it too seriously’, adding: “There were end of show parties, when we had international Gladiators come over, we would be up all night boozing.”

Now, he is a motivational speaker attending schools and clubs up and down the country. He suffered with pneumonia last year and became seriously ill, blaming the tough workouts on the show for it. 

Jefferson ‘Shadow’ Kin found himself at the centre of a drug scandal in 1995. At the time he said: “There is no excuse for cheating. I was mixing with drugs before Gladiators and when I was tested during the show there were no traces of cocaine but they found steroids.”

He spent the best part of 20 years battling with drug addiction. He got clean and now works in a rehabilitation centre helping others with drug issues. 

Mark Smith, aka Rhino’, has made multiple TV appearances including a stint on EastEnders and in shows such as Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, and NCIS: Los Angeles.

Warren Furman, known as Ace, became most well-known for his two-year engagement to Katie Price – who was then known as Jordan – before they broke up in 1999. However, he turned his back on show business, found god and now lives in York with his wife and two kids. 

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Inside the Wigan home ‘frozen in the 1970s’ that’s on the market for the first time ever

This is ICONIC!

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Regan and Hallworth

If you love the ’70s you’ll love this house that is going on the market for the first time, which will transport you to the decade of platforms, flares and shag pile carpet. 

The family home in Wigan is thought to be going on the market for the first time ever, but inside is a ’70s lover’s dream.

Throughout the entire house is décor from the decade, including a retro orange sofa, plenty of frosted glass and shag carpets of course. 

It’s three bedroom and is tucked away in Parbold on Croasdale Drive.

Regan and Hallworth
Regan and Hallworth

Estate Agent Regan and Hallworth say that ‘despite requiring extensive modernisation’ the house ‘has an undeniably timeless appeal’.

You’ll also find teak wood storage units in just about every room, and plenty of earth-toned accessories throughout. 

Regan and Hallworth

There’s a huge copper fire place in the living room complimented by dark brown walls and a patterned ceiling. 

The kitchen is covered with white cabinets with a wood trim, an unusual corner sink situation, plus a fitted microwave on the lower half of the cabinets. 

Regan and Hallworth
Regan and Hallworth

The bathroom is covered in dark marble tiles and a frosted window above the bath, complimented by gold furnishing and trims on both the toilet and sink – plus a gold shower! 

For all the quirky features the house is actually surprisingly minimalist, it’s bright and has a big open plan living room. 

Regan and Hallworth

It’s also been designed with an upside-down layout meaning the bedrooms are on the ground floor while the living room is on the second floor, taking advantage of the views over the trees. 

The house is located on a leafy lane and features a glass-front, extensive driveway space with a double garage and plenty of greenery to enjoy from your orange sofa.

Regan and Hallworth
Regan and Hallworth

Regan and Hallworth add: “We don’t believe that ‘Beech Hill’ has ever been on the open market before and offers an incredibly rare opportunity for a wide range of buyers to purchase a home of true distinction with tons of potential without having to pay the huge premium you normally expect to pay to live in one of West Lancashire’s most sought after locations.

“Available with the added benefit of no upward chain, early viewing is highly recommended.”

Offers are in excess of £400,000. Find out more info here

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