Platform. The everyday portal for sharing knowledge and intelligence on sustainability across Greater Manchester.


“In the Northern Quarter, and across the city on Quay Street and Water Street, you may trace earlier Manchester, man and boat.”

“Look around. Make the invisible visible. There are pensioners’ luncheon clubs up narrow stairs.”

“No Amsterdam canal this. Not much of a canal at all. Narrow, slick, black as molasses, reflecting the canyon it passes through.”

“We didn’t know we were part of a city revival. And that city revival could be bars and clubs, lofts, apartments (never flats), Italian lunch, Thai curry, sushi and noodles, Japanese beer, Barcelona chairs, down-lighters, lounge-kitchens, entry-phones, balconies, pavement tables, Sol with lime in the neck, Caesar salad, kids unlimited.”

“And where there is no night, there are no wolves, except the ones that use the shadows for cover.”

"She jumps over the door of his E-Type. He drives down the spiral ramp and off into the Manchester streets to pulsing brass and percussion by the Sid Lawrence Orchestra."

"When we were thin and full of beer, barrelling down Swan Street to the Band on the Wall, or grinding out the last Marlboro in Champers, we didn't know we were part of the night-time economy."

There are bulrushes on a rooftop in Tasle Alley, just off Albert Square. You can see them as you cross Mulberry Street, towards St Mary's church. It is the roof of a small electricity sub-station. Hard to see who might have planted them, if anybody did. Perhaps this wetland plant chose Manchester...


MANCHESTER by photographer Jan Chlebik and writer Phil Griffin is a collaboration by two people who have lived in Manchester many years. It is not a guidebook, nor memoir. It is, perhaps, more a manual for people who, like them, will always use the city and take great pleasure from it.

Manchester city centre has undergone many changes over the last three or four decades, Jan and Phil went along with them, recorded some, commented on others. In their book they recall and represent many of these things, and wilfully resist any attempts to make sense of it all.

MANCHESTER is available at ferrious, Cornerhouse, Portico Library, Oi Polloi and through Mancunian Books.