FIFTY FIVE MINUTE RIDE…
I cycled on towards Throstle Nest bridge. In a deep cutting to my left were a number of railway lines and on my immediate right of course was the thick dark green water of the Bridgewater Canal. Beyond the canal the Metrolink trams run on a newly constructed overhead track to Salford Quays and on to the place where the Eccles cakes come from. Just before you reach Throstle Nest Bridge at White City you have to go past the overhead tram stop at Pomona. The tow-path on the south side of the canal which I had been cycling on since Castlefield Quays runs out here and you have to cross the canal by an ancient horse bridge. A quick glance at my watch told me it had taken me twenty five minutes to reach this point. I crossed over but came off the canal here and then crossed the Manchester Ship Canal at Trafford Road swing bridge. (The swing bridge is now welded permanently shut, so big ships can no longer reach Pomona Docks even if they wanted to.)
BRIDGE OVER THE RIVER IRWELL
It's a strange place, if you look eastwards from Woden Street footbridge up the Irwell you can see the Manchester skyline in the distance and in the foreground the many new apartment blocks of the St.Georges Island development come into view. Looking westwards down the Ship Canal you can see Salford Quays and the Old Trafford football ground in the distance. In the foreground to your left is the giant brownfield site of the former Pomona Docks. On your right hand side, which is the Salford bank, a number of tacky warehouses and small manufacturing units litter the space between the Ship Canal and Ordsall Lane. What a waste of space this whole area has become.
Here are some facts and figures from my
Fifty five minute ride…
Dry Rot is the title of one of Nicola Batty's novels.
The Bridgewater Canal is the oldest proper canal in Britain.
Ziggy is the name of Nicola Batty's wheelchair.
Nic's Doctor is at City Road Surgery Hulme.
The Hulme Arch spans Princess Road.
The Mancunian Way, A57(M) is the Manchester inner relief route.
Castlefield Basin, originally Junction, is also known as Castlefield Quays.
The Venetian Church, was built as The Congregational chapel in 1853.
Pomona Lock, Bridgewater Canal - Ship Canal.
Pomona Docks, Originally (part of) Manchester Docks, now derelict, on the Manchester Ship Canal.
Royce Road, where the first Rolls Royce car was built.
G-MEX, Greater Manchester Exhibition Centre, formerly Manchester's Central Railway Station.
Artie's Barbershop is on Claremont Road, Moss Side.
Moss Lane, Is the home of Hydes Brewery, they now also brew Boddingtons Cask.
Venice has nearly as many miles of canal as Birmingham.
Birmingham, unlike Manchester, doesn't have a Ship Canal, yet!
Metrolink, Manchester's tram system.
Horse bridge. Bridge to allow barge-pulling horses, access to the opposite towpath.