In its earliest days, the Celtic Brigantes tribe had a stronghold on much of Northern England, including Manchester. After a Roman conquest Central Manchester was permanently sttled. During the 14th century a migration of Flemish weaves to the area took place and the Manchester cotton industry was born and the city really began to take off. In 1421 the Manchester Cathedral was built and the Chethem’s School of Music and Chethem’s Library were established.
By the time the Industrial Revolution rolled around, cotton had taken over in importance (over wool and cotton spinning saw a major boom. Manchester was the largest cotton marketplace in the world and was even called “Cottonopolis” for a spell. The city grew at a massive rate due to the Revolution and the city relished its new found glory. Around this time the city experienced it’s “golden age” and a new way of free thinking came about and much of the lively culture that is still around today was instituted then.
Because of its socialist past, Manchester has had its fair share of social unrest . During the World War’s many of the factories were turned over to the war. The Christmas Blitz saw hundreds killed and thousands of homes and businesses destroyed. In 1996 another series of attacks by the Irish Republican, known as the Provisional Irish Republican Army, let off large bombs that killed many people. A blessing in disguise, this final bout of violence pushed the city into action and since, it is has under gone an intense renovation to write itself as a center of business, tourism and culture (its main sources of income today).
Manchester sees a temperate maritime climate, typically with cool summers and mild winters. The city does experience rain year round but it is very light in contrast to other areas of the UK. Temperatures ranges from about 6.4C (43.5F) in January and 19.6C (67.3F) in July and August.
The city has things going on all year round and not one time is better than the other to visit. It is a very musically inclined place so many bars and pubs often have live bands all week long. Because of the constant mild temps it is easy to be outside and visit many of the major tourist attractions too.
By Air: The Manchester Airport hosts nearly 100 airlines to over 200 destinations worldwide. There is also a train that runs every 15 minutes into the Piccadilly station in 20 minutes or less. A taxi ride to the city centre is also less than £20.
By Train: Nearly all of the cities in the UK offer service to Manchester. Virgin Trains have rides from Manchester and London in less than 2 hours.
By Car: The ring road in Manchester connects to all motorways from all directions. Visit Multimap to figure out your perfect route into Manchester.
Board: The tram service is the best way to get around Manchester. Titled Metrolink, it runs to through city centre, to the major train stations, and tourist attractions. There is also a free city centre bus, called Metroshuttle that operates from 7:00am – 7:00pm Monday through Saturday and 10:00am – 6:00pm on Sunday’s. It takes travelers to car parks, stations, tram shops, and major attractions in the heart of Manchester.
Ride: There are black taxi cabs throughout the city centre which can also be booked by Mantax for a low cost.