100 Shops – A History of Manchester

Welcome to 100 Manchester Shops …

The Idea

Taking a job at Manchester Metropolitan University led Professor Jon Stobart back to the city for the first time in many years. He was struck by how much had changed. Given his long-standing interest in retail history, exploring some of these changes through a study of the shops and shopping streets of Greater Manchester seemed an obvious and interesting way to re-familiarise himself with the city and its various boroughs.

But, rather than simply writing his own history of Manchester shops, he felt it would be more revealing and fulfilling to ask the people of Greater Manchester to write their histories, which is what this project and website are all about …

The Project

Why 100 Shops? The idea is based on Neil MacGregor’s History of the World in 100 Objects (2010), which tells a global history on the basis of objects held at the British Museum. We wanted to create something similar in Manchester: a history of the city built up from numerous smaller parts that held significance for Greater Manchester and its people.

This is a collective piece of work: We would like people to ‘nominate’ a shop that they feel is important – maybe to the development of Manchester, to a particular borough or community, or to them personally. The shops might be large high street stores or corner shops; places that are still trading or that disappeared decades ago; famous landmarks or forgotten treasures. The key thing is that people see them as important in some way.

Not only will your memories make it onto our interactive map, we will also be staging a 100 Manchester Shops exhibition at Manchester Central Library in spring 2019.

Get Involved

You can nominate a shop by clicking the button below. Simply tell us its name and address, something about its history and why it is important to you. You can also include a picture if you like. We’ll then put the best 100 of them onto the interactive map so that everyone can share memories and find out more about Manchester’s shops, past and present.

You can also leave comments on shops that have already been placed on the map, adding your own memories, information or photographs, and providing an extra layer onto the history of shops across Greater Manchester.

Our Latest Shops

Pennington’s, toys and bikes, Stretford

Nominated by: Linda Dutton Where: Chester Road, Streford   Pennington’s sold toys and bikes from its shop on Chester Road in Stretford in the 1950s and early 1960s.   Linda remembers: Being taken there in 1959 to 1963 about late November early December to...

Quarmby’s, toyshop and stationers, Chorlton-cum-Hardy

  Nominated by: Janet Phillips Where: Wilbraham Road, Chorlton-cum-Hardy (the picture shows other shops on Wilbraham Road)   Quarmby’s was a stationer’s (downstairs) and toy shop (upstairs) on Wilbraham Road. The latter was the big attraction for many, with...

Granelli’s Ice-Cream

Nominated by: Rose Copas Where: Oldham Street, Ancoats, Manchester (the picture shows Oldhamd Street in the 1960s)   Granelli’s was one of a number of Italian ice cream businesses operating in Ancoats. Many could trace their roots back to the late nineteenth...

Silvana

Nominated by: Nicky Iqbal Where: Ancoats, Manchester Silvana was established by John Simon, who had arrived in Manchester from Germany in 1933 and established the Phoenix Mill in Ancoats in 1937. The company sold direct to the public, a business created in 1954 when...

Kendal Milne & Co (House of Fraser)

Nominated by: Barry Shaw Where: Deansgate, Manchester Kendal, Milne & Co can lay claim to being the oldest department store in the country. They trace their origins to a bazaar opened on Deansgate in 1832, bought-up and converted into a drapery emporium by three...

Danby’s, Leigh

Market Street, Leigh - Danby's is on the left (Source: https://leigh.life/index.php?action=media;sa=item;in=31475)   Nominated by: Anne Ring Where: Market Street, Leigh Danby’s was a drapers, trading in Leigh from at least 1857 and was still going into the 1970s....

Hilton’s butchers, Tyldesley

Elliott Street, Tyldesley (Source: https://www.francisfrith.com/tyldesley/tyldesley-elliott-street-1950_t145004)   Nominated by: Anne Reece Where: Elliott Street, Tyldesley Hilton's was a traditional butchers trading for many years on Elliott Street in Tyldesley....

George Mason’s

Bradshawgate, Leigh, (Source: https://www.leighjournal.co.uk/news/15778381.photography-fanatic-transports-people-back-in-time-for-eighth-year-with-vintage-snaps-of-leigh/)   Nominated by: Brian Fairhurst Where: Bradshawgate, Leigh George Mason's was a traditional...

Crowther’s

Nominated by: Jane Where: 39 South King Street Crowther's appears to have been trading for a relatively short period on South King Street: it appears on Goad maps in 1969, but had gone by 1973. It sold a range of clothes, being particularly associated with the mod...

The Bacca Shop, Atherton

Bacca Shop, Atherton, c.1910 (Source: Tom McGrath)   Nomtinated by: Diane Shallcross Where: 2 Bolton Road, Atherton The shop dates back to at least the late 1870s but may be earlier. It was originally listed on High Street but this later became 2 Bolton Old Road....