Portal:Greater Manchester

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The Greater Manchester Portal

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Greater Manchester is a metropolitan county in North West England, with a population of 2.68 million. It encompasses one of the largest metropolitan areas in the United Kingdom and comprises ten metropolitan boroughs: Bolton, Bury, Oldham, Rochdale, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, Wigan, and the cities of Manchester and Salford. Greater Manchester was created on 1 April 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972.

Greater Manchester spans 493 square miles (1,277 km2). It is landlocked and borders Cheshire (to the south-west and south), Derbyshire (to the south-east), West Yorkshire (to the north-east), Lancashire (to the north) and Merseyside (to the west). There is a mix of high-density urban areas, suburbs, semi-rural and rural locations in Greater Manchester, but land use is mostly urban. It has a focused central business district, formed by Manchester city centre and the adjoining parts of Salford and Trafford, but Greater Manchester is also a polycentric county with ten metropolitan districts, each of which has at least one major town centre and outlying suburbs. The Greater Manchester Urban Area is the third most populous conurbation in the UK, and spans across most of the county's territory.

For the 12 years following 1974 the county had a two-tier system of local government; district councils shared power with the Greater Manchester County Council. The county council was abolished in 1986, and so its districts (the metropolitan boroughs) effectively became unitary authority areas. However, the metropolitan county has continued to exist in law and as a geographic frame of reference, and as a ceremonial county, has a Lord Lieutenant and a High Sheriff. Several county-wide services were co-ordinated through the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities up until April 2011, when the Greater Manchester Combined Authority was established as the strategic county-wide authority for Greater Manchester, taking on functions and responsibilities for economic development, regeneration and transport.

Selected article

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The tallest buildings and structures in Salford are mostly residential tower blocks constructed during the mid-20th century in the Brutalist architectural style. However, since the 1996 Manchester bombing, which initiated a redevelopment programme for Greater Manchester, the city has witnessed a boom in the construction of high rise apartments, particularly at Salford Quays, a former dockland.

Geographically, commercially, and culturally, Salford is dominated by its immediate neighbour, the City of Manchester, which lies across the River Irwell. Although Salford followed a similar pattern of urbanisation to Manchester during the Industrial Revolution it did not evolve as a commercial centre in the same way. In contrast to the vast majority of Manchester's tallest buildings, Salford's high-rises were constructed in the 1960s and 70s as part of a regeneration project to alleviate chronic social deprivation and urban decay. Some of the early high-rise buildings have subsequently been demolished themselves, as they provided unsatisfactory accommodation for families and caused as many social problems as they were meant to alleviate. A study by Professor Christopher Collier of the university suggested that Manchester's drizzly climate is largely due to the multitude of high-rise blocks in Salford.

Selected biography

Joy Division were an English rock band formed in 1976 in Salford, Greater Manchester. Originally named Warsaw, the band primarily consisted of Ian Curtis, Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook and Stephen Morris.

Joy Division rapidly evolved from their initial punk rock influences, to develop a sound and style that pioneered the post-punk movement of the late 1970s. According to music critic Jon Savage, the band "were not punk but were directly inspired by its energy." Their self-released 1978 debut EP, An Ideal for Living, caught the attention of the Manchester television personality Tony Wilson. Joy Division's debut album, Unknown Pleasures, was released in 1979 on Wilson's independent record label Factory Records, and drew critical acclaim from the British press. Despite the band's growing success, vocalist Ian Curtis was beset with depression and personal difficulties, including a dissolving marriage and his diagnosis with epilepsy.

In May 1980, on the eve of the band's first American tour, Curtis, overwhelmed with depression, committed suicide. Joy Division's posthumously released second album, Closer (1980), and the single "Love Will Tear Us Apart" became the band's highest charting releases. After the death of Curtis, the remaining members reformed as New Order, achieving critical and commercial success.

Selected picture

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A cold morning at Castleton railway station, Rochdale.

Photo credit: Ingy the Wingy

Boroughs

Greater Manchester in the news

  • August 6: Wayne Rooney likely to miss opening match of English Premier League
  • July 10: UK mathematician Nick Higham wins Fröhlich Prize
  • June 29: Bobby Charlton launches anti-landmine campaign

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Categories

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Topics

Cities and major towns: AltrinchamAshton-under-LyneBoltonManchesterOldhamRochdaleSalfordStalybridgeStockportStretfordWigan

Culture: Bands from ManchesterGay VillageThe HalléMadchesterThe LowryManchester Art GalleryManchester City F.CManchester International FestivalManchester United F.C.Music of ManchesterRoyal Exchange Theatre

Education: List of SchoolsManchester Metropolitan UniversityRoyal Northern College of MusicUniversity of BoltonUniversity of ManchesterUniversity of Salford

History: MamuciumHundred of SalfordPeterloo MassacreCottonopolisManchester BlitzMunich air disasterRedcliffe-Maud Report1996 Manchester bombingXVII Commonwealth GamesHistory of Manchester

People: People from BoltonPeople from ManchesterPeople from OldhamPeople from Stockport

Governance: Civil parishes in Greater ManchesterConstituencies in Greater ManchesterGreater Manchester County CouncilHigh Sheriff of Greater ManchesterPolitics in Manchester

Featured Content

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Featured articles: AltrinchamBert TrautmannChat MossCity of Manchester StadiumDuncan EdwardsEmmeline PankhurstGreater ManchesterJoy DivisionM62 motorwayManchesterManchester, Bolton and Bury CanalManchester City F.C.Manchester Small-Scale Experimental MachinePeterloo MassacreOldhamScout Moor Wind FarmShaw and CromptonStretfordTrafford

Featured lists: Castles in Greater ManchesterGrade I listed buildings in Greater ManchesterList of Manchester City F.C. managersList of Manchester United F.C. managersList of Manchester United F.C. records and statisticsList of Manchester United F.C. seasonsList of Manchester United F.C. playersList of Manchester United F.C. players (25–99 appearances)List of Manchester United F.C. players (fewer than 25 appearances)List of railway stations in Greater ManchesterList of Sites of Special Scientific Interest in Greater ManchesterList of tallest buildings and structures in ManchesterList of tallest buildings and structures in SalfordManchester City F.C. seasons

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Good articles: 1990 Strangeways Prison riotAlan TuringAshton-under-LyneB of the BangBank Street (stadium)Bridgewater CanalBuckton CastleCastleshaw Roman fortChaddertonCine City, WithingtonCity of SalfordControversy over the usage of Manchester Cathedral in Resistance: Fall of ManDavid BeckhamDidsburyDunham MasseyHale BarnsHenry Taylor (swimmer)Hugh MasonHulme Arch BridgeHyde RoadMamuciumManchester and Bolton RailwayManchester LinersManchester MummyManchester Small-Scale Experimental MachineManchester United F.C.MilnrowMurrays' MillsNico DitchNoel GallagherNorth Road (stadium)Ordsall HallOld TraffordOasis (band)Radcliffe, Greater ManchesterRiver IrwellRonnie WallworkRoytonSale, Greater ManchesterTamesideTrafford ParkUpper Brook Street Chapel, ManchesterUrmstonWarburton, Greater Manchester

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