Friday, 14th April, 2023

We decided we would have a bit of a sleep-in today and didn't get going until about 9:30am. As mentioned yesterday, our accommodation did not live up to the name "Royal George" - its WiFi didn't work and the shower was cold! Also, when we arrived last night, the girl at reception said that our payment had been declined and we would need to pay. Without thinking too much, I did so. The cold light of day and a bit of thought and research led us to the conclusion that this was incorrect. The "declined" receipt had someone else's card number and we had a receipt from Fortunately, the lady at the reception knew straight away that we were right. She asked us to describe the person on reception last night. When we did so, she remarked, "Oh yes, she's ditzy. There's one in every bunch!" A win for us!

It rained all day today but that didn't really bother us as all our planned activities were indoors. It took a little over two hours to drive to Manchester and we made straight for the Cathedral.

The lectern was not the usual brass eagle.

The carvings on the choir stalls were great!

This and other similar carvings are located under the seats in the stalls. The seats fold up, revelaing the little ledge called a "misericord". These allowed the clergy to have somewhere to place their posterior during long sections of services while appearing to remain standing. The misericords at Manchester are considered to be very fine examples.

I had not seen organ pipes used as a reredos before this example.

This screen separates the nave from the quire.

A detail of the above screen

The top panel of the screen depicts angels as musicians.

One of the angels above

The ceiling of the nave is wooden. There are angels helping to hold up the ceiling and each one is playing an instrument.

I thought the pattern made by these stacked chairs was pretty amazing!

These embroidered images are on the kneelers in fron of one of the altars.

We wondered if these animals were kangaroos!

There were interesting carvings almost everywhere!

These tulips were in a garden in the grounds of the cathedral.

A pretty good photo, I thought!

Daffodils are everywhere but each one is beautiful and lifts one's spirits.

If you look carefully, you will see Satoshi standing to the left of the trunk of this tree, indicating its size.

Our next stop was the John Rylands Research Institute and Library. This is is a late-Victorian neo-Gothic building which opened to the public in 1900. It was founded by Enriqueta Augustina Rylands in memory of her husband, John Rylands. It now houses the majority of the Special Collections of The University of Manchester Library, the third largest academic library in the United Kingdom. We were told that it cost £240,000 to build at the time, a fortune. We were overawed by this bilding. It is truly maginficent.

This statue was the first thing seen by visitors to the library when it opened. It depicts science on the left and the arts on the right both being directed by theology in the centre.

The library was the first building in Manchester to be lit by electric lights and the light fittings are original. It was considered important to use electricity rather than gas to reduce the risk of fire.

A statue of Homer (not Simpson).

John Ryland made his money from cotton plantations. These days, it's considered to be "tainted" money because of the mistreatment of the cotton pickers.


Even the grates on the heaters were amazing!

As we walked around Manchester, we found several humorous signs.

Just as well I don't need to use my glasses outside (I only need them for reading!)

This sign was outside one of the (many) pubs.

In the evening we went to the Royal Exchange Theatre to see Tenessee Williams' play "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof". It was excellent.

The theatre is a removeable "pod" built inside the beautiful old Royal Exchange building.

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