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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 2.55 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 Salford and Manchester. Greater Manchester was created on 1 April 1974 as a result of the Local Government Act 1972.

Greater Manchester is landlocked and borders Cheshire (to the south-west and south), Derbyshire (to the south-east), West Yorkshire (to the north-east) and Lancashire (to the north). The Greater Manchester Urban Area is the third most populous conurbation in the UK, and spans across most of the county's territory. As a ceremonial county, Greater Manchester has a Lord Lieutenant and a High Sheriff.

Greater Manchester County Council was abolished in 1986, and so its districts (the metropolitan boroughs) are now effectively unitary authority areas; however, the metropolitan county, which is some 496 square miles (1,285 km2), continues to exist in law and as a geographic frame of reference, though several county-wide services are co-ordinated through the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities.

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The Peterloo Massacre (or Battle of Peterloo) occurred at St Peter's Field, Manchester, England, on 16 August 1819, when cavalry charged into a crowd of 60–80,000 gathered at a meeting to demand the reform of parliamentary representation.

The end of the Napoleonic Wars in 1815 had resulted in periods of famine and chronic unemployment, exacerbated by the introduction of the first of the Corn Laws. By the beginning of 1819 the pressure generated by poor economic conditions, coupled with the lack of suffrage in northern England, had enhanced the appeal of political Radicalism. In response, the Manchester Patriotic Union, a group agitating for parliamentary reform, organised a demonstration to be addressed by the well-known radical orator Henry Hunt.

Shortly after the meeting began, local magistrates called on the military to arrest Hunt and several others on the hustings with him, and to disperse the crowd. Cavalry charged into the crowd with sabres drawn, and in the ensuing confusion, 15 people were killed and 400–700 were injured, among them many women and even children. The massacre was given the name Peterloo in ironic comparison to the Battle of Waterloo, which had taken place four years earlier.

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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.

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A frosty morning over the Manchester Ship Canal, Runcorn.

Photo credit: Peter I. Vardy

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WikiProject

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WikiProject Greater Manchester

Related WikiProjects
United Kingdom
Lancashire and Cumbria •Cheshire • Merseyside • Yorkshire

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. playersList of railway stations in Greater Manchester List 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. seasonsManchester United F.C. records and statisticsManchester United 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 Salford • Controversy over the usage of Manchester Cathedral in Resistance: Fall of Man • David 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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