Friday, November 5, 2010

Wigan ... and the pier!

Wigan?  Well, not just yet.  I thought I'd show you another image from Manchester before I take you to Wigan.  I mentioned before the excellent public transport system and used the trains, buses and trams as I journeyed in and out of Manchester.  However, many people use their cars and I can recall my frustrations when I used to drive into the city and then try to park my car.  there always seemed to be those double yellow lines on the side of the road indicating that parking was prohibited!  That's what amused me about the first image in this post.  Here's a wee alleyway, just wide enough for one car and they'd got double yellow lines on BOTH sides of the road.  I can't work out how you could park on one sode of the road without being parked on the other ... perhaps they use the pavement?  Anyway, it amused me :-)

So, Wigan!  Many New Zealanders think of rugby when you mention Wigan, but there's more than rugby to Wigan.  Wigan is a very old town that played a significant role in the areas coal and cotton industries.  However, this was subsequent to its previous reputation for porcelain and clock making.  Much of the coal and cotton industry's transportation needs were addressed by the canal (the Leeds and Liverpool) and then railway system and you'll see examples of this in the other images in this post.  Besides canals and railways, several of the old warehouses, stores and mill buildings remain, and a number of these can be seen alongside the canal.  Most of these buildings no longer fulfill their original purpose and have been converted into museums, apartments, hotels or bars.

The image above shows what is apparently Wigan's Pier.  Made famous by George Orwell in his book, "The road to Wigan Pier" the notion of a pier in a place such as Wigan was always seen as a bit of a joke.  Now the name Wigan Pier refers more to an area than the original very short wooden jetty from which coal wagons or tipplers were unloaded into the waiting canal boats.

The last two images in this post are HDR images taken in the Wigan Pier area.  Not too bad a place for a pleasant stroll down the canal.  What do you think?

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