North of the centre of Manchester you find vast council house areas which are elevated above the centre of the city. There are many places where you look down at the distant shops, banks, bars and clubs and I wonder how that feels if you live in places such as here, which is Clayton.

In the riots of three years ago I think most of the trouble came down from these areas. Resentment and having not was the motivation. Smash a window and you could steal those trainers, that expensive liquor, that flat screen television, from which you are normally barred.

About a year ago a man was shot outside a bingo hall not far from here in an area called Harpurhey. When I read the report I knew, before the locale was identified, it was going to be Harpurhey. About three years ago there was a gang machete attack in Clayton. The main road at Clayton is now strewn with tram line cables. The network has been developed, stretching out from the city. I found it an ugly and uncomfortable experience. You feel covered, industrialised, oppressed.

The wild flowers here are mostly Ragwort and Rosebay Willowherb. There are two or three slight variations on the Willowherb, but I think Rosebay is most common. The city skyline is just visible in the distance.


Manchester Wild Flowers: Distant City

Wednesday August 6, 2014