19th century Manchester was at the heart of the industrial revolution. By the middle of the 1800s, it was considered to be the greatest industrial city in the world. Slowly, however, the industrial landscape changed and by the 1970s, the city was in steep decline. Jobs moved elsewhere and Thatcherite economics took hold. In the early 2000s, money began returning to the city and glass towers sprung up to house the new urban elite. But, poverty remained an epidemic outside of the city centre. This story follows life along the city’s canals, once great highways of industry, but now avenues through some of the poorest neighborhoods. These are the unknown streets where poverty’s tragic scars are on full display.
This is Manchester. This is England.