9 Things you may not know about Manchester

Manchester has now joined the growing rank of cities where O2 4G is available, meaning that we now offer 4G coverage to 15 million people – that’s 25% of the UK’s population! Anyway, we thought this might be a great time to brush up on our knowledge of the city.

Here are some facts about our latest 4G debutant:

1.   Manchester is the only place in the world where you can obtain a degree in ‘Mummy Studies’ – the University of Manchester has facilities to enable the study of ancient Egyptian mummies.

2.   When in Manchester, you could be forgiven for thinking that you’re in a famous (yet fictitious) London suburb. Albert Square is home to to Manchester Town Hall. There was once a pub there called the Square Albert. Can’t help thinking they missed a trick there…

3.   Manchester began life as a Roman fort & settlement. It was called Mamicium – which is a latinised form of the Celtic meaning ‘breast-shaped hill’. We’ll just leave that one there.

4.   Liverpool Road train station is the oldest surviving terminal railway station. Opened on 15 September 1830, it was one of the first two railway passenger terminals in the world, the other being Liverpool Crown Street.

5. Of all the Manchester hotel-based conceptions, probably one of the most noteworthy is that of posh car and engineering brand, Rolls-Royce. On 4 May 1904, Charles Rolls and Henry Royce were introduced at the Midland Hotel. Soon after, the Rolls-Royce 10hp was born.

6.   Another famous Manchester hotel creation is that of The Football League. Formed during a rendez-vous at the Royal Hotel, Piccadilly, on 17 April 1888, it’s the oldest professional football league on the planet.

7.  Despite its long-term nickname of ‘The Rainy City’, Manchester is actually one of the drier UK cities. Boffins at the University of Manchester think that the ill-conceived reputation originated from a misleading climate map from 1926, which showed heavily concentrated rainfall over the area.

8.   A fair bit of the UK’s talent originated here. Musical megastar brothers Noel & Liam Gallagher are famous Mancunians, as are  The Stone Roses’ Ian Brown, Mick Hucknall of Simply Red fame, and The Wanted’s Max George. Telly sleuth Inspector Morse was a Manchester boy – or at least John Thaw, the actor who played him, was. Not forgetting funny men Chris Addison and the late Les Dawson, as well as the amusingly professional whinger, Karl Pilkington.

9.  Manchester Viaduct uses 11 million bricks. If you laid them all out, end to end, the line of bricks would stretch from Manchester to Madrid and back. (Similarly, if you laid out all the bricks in the shape of a viaduct, they would be as long as Manchester viaduct).

So, there you have it – 9 facts about Manchester. And we didn’t even mention the whole ‘Red vs Blue’ thing. Oh…

Got any interesting facts about Manchester? Amaze your friends with your  localised knowledge by leaving it in the comments below.