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Tag Archive for 'manchester'

Film Review “Breathing”

Poster for the movie "Breathing" "Atmen"

Film Title:  “Breathing”

subtitled and released in UK May 2012

origin: Austria

dir: Karl Markovics

starring: Thomas Schubert


PLOT: An institutionalised teenager comes of age working in a mortuary.

STYLE: Austrian realism.

MY THOUGHTS: Director’s debut film.  It’s involving, moving, has natural acting, slow paced, non-preachy and interesting.

MY MARKS: 7.5 out of 10


Other reviews:

Sight and Sound,  The Guardian,  Mark Kermode,  Little White Lies


“Touching Space” photography exhibition @ Cube Gallery, Manchester

This is a good chance to see two interesting photography exhibitions at the same time, both free @ Cube Gallery, Manchester.  These shows previewed last night and are well worth popping in for.  Cube Gallery is on Portland Street and a lovely space for exhibiting.  But be quick as the final day is this coming Saturday 18th June 2011.  I particularly enjoyed the work of the two photographers below:   Colin Jarvis photographer Touching Space exhibition at Cube Gallery Manchester

©Colin Jarvis from “Touching Space” exhibition

Pat Moss photographer from Touching Space exhibition at Cube Gallery Manchester

©Pat Moss from “Touching Space” exhibition

Manchester peregrines return again for 2011 …


The peregrine pair, who have nested in Manchester since 2005, have returned to the city to raise a family once again.  The two birds have decided to use the original nest box built for them in 2008, at a secret (but tall) building right in the heart of the city centre.  This chosen box luckily has a new video camera pointing right at the nest. It’s a joint operation between Manchester Digital Development Agency and the RSPB and allows live streaming of the nest for anyone who has internet access. The adult female laid the first egg on 22 March 2011, one soon became four and they all safely hatched on 30 April 2011.  Two male and two female.

Since then the little chicks have gained confidence, weight and endured the full range of Manchester weather from heatwave to downpours to gales.  All chicks are still growing and they have had rings fitted for safe tracking by trained RSPB handlers.

I have watched the live stream on the webcam when I can and I do seem to always see the same (yes, the smallest) chick timidly staying at the back of the bunch.  I do hope this wee thing discovers that it is survival of the fittest; it MUST become more assertive or maybe Mum and Dad give it a sneaky extra snack.  I hope so.

Estimates for possible fledging are around mid-June 2011.

Friendly RSPB staff and volunteers have a viewing telescope set up every day during the nesting, the team can be found outside the Triangle Shopping Centre in Exchange Square, Manchester from 11am to 6pm.  To be 100% sure the RSPB team will be there;  you can give them a call on 01484 861148.

The One Show did a short feature in 2008 which is available via YouTube, on the Manchester Peregrines with urban birder David Lindo, it is around 5 minutes long and well worth a watch.

Oh and I nearly forgot, the birds are on Twitter too: @mcrperegrines

Flickr photostream here with photos and video footage.

For my previous blog post and comments from 2010 nesting please click here.

LATEST: Wed 25th May 2011.  Just looking on the live stream and three of the birds are off on a walkabout out of the nest and onto the rooftop surrounding the box.  Hope they come back to be fed!

LATEST: Fri 17th June 2011.  All birds successfully fledged, high chance of spotting them if you look into the Manchester skies.  Popular perch spots on the Arndale and also the Premier Inn.  RSPB and telescopes are there in Exchange Square for closer viewing opportunities of the birds.

Papergirl Manchester: like art? like cycling? then this is for you …


I am hoping to take part in this fantastic art project which started in Berlin and now comes to Manchester in September.  I need to find time to print up some of my latest photography work (one print I’m submitting has just been shortlisted for an award but I’m not allowed to announce what just yet).  I am determined to find time to support such a terrific idea.

To get involved you can donate an hour or two and become an art distributer via bicycle or you can create and donate your artistic work.  Or both.  This art can be anything; any subject (within decency realms), any quantity, originals, prints, photos, copies etc. all are welcome.  Details of how to submit are here. Work should be between A4 and A1 in size.  The Deadline is 1st September 2010.

Each distributed art roll will contain several different works, so each one holds a unique combination of works.

The bike bit is designed to mean the art will go to anyone who happens to be in the vicinity of the cycle route at the time, so it’s completely random and without stereotype.  It fits with the quirky nature of the project and allows art to become public art.

All work will be exhibited at Nexus Cafe, Manchester Soup Kitchen, Norther Quarter, Manchester, prior to distribution and some contributors work is being featured over on the Papergirl tumblr site right this minute ….  so get along and have a shufty.

The project is on twitter and facebook and has been featured over at central station creative network and on the Creative Boom website.  You can read more about the original Berlin project here (don’t worry if your German is a little rusty there is an English translation).

Finally, if Ms Papergirl MCR (Janice?) reads this, I have two questions:

1) Can I buy a Papergirl MCR tee-shirt?  I see Berlin had one and it’s lovely.
2) Can cycling boys take part and be Paperboys?

UPDATESept 8th 2010. Preview Night, all welcome at Soup Kitchen: See the Papergirl Manchester submissions before they are distributed at our exhibition launch night, on Thursday 30th September from 7pm. Papergirl Manchester will showcase artists from Russia, Estonia, Canada, France, Ukraine, Italy, Spain, U.S.A, Sweden, Italy, Germany and the UK. So far we have received almost 700 pieces of work to be distributed. The exhibition will feature at least one piece by each artist.

UPDATE: Sept 8th 2010.  Papergirl still accepting late submissions: “We have a few late submissions coming in so if you haven’t submitted anything but want to, get in touch

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Manchester peregrines: new home on CIS tower building.


Post-Springwatch I get lots of visitors reading the blog who have searched via the keywords Manchester and Peregrines.  I thought it about time I updated the blog post I did last year as things have moved on.  Yes quite literally!  The pair, which previously nested under the installed webcam at a secret location in the centre of Manchester, decided they needed a change of scene.

Being birds of a certain taste they plumped for the penthouse floor on the Grade II-listed CIS Tower owned by the Co-operative Society.  A very sound choice by the wise pair, being the second tallest building in the city centre at 387ft (opened in 2007 Hilton Tower/Beetham Tower became the highest at 554ft).  Snowdon may well be ten times the height of the CIS Tower but this Manchester landmark building is more than adequate height-wise and provides a healthy and perpetual pigeon diet right on the doorstep.

The Co-op are chuffed to bits the birds are nesting on their building and using the nestbox they built, rather hopefully, four years ago.  They released a  news update on their blog and this is the place to go if you want to get in touch with any questions.

Sadly, the switch of nesting site by the peregrine pair caught everyone on the hop a bit and though there was a webcam on the CIS near the nest site, it was found not to work and needed replacing.  The birds could not be disturbed once the nest was built so a team was tasked from the RSPB Peregrine Project to allow Manchester’s residents and visitors to gain terrific views.  Most Saturday’s the RSPB have a high-powered telescope or two trained on the nest and the bird’s popular posing spots.  Check the RSPB site to find out more details.  They should be at Exchange Square (outside the Triangle/Corn Exchange) until mid-July but do check the website before heading out.


Previously the Manchester peregrine pair have raised four chicks.  2010 has been less successful with two chicks being born.  That could be a result of the long, harsh cold winter and a resulting poor diet, no-one really knows.  The new chicks were ringed at the end of May which will allow further monitoring and tracking.  There’s a short piece featuring the very vocal chick above on the BBC Manchester website.  I am not sure whether they have fledged yet, but the male bird has been reported hunting and bringing food back to the nest only last week so my guess is they haven’t gone exploring just yet.  Do let me know and send a comment if you have any further information.

Nice to know the Manchester peregrine pair are back and the city once again has a fantastic chance to catch an intimate glimpse of one of the avian world’s star performers.

To read my previous post on the birds return to Manchester in 2009 (featuring some great still images taken from the webcam) click here.

UPDATE. July 2010. I am afraid I have some sad news to report.  One of the two peregrine chicks did not make it past it’s maiden flight.  Eyewitness accounts seem to be pointing to the demise being due to the young bird flying into an office window.  This does seem to tally up with the fact that the new nest site is next to the mirrored glass/solar panels of the CIS offices, who knows.  The second young chick also had a near catastrophe in the early days of learning to fly.  It hit the window of the nearby Crown Plaza Hotel and was rescued in a dazed condition.  After treatment and recuperation at the Animals in Distress centre in Irlam the bird was re-united with its parents and now seems to be doing really well.  Thanks goodness, one happy ending at least.

• UPDATE. June 2011. Click here to go to a further post on what has happened to the Manchester pair for 2011 who returned to raise more chicks this summer in Manchester.
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Graffiti in Manchester “Big Ideas Need Big Spaces”

Despite being informed that this was part of a Diesel ad campagn from 2008 (thank you @pgreenhalgh on Twitter) I still quite like this shot and thought I’d post it up. Fresh off the chip so to speak; taken this afternoon from a little sidestreet just off Ancoats, Northern Quarter, Manchester, sunny England.

Plus (a first for me), numero uno iPhoto upload onto my blog. So, albeit a tad grainy, but it’s a better camera to have with you whilst cycling back from a Client meeting than none at all!


LINKS: After a bit of digging I found a couple of other Manchester graffiti images featuring the same slogan:

Flickr/Kate Aldridge
Flickr/Claire Wroe


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