You Know You’re a Greater Mancunian Child of the 1980s If…

You were born in the 1980s and lived in Greater Manchester. Of course.

1451 Leyland Olympian, NJA 568W, Greater Manchester Transport

Time for a much needed irreverent article on this blog! Given that a great number of East of the M60‘s readership tend to be Children of the 1980s, this inspired me to create this piece. Feel free to share the love on this blog, on your favoured social networking site(s), or laugh profusely at the memories of this much maligned decade.

You Know You’re A Greater Mancunian Child of the 1980s If…

  1. You remember paying 10p or 12p on an orange and white bus or an orange, white and brown bus. Or half fare between Glossop and Woolley Bridge then 10p or 12p on a 236 to Stalybridge or Manchester.
  2. You remember the aviary and the fountains inside Manchester’s Arndale Centre.
  3. The highlight of your journey aboard the 409 was seeing the Pullman carriage outside The Yew Tree Inn, Thornham.
  4. The highlight of any school fire safety talk was seeing Welephant.
  5. You remember having lunch in Chuffers, a converted railway carriage beside the Power Hall of the Manchester Museum of Science and Industry.
  6. Your older sibling(s) had records by A Certain Ratio, The Durutti Column and The Chameleons alongside Now That’s What I Call Music Volume One.
  7. Captain Marvel still means Bryan Robson.
  8. Your highlight of supporting Manchester City – besides the 5-1 Derby win on the 23 September 1989 was the 10-1 thrashing of Huddersfield Town.
  9. The names Fort Beswick, Fort Ardwick and the Hulme Crescents fill you with dread.
  10. You took great delight in using St. Peter’s Precinct (Oldham, of course) as a skateboard ramp or assault course.
  11. You listened to Frank Sidebottom’s show on Piccadilly Radio.
  12. You miss Manchester’s underground market, accessed from two – always broken – escalators from Brown Street.
  13. The first McDonalds you remembered was either on Merseyway Precinct, Stockport, or Market Street, Manchester.
  14. Your first trip to a Virgin Megastore was a dark and dingy unit in the Arndale Centre, close to where Carphone Warehouse is today.
  15. Vimto, instead of that sissy Robinsons Cordial, went well with anything edible.
  16. You remember dishing out, or eating, ‘Happy Snax’ potato snacks at a friend’s birthday party.
  17. A trip to the bakery shop meant Spinks, Wimbush, Hagenbach or Burneys for a meat and potato pie.
  18. Watching Rugby League meant a trip to Watersheddings, Central Park, Hilton Park or Station Road (Oldham, Wigan, Leigh and Swinton RLFCs) in sub zero conditions.
  19. The names ‘Bee Line Buzz Company’ and ‘Little GeM’ along with the novelty of boarding frequent minibuses filled you with excitement (till you realised how much of a nightmare they were to load, especially with pushchairs and shopping trolleys of course).
  20. You remember the grandiose grottos in Lewis’s in the run-up to Christmas, or the toy fair at Kendal Milne’s store.
  21. You still refer to the Mecca bingo hall in Oldham as Shopping Giant.
  22. Wigan Pier, besides being part of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and linked with dance music, meant an excellent historical attraction with reenacted school classes, historical exhibits, and the nearby Trencherfield Mill engine.
  23. You were excited at the emergence of fun pools with wave machines and fake palm trees in Bolton and Hyde (The Water Place, Tameside Leisure Pool).
  24. Your hip brother or sister listened to Stu Allen or Tony The Greek.

Glaring Omissions?

Feel free to add a few more aspects to being A Greater Mancunian Child of the 1980s. More local the better please!

S.V., 05 December 2012.

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2 thoughts on “You Know You’re a Greater Mancunian Child of the 1980s If…

Add yours

  1. Some great memories there. I do fondly remember the underground market in Manchester – there some good photos floating around somewhere in the photo archive section of the manchester.gov.uk site.

    From a radio point of view my memories were being able to dial 261 to get Piccadilly on your telephone, trying to crack Billy Bradshaw’s Brain Buster over breakfast before school and the silly hour on James Stannage’s show which was essential playground discsussion fodder.

    Regards Richard

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    1. Hi Richard,

      I have seen the photos on Manchester.gov.uk. There’s also a few good ones of the old Virgin Megastore on Flickr.com. As for the best views of Manchester’s underground Market Centre, the opening titles of ‘The Living Dead at the Manchester Morgue’ is well worth looking at. (Trailer also contains a healthy amount of SELNEC liveried buses)!

      Thanks for mentioning being able to dial 261 for Piccadilly Radio. I too used to remember listening to Billy Bradshaw’s Brain Buster. It was on around 0820 in the midst of James H. Reeve’s show. I never listened to James Stannage’s silly hour stuff, but listened to his show in the early 1990s.

      Bye for now,

      Stuart.

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