Monday, 10 March 2008

Retracing Salford

This exhibition at Salford Museum and Art Gallery documents over 50 years of Salford’s recent history. The exhibition includes

  • Photographer Maria Murphy’s view of regeneration in Salford
  • Mixed-media artist Tim Garner’s collages of photography & painting
  • Lawrence Cassidy’s family photographs, films and memories from residents of demolished Salford streets.

I spoke to Maria Murphy as she reminisced about growing up in Broughton in the 1960s. She said, “We used to have play streets, the road used to be closed so kids could go out and play in the streets. But you go there now and it’s hard to find anyone on the street at all.”

The regeneration projects of the 60s, including the flagship flats at Hanover Court, had become eyesores by the time they were demolished in 2005. Through the 70s and 80s the housing deteriorated in structure and remained under-funded for refurbishment. They were recently condemned for providing substandard living conditions to Salfordians.

It throws a spotlight on the hotly-contested local redevelopment that Salford City Council is undertaking; the regeneration flats at Chimney Pot Park; “affordable housing” way out of the reach of local residents and the Council’s habit of ploughing money into short-sighted housing renewal projects.

The exhibition runs until 20th April, entry free.