Thursday 17 August 2017

Salford Quays

As well as getting up late we (ie Christine and Jess) made sure that all of Jess's belongings were packed ready for her return home tomorrow. As a result it was late in the morning before we set out, first to walk to Piccadilly to catch a Metrolink out to Salford Quays.

Along the way we were amused by this sign - as if (the water were deep!)

We went right to the end at Media City UK where we took in the huge scale of all the buildings around the open square that are all part of the tv production which takes place here since much of the BBC moved north some years ago.

Jess spotted a sign to the Blue Peter Garden which we followed - although it has the famous head of Petra it was perhaps a lot smaller garden than we anticipated.

Still, a chance for Miss Poser . . .

We continued our stroll around the large arms that once were the docking place for ships from all over the world.

We reached the Lowry but first checked out a place to have lunch - we aimed to be quite late eating - and found a Chinese buffet restaurant and booked to make sure we would have a place at 1:30.

But first we went into the Lowry and found a small craft activity feature where Jess was shown how to gather the materials to make her own kaleidoscope. This took some while so Christine went back to Real China and put off our arrival for another 15 minutes. Actually, by the time we reached there it was not too busy.

It is an 'all-you-can-eat' buffet with a wide variety of items to choose from. Jess is well versed in selecting Chinese food and really led the way. She especially liked the spare ribs and the aromatic shredded duck, but also sampled a lot of other things.

The rest of us also did quite well but it was hard to compete with Jess.

After quite a long lunch we eventually paid up and left, with just a short walk back to the Lowry where, alongside the permanent collection of LS Lowry's work there was a special display of photographs taken in 1966 by Clive Arrowsmith, then at the beginning of his long career. These photos had long been forgotten but were recently re-discovered in Arrowsmith's attic by his daughter.

The original brief was to spend two days with Lowry, firstly at his home in Mottram-in-Longenden. The house was quite spartan and somewhat untidy but Arrowsmith was able to capture the feeling especially of the even then dated domestic equipment. The other part of the shoot took place around Salford, the area that Lowry knew when he was much younger and inspired his most famous works.

Although most of the photos show a genial old man with a wry smile on his face, this one perhaps best captured the loneliness that Lowry described of himself and as the essence of his work.

Jess had a quiz sheet given to her at the front desk when we arrived and really enjoyed finding all the items somewhere in the paintings. She also talk at length about how the pictures seemed to her.

Time was passing and so from there we walked back towards Media City UK as Jess wanted more time to explore the gardens. She especially liked this very unusual climbing sculpture - she found that it was best used as if she was a penguin (don't ask!)

We sat in the sunshine and were watching daytime tv on a very large screen (Tipping Point, would you believe) when we noticed that there was a tram ready to leave going back to Piccadilly. Thus tempted we abandoned our previous plan to walk back as far as the Harbour City stop! We needed to do a little shopping on the way back to the boat.

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