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08 October 2019Manchester : Art & Industry - where modern Britain was born
06 May 2019Amsterdam
09 May 2018Friuli (Italy) 9-14 May 2018
07 October 2017Write-up of Kent trip October 2017 by Maureen Richardson
02 October 2017Kent: Gateway to Medieval England. 2-6 October 2017
07 May 2017BOUCHE DU RHONE TRIP - MAY 2017
10 October 2016Tour of North Yorkshire with David Bostwick, October 2016. Write-up by David Over
03 August 2016Croatia Tour - May 2016. Write-up by Hilary Box
12 October 2015Lincolnshire Tour - October 2015 Led by David Bostwick, MA, PhD

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Manchester : Art & Industry - where modern Britain was born

8 – 12 October 2019

 This year’s UK tour was to Manchester with Nirvana Romell who has successfully led three of our four previous overseas tours.

 On arrival at Stockport station we were greeted by Nirvana and taken to Quarry Bank Mill, near Styal village. This is a cotton mill, founded by Samuel Greg, which still retains working machinery. We were shown how the cotton spinning and weaving developed and the working and living conditions of the mill workers. (

The following day we had an excellent walking tour of Manchester in the morning led by Andrew Derbyshire and an afternoon visit to the Manchester Art Gallery. Nirvana has worked at the gallery for many years and gave us a fascinating account of the development of British art from Hogarth to the Edwardians.

Our next visit was to Saltaire Mill, a UNESCO world heritage site built by Sir Titus Salt. This enormous textile mill was operational from 1853 until 1986. Nearby is the village built by Sir Titus to accommodate the mill workers who had previously had to travel from Bradford where they lived in squalid back to back houses. The mill has now been converted into offices and exhibition spaces where there is a fine selection of Hockney paintings. (

On Friday morning we were driven to Tatton Park where we had a private tour of the house, and saw the amazing collection of Gillow furniture that was made especially for the house. One condition of the gift of the house to the National Trust was that no furniture could be removed or added to what is currently in the house.  (

A highlight of the tour was a concert of Russian music in the Bridgewater Hall performed by the Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra. The acoustics in the hall are spectacular and the performance was completely compelling.

On our final day the sun came out and we travelled to Salford Quays to visit the Lowry. Within the complex is a group of galleries devoted to the work of L S Lowry. Once again, Nirvana brought a completely new perspective to his life and works that gave the paintings added meaning. (

After a splendid farewell lunch overlooking Media City we caught the train home, exhausted and exhilarated in equal measure. It was a most successful tour for which we thank Rosie Mortimer the Tour Secretary.

Honor Juniper

October 2019