Photos of Manchester’s legendary gay clubnight Flesh and Clause 28 protests have gone on display at The Kimpton Clocktower Hotel.
Documenting and celebrating the city’s LGBTQIA+ community, the new exhibition appears as part of the venue’s longstanding partnership with arts institution the British Culture Archive (BCA).
Named ‘Together As One – A Celebration Of Manchester’s LGBTQIA+ Community’, the exhibit launched on Thursday 28 July and will be in situ throughout the summer.
Photographs on display capture two pivotal moments in the city’s queer history.
Photography by Peter J Walsh documents the anti-Clause 28 protest, which was held in Manchester and saw over 20,000 people take to the streets to protest Clause 28 – an attempt to suppress the gay community at a time when it was already struggling to deal with the HIV & AIDS epidemic and the backlash towards the community driven by media.
Walsh, who is more well known for documenting the city’s nightlife during the ‘Madchester’ years is one of the few who documented this important protest that would help change the face of LGBTQIA+ rights in the UK.
Speaking on the Clause 28 Demo, Manchester, 1988 imagery, photographer Peter J Walsh said: “The Anti-Clause 28 demo was one of the largest demonstrations I had covered in Manchester during that period.
“The starting point was on Oxford Road, by the Poly and the participants seemed to go on as far as the eye could see. Manchester City Council reckoned there were 20,000 people on the demo. It was loud, happy and vibrant.
“The country had been under Thatcher’s rule since 1979 and people were determined to fight back against this law.
“The left-wing council of Manchester welcomed the marchers and stood with them in solidarity against the divisive Tory Government. The LGBQTQIA+ communities civil liberties were under attack by Thatcher and we were prepared to stand shoulder to shoulder with them and say enough is enough.”
Elsewhere, photographs by Jon Shard capture The Haçienda’s hallowed dancefloor club night, Flesh, first launched in October 1991.
Flesh was the flamboyant mid-week night at The Haçienda, which welcomed everyone, black, white, gay, straight and was also the home of the clubs’ first female resident DJs, Paulette and Kath McDermott.
Flesh arrived during a turbulent time during the club’s and city’s history., the comedown from the Halycon years of 1988-1990 was in full flow and regular ‘Hac’ nights were losing their appeal due to a number of heavy gang-related incidents and laddish clientele putting off the punters.
The Haçienda and nights such as Flesh fit into a tradition of creativity and cultural innovation in Manchester, which can be seen throughout the city today.
Speaking on the Flesh at The Haçienda imagery, photographer Jon Shard said: “My friends and people around me, would be talking about it all month.
“People came from all over, you had people from Europe coming over for it – it was always packed and full of energy. It was one of the most important nights there – probably the biggest gay night in Europe.
“It was always special. I was there for every single one, it was the best night to shoot because of the carnival atmosphere. It was really colourful, everyone would spend two or three days working out what they were going to wear for it.”
The new exhibit ‘Together As One – A Celebration of Manchester’s LGBTQIA+ Community’ follows on from the success of ‘A Woman’s Work’, the first instalment by the BCA in the hotel,
Throughout the summer, Kimpton Clocktower Hotel and The Refuge Bar and Restaurant will be hosting a series of summer activities in celebration of all things Pride.
From Sparkle Weekend celebrations, a new exhibition celebrating Manchester’s LGBTQIA+ community in partnership with British Culture Archive, and of course the iconic Come As You Are Weekender – there’s something for everyone.
To find out more about the Kimpton Clocktower Hotel x British Culture Archive ‘Together As One – A Celebration Of Manchester’s LGBTQIA+ Community’, visit the hotel’s website here:
Mani from The Stone Roses is throwing a fundraising party with his wife following cancer diagnosis
Gary ‘Mani’ Mounfield and his wife Imelda are throwing a massive fundraising night to raise money for The Christie and The Stockport Charitable Trust.
The wife of the Stone Roses legend was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer in November 2020, and has been undergoing gruelling treatment and surgeries ever since.
The pair, who have nine-year-old twins together, will curate an evening of first-class entertainment at The Kimpton Clocktower Hotel’s ballroom in Manchester city centre.
This is The One: Let’s Kick Cancer’s Arse will be taking place during Mani’s birthday week, with raffle and auction prizes donated by bands, footballers, actors, venues and promoters.
Imelda is an events agent who says: “Both charities have supported me through my journey. Cancer affects not just the person who has it, but everyone around them, and I hope that by investing in some more research, we can help alleviate some of the devastation caused to families.”
Mani added: “When life deals you a pair of twos, you must get your game face on! The past two years since my wife’s diagnosis have been brutal in so many ways, but it’s also opened our eyes to so many things.
“This disease needs to be eradicated – we feel duty bound to do our bit to achieve this. So everybody, get on board, dig deep, help out, we will win!”
By the time Imelda was diagnosed with bowel cancer, it had already spread to her liver and a small nodule in her lung, she wrote on her own JustGiving page.
She said: “I underwent emergency life-saving bowel surgery at it perforated. I had Covid and appendicitis for my first 3 chemo sessions, which were missed.
“I thought I was going down to the theatre to confirm appendicitis. Nobody heard anything for 9 hrs. Hence I woke with no small colon and an ileostomy stoma instead.
“Fast forward 6 months of treatments and breaks while they considered surgery, I had the right side of my liver removed.
“We were just on the mop-up stage of chemo when a scan revealed another tumour in the liver and several nodules on my lungs.
“I’m looking at other treatment centres and treatments privately as I’m nowhere near giving up this fight.
“Think positive thoughts into the universe for me to beat this. I’ve got twin boys aged 9 who I’m fighting for to be their mummy to be there for many years to come.”
This is The One: Let’s Kick Cancer’s Arse will take place at The Kimpton Clocktower’s ballroom on Friday 18 November.
Featured image: Paul Husband
A live orchestra is performing Kanye West’s ‘best’ album in Manchester next month
One of Kanye West’s most-critically acclaimed albums is set to be performed by a live orchestra right here in Manchester next month.
And tickets are going on sale very soon.
There aren’t many artists in recent times who could be considered quite as polarising or who divide opinion like Kayne West, but despite how controversial his public persona has been over the last decade, and most-recently within the last few years, he is still widely considered to be one of the most influential hip hop musicians of all time, as well as often being voted as one of the greatest musicians of his generation.
But in typical Kanye fashion, his music often divides opinion just as much as his public persona – especially aomng fans, who will usually debate his best songs and albums, but rarely come to an agreement as to what they are.
One of the albums generally-considered by critics to be the best of West’s discography though is his 2010 album ‘My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy’.
And if that’s the album you were expecting it to be, then you might want to add the date Friday 2 December to your diary, as that is when a live orchestra will be setting up at The Blues Kitchen to perform a “reimagining” of the LP in full.
Smash-hits like ‘Power’, ‘Runaway’, and ‘Monster’ are just some of the tracks from the album set to be performed during the set.
In a description for the upcoming event, The Blues Kitchen Manchester said: “Kanye’s career-defining record, My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy, is widely seen as one of the last decade’s greatest albums [so] we’re incredibly excited to re-interpret this cult classic with a 13-piece orchestra formed of the UK’s finest classically trained musicians, using a unique musical score.”
On top of the influential album being performed in full, fans can also expect to hear “some extra Kanye classics to finish off the night” too.
Re:imagine My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy will be live at The Blues Kitchen Manchester on Friday 2 December, and tickets are set to go on sale at 10am next week on Tuesday 16 August.