A new mural of Marcus Rashford has appeared in Manchester city centre over the weekend, highlighting the huge amount of abuse the footballer receives online.
Split into two – with one side full of unkind messages and the other spilling over with praise for the footballer, who campaigns tirelessly to improve the lives of Britain’s poorest families – it tells a stark tale of what is deemed acceptable behaviour online today.
The new artwork has been created by Reuben Dangoor, a British artist whose work is heavily influenced by current affairs and his own surroundings, in collaboration with Beats by Dre headphones.
The company, Dangoor said: “wanted to do something to show support for Marcus, who is subject to a huge amount of abuse on social media. At the same time highlighting the positive work he has been doing off the pitch and the impact that it’s had.”
A message reading ‘Form is temporary, class is permanent’ stretches across the bottom of the artwork, with Marcus depicted in the centre with his eyes shut and his ears plugged with wireless headphones.
Behind him swarm hundreds of yellow, orange and red emoji-style reactions, a mixture of smiling and angry faces, thumbs up and hearts, alongside positive and negative messages stylised as Twitter replies.
It isn’t clear if these are real replies the footballer has received, or if they are merely inspired by them.
Negative messages like “You don’t deserve to wear the shirt”, “you play like a child” and “stick to football” dominate one side of the mural (and serve as a stark reminder of the unsolicited abuse Rashford and many other public figures face online every day).
On the other side of the mural, there are overwhelming messages of positivity. One says simply “Replying to @MarcusRashford Let’s go Rashy”, whilst another says: “Replying to @MarcusRashford Proud to have you represent the shirt.”
Another, acknowledging the footballer’s book club and the work he’s done to encourage young people to read, says: “Replying to @MarcusRashford Thank you. Cos of you my son has started reading.”
Marcus Rashfod has previously reported the racist abuse he has received on social media to the police.
He regularly receives tides of racist and abusive messaging online, and this seems to get even worse when Manchester United loses a match, reporting at least 70 different abusive messages after his team’s 2021 Europa League loss – including one from a teacher.
Sharing his concept sketches on Instagram today alongside the finished piece, mural artist Reuben gave followers a peek behind the scenes at what his process was when designing the new Marcus Rashford mural for Manchester.
He wrote: “First one was the final last one is my best work to date.”
Reuben Dangoor has previously painted portraits of Stormzy, Skepta and Dizzee Rascal, and debuted these at the Tate Britain Museum for his debut exhibition ‘Legends of the Scene’.
It’s also not his first rendezvous drawing footballers, having had his line drawings of the England football squad picked up in both TV and print in 2018. His viral drawing of Gareth Southgate was later acquired by the Southgate family.
He has had his work featured in Design Museum’s Sneaker Exhibition, was the first artist to collaborate on the new Adidas Predators, is collaborating with Arlo Parks on her world tour campaign and merchandise, and has worked alongside David Beckham to design an exclusive in-game “David Beckham” kit for FIFA 22, released last month.
Find the mural over on the border of Shudehill and the Northern Quarter by the old fish market.
Feature image – The Manc Group
The Makers Market is coming back to Cutting Room Square every month as of this Sunday
The North West’s hugely popular Makers Market is returning to Ancoat’s Cutting Room Square as of this weekend, marking the start of a monthly community staple.
While Makers Markets have been popping up around the region for years now — Stockport, Cheadle, Salford and Media City; Knutsford, Northern Quarter, Didsbury, Congleton and countless other locations — it’s only ever been at Cutting Room Square just the once as part of a trial run back in November 2022.
However, after going down an absolute treat and just as popular as all the others around Greater Manchester and beyond, the organisers have decided to bring it back on a permanent basis from this weekend onwards. Ancoats just got even better.
Now, as of Sunday, 2 April, city centre residents and those travelling into town will be able to enjoy a regular community market packed with local traders from all over every month. Wonderful stuff.
If for some reason you’ve never come across a Makers Market before, the concept is pretty simple: local businesses and indie traders of all different kinds gather in public spaces like Cutting Room Square, setting up pop-up stalls to sell their wares, whatever they may be.
Whether it’d be homemade food and bakery items, handcrafted prints and textiles, or homeware, second-hand records, flowers and everything in between, there is literally always something for everyone.
More importantly, though, these monthly markets aren’t just another place to shop locally and responsibly, but they genuinely provide a wonderful sense of community, quickly cementing themselves as a regular staple for everyone to look forward to and socialise at.
Typically taking place on the second Sunday of every month and with Cutting Room Square and Ancoats already a popular district for locals and tourists alike, we’re sure the atmosphere is going to be great.
You’ve also got the successful Ancoats Pop Up events scattered throughout the rest of the 2023 calendar too — happy days.
We look forward to a year filled with plenty more markets all around Greater Manchester!
You can check out the full list of traders that will be appearing at this weekend’s Makers Market at Cutting Room Square HERE.
Graeme Park thanks fans for ‘valued support’ and launches fundraiser in memory of late son
Graeme Park has thanked fans for their “valued support” following the devastating passing of his teenage son last week.
The former Hacienda legend and his family have also set up a fundraiser in his memory.
The DJ took to social media last week to share the heartbreaking news that his “true warrior” son Oliver had passed away at the age of 18 after a year-long battle with a rare cancer.
In a tribute to the late teenager, Graeme described his son as a “kind, loving, and beautiful soul” who “fought so hard until the very end” but was sadly taken “far too soon” when he “had so much more love to offer to this world”.
Graeme’s initial post drew in thousands of messages of love and support from the Greater Manchestermusic and entertainment community and beyond, as well as from famous name including from Vernon Kay, Sacha Lord, and DJ Paulette.
He asked fans to “bear with me” and confirmed that he will not be performing DJ sets or appearing on the radio for the time being.
Now, a week after sharing the news of Oliver’s passing, Graeme, his wife Jen, and son Ben have taken the time to thank everyone for their “wonderful and valued support” – adding that the family is “heartbroken” to have lost a son, grandson, nephew, cousin and friend.
“Your messages and kind words have been well received and have offered us all some much needed strength and hope at what has been a very difficult time,” Graeme continued.
“Friends, colleagues, fans, followers and complete strangers have all been in touch in person, via phone, email and social media offering support and more, and it really has been heartwarming to read all the messages and to listen to everyone who’s called.
“Apologies if I’ve not responded to everyone, but rest assured we all really do appreciate the sentiment.
“Thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”
Graeme also confirmed that, after lots of discussion following so many reaching out and asking if there’s anything they can do to help, the family has decided to set up a JustGiving page in Oliver’s memory to help raise “much needed funds and awareness” for Sarcoma UK.
Sarcoma UK is a national charity that funds vital research, offers support for anyone affected by sarcoma cancer, and campaigns for better treatments.
“After complaining of leg pain over a long period, Oliver was eventually diagnosed as having a malignant nerve sheath tumour that was a type of sarcoma, hence our decision to help Sarcoma UK,” Graeme explained.
Sarcoma is a type of cancer that develops in the bone and soft tissue. It is difficult to diagnose and one of the hardest to treat – “but by donating in memory of Oliver, you can help change this.”
“Your donation will help researchers find answers, keep the specialist Support Line open, and raise awareness to improve treatment and standards of care,” Graeme concluded, “Your donations go so far in helping the sarcoma community.”
Over 200 people have already donated to the JustGiving fundraiser, with the total now at £6,900 and counting by the minute.