33, 35 and 37 Manchester Road, Middleton

Drawing of 33, 35 and
                    37 Manchester Road

Above my humble attempt to replicate Wood's original drawing

John H. G. Archer, in his paper Edgar Wood: A Notable Manchester Architect says of these shops: "Situated in the shopping centre of Middleton, this small block of shops must have made a very startling appearance in Edwardian Middleton. First, they are flat-roofed, and secondly the front of each shop is defined by a broad panel of white glazed tiles, each patterned with three vertical lines of chevrons in green tiles. In between the panels are narrow bands of good quality facing bricks."

"Originally the shop fronts and all joinery fittings were painted white and the shop windows were divided into panes of near-Regency proportion. The use of glazed tiles is of considerable interest in an atmosphere as polluted as that of Middleton, and it appears to have been intended to provide permanent colour and a self-cleansing surface. The shop fronts have all been altered but thc tiled panels remain, no surface in such conditions is ever self-cleansing, however, and the original effect has been dulled. Washing down, as in modern office buildings, would probably restore the effect."

As you can see the original woodwork on the shops has long since gone and, since John Archer wrote that description, there seems to have been some structural damage to the tiles above number 35.


Some earlier photographs.

Images generously donated by "Pilkington's Lancastrian Pottery Society"

Image generously donated by "Pilkington's Lancastrian Pottery Society"