Introduction



Portrait by Wood's close friend Fred W. Jackson

Let me make it quite clear from the outset that I have no knowledge of architecture. That will be quite apparent as you delve into this web site. The function of the site is to bring to the attention of others, particularly other Mancunians, a man who added to the character of our city and who, except perhaps within architectural circles, has apparently been forgotten.

I "ran into" Edgar Wood during the development of my Longsight Memories web site. I was looking at aerial photographs of the Victoria Park area of Longsight, which was unfamiliar to me, when I spotted this rather odd shaped building with what appeared to be a large number of dormer windows. Investigations uncovered the fact that the building had been a church. After it closed its doors as a church, it was heavily vandalized. Some time later it was rescued, restored and adopted by the Manchester Metropolitan University as an arts centre called The Edgar Wood Centre, in honour of the architect who had designed it. I contacted John H. G. Archer, from the School of Architecture, University of Manchester, and he very generously sent me a paper he had written on the church but I was still struggling to find pictures. It was nearly a year later that I stood outside the security gate of the church, which is now the base of a company that creates training videos. I had been offered an opportunity to go inside and photograph this building which I had heard so much about. Was I disappointed? Was the quality of the building exaggerated? You can judge for yourself.

In the beginning, this site will show you some of the work of Edgar Wood, one of Manchester's foremost nineteenth-century architects. These images were collected during a visit to Manchester in May of 2000. Hopefully, over time, this collection of information will grow and it is my goal to photograph as many examples of Wood's work as I can find.

I have relied very heavily on John H. G. Archer's writing about Wood for information presented on this site. A lot of the textual material comes from his paper, "Edgar Wood - A Notable Manchester Architect"