A new book charting the early stages of Manchester’s Mayfield redevelopment and sharing the inside story of this landmark project, has been published.
Created and illustrated by award-winning sketcher and writer Len Grant, Mayfield Stories details the recent evolution of the historic Mayfield site from dereliction and neglect to a thriving hub of activity ahead of the first phase of development.
Since the start of the year, Len has closely documented the changes to the 24-acre site; including the creation of work space for artisan traders, the improvements to the landmark Mayfield Depot so it can become an atmospheric cultural venue, and of course the demolition of vacant industrial units.
He has spoken to dozens of people who have either visited Mayfield, or who are working on the site and helping to shape its future.
While it gears up for its long term transformation into a vibrant mixed use neighbourhood, part of Mayfield has been renovated in to a new world-class cultural venue called Depot. Following its launch earlier this year, Depot, an exciting five-year partnership with events operator Broadwick Live, has hosted major cultural events such as Manchester International Festival, and most recently Warehouse Project, which attracts 30,000 people to Depot every week.
Mayfield is also home to Dirt Factory, the UK’s first indoor mountain bike park which has been created in a former disused warehouse on the site, and also hosted the popular weekend GRUB street food fair.
Len also spoke to several small businesses taking up space at Mayfield. This included Tom and Dick’s Bedding Company, a textiles business returning to the spiritual epicentre of Manchester’s ‘Cottonopolis’ era.
The book is the first in a series which will follow the project’s progress. It costs £10 and is available online at www.lengrant.co.uk.
Len Grant said: “I’ve documented regeneration projects for over 25 years and Mayfield has to be the most exciting so far. For a development where nothing has been built yet, there is so much going on: so many stories to tell.The Mayfield Partnership is really committed to making this a community-focussed project and I hope that’s what I’ve captured in this new book. It’s a real privilege to tell the ongoing story of this historic site.”
The new book has been commissioned by the Mayfield Partnership, a public-private venture, comprising LCR the UK Government’s commercial developer, Manchester City Council, Transport for Greater Manchester and regeneration specialist U+I.