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Manchester Is Here - the Symposium/the Celebration

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Symposium and Launch of D/Evolving Manchester

Wednesday 15th June 2016

Room G33 (Lecture Theatre 4)

Manchester Metropolitan University Business School

Chaired by Dave Haslam

Commemorating the 20th anniversary of the ‘Manchester bomb’, widely recognised as the catalyst for Greater Manchester’s twenty-first-century regeneration, we are holding an academic symposium and public-engagement launch on June 15th to celebrate Manchester’s phenomenal redevelopment over the past twenty years. Manchester has changed its fabric and its ‘feel’. It has boomed – in terms of its culture and its economy, as well as the two intertwined – into the UK’s second metropolitan centre. Manchester has taken its place on a global stage and become a global brand: cool, hip, cutting-edge. The arts have flourished, with the rise of the Manchester International Festival drawing crowds from around the world to sit right on the Town Hall steps. The ‘Manchester Miracle’ continues to evolve, fuelled by Northern grit in all its multicultural manifestations.

We now find ourselves on the verge of Greater Manchester Devolution – the next step in the city region’s contemporary evolution. From September 2016 to June 2017 Manchester Metropolitan University invites you to take part in a wide-ranging festival of discussion, exploration and debate on the theme of ‘D/Evolving Manchester’. D/Evolving Manchester Festival is designed to inspire and engage everyone in Greater Manchester, and beyond, with the challenges and opportunities that devolution offers to the region.

We will launch this programme on June 15th with a full day and evening of discussion and celebration:

Daytime panel sessions: 10.00am – 4.00pm

Panel One:

20 Years of Manchester Miracles? The Bomb and Regeneration

This panel will address the socio-economic and cultural regeneration of Manchester over the past 20 years, looking at how the city can best serve its citizens in the future.


  • Jonathan Schofield (Editor, Manchester Confidential; journalist and author)
  • Joanne Massey (Sociology, Manchester Met)
  • Kevin Ward (Human Geography, University of Manchester)
  • Michael Taylor (Co-Founder of ‘Discuss’; External Engagement Advisor, Manchester Met)

Panel Two:

Regional Identity vs. Global Brand: Who is Greater Manchester?

This panel will look at Manchester identities as they relate to music, football and LGBT communities. To what extent do the Premier League, the Factory legacy and the Gay Village promote and complement the multitude of Manchester’s histories of success, and how can we make the most of the manifold futures signposted by the city’s rich history and diverse heritage?


  • Dominique Tessier (Café Historique)
  • Abigail Ward (Manchester District Music Archive)
  • Anthony May (Public Services, Manchester Met)
  • Katie Milestone (Sociology, Manchester Met)
  • Jon Binnie (Human Geography, Manchester Met)


Evening Celebration event: 5.30pm – 9.00pm - separate tickets available here:


Wednesday 15th June 2016

Evening Celebration event: 5.30pm – 8.00pm

Chetham’s School of Music

With Special Guest MC Dave Haslam

Following a day of debate and discussion, please join us for an evening celebrating the spirit, resilience and ingenuity of Greater Manchester.

Hosted in the spectacular environs of Chetham’s School of Music (one of Manchester’s oldest buildings), this event will showcase local and community talent and preview the portfolio of exciting events Manchester Met will be offering as part of its D/Evolving Manchester Festival.

The evening will feature choral performances of Manchester pop songs by the Honour Choir, a presentation by young people from Harpurhey on their documentary about the Manchester Bomb, and poetry from internationally renowned poet Michael Symmons Roberts. Guests will also receive a complimentary copy of the recently published Manchester Met book ‘A New Manchester Alphabet’, featuring poetry and artwork about Manchester, by Manchester Met students.

Programme of the events:

5.30pm – wine reception and exhibition of the ‘New Manchester Alphabet’

6.00pm - Performance by Honour choir

6.10pm – introduction and speeches from Manchester Met Vice Chancellor Professor Malcolm Press and Humanities, Language and Social Science Dean of Faculty Dr Sharon Handley.

6.20pm – Factory Youth Zone presentation

6.40pm – Michael Symmons Roberts poetry reading

7.00pm – Launch of D/Evolving Manchester presentation by Professor Berthold Schoene, Associate Dean for Research, Faculty of Humanities, Languages and Social Science, Manchester Met

7.15pm – Performance by Honour Choir

8.00pm – close

This event is preceeded by a full day symposium at Manchester Met. Separate tickets are here: