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The Old Wellington, Exchange Square, Manchester

Brian Smith

Posted on Sun 24 Mar 2019

My wife and I had an overnight stay in Manchester on Friday to see the sights and what sights there are. It's vibrant, eclectic, cosmopolitan, progressive and has an undertone of confidence and positivity about itself; all you'd want in your city. No-one was driving on the Friday so our itinerary owed more to the Good Beer Guide than the Arts Council. Nevertheless, if you like your interiors with glazed ceramics, marble, etched glass, mahogany, brass, terrazzo and plenty of history, all viewed through a glass of cask ale, then try the Circus Tavern, Peveril of the Peak, The Briton's Protection, Mr Thomas's Chop House, the Marble Arch and throw in an extraordinary flaking ceiling at the Crown & Kettle, so crumbly in the Tap Room it's under-drawn with a safety net. And to eat, we tried the One Plus Chinese restaurant where the menus rotate regularly and so does the food, literally, on a Sushi style conveyor; the difference being you cook your own food in front of you in a bubbling broth of your choice; hectic at first until we got the hang of multi-tasking. Recommended.
Over the weekend we managed a visit to the Royal Exchange Theatre, with its magnificent studio theatre slung like a steel and glass spider in its web from the four columns supporting the dome; Manchester Art Gallery tho' the queue for Leonardo was too long to wait; endless quality buskers; the Chinese and Gay quarters; a dubious after-dark walk along the canal; and the Science & Industry Museum where Stevenson's Rocket was in temporary residence.
I was in two minds whether to make the attached sketch vignette because of its relative complexity in a tight schedule but went for it. The half-timbered enclave with a peep thro' to the Cathedral behind obviously makes a single point perspective. I drew with a 0.1 Uni Pin waterproof fine liner in my 7" square Tiger sketch book; finished with a couple of 2B/3B sketching pencils (half price box of 12 mixed grades, £2.49 from W H Smith in the Arndale Centre)

The Old Wellington, Exchange Square, Manchester


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  • I love your description of my fine city. Glad you enjoyed your stay and saw it for the beautiful place it is. Love your sketch, it looks exactly like the place it's ment to be. It's mental there on a sunny day you can't get a seat for love nor money, it's packed to the brim. Next time you come you must try around spinningfields and the oasthouse especially in summer when they have the outdoor bands on. There's also loads of little back street boozers tucked away hidden from the tourists, that are amazing. Please also give Manchester museum a visit and say hello to our t-rex.

    Posted by Jennifer Edwards on Fri 29 Mar 05:30:09