Clearing the way

2013-05-08 00.14.06

Oxford Road and the Mancunian Way. Shops, housing and industrial buildings around Oxford Road were cleared to make way for the future Manchester Polytechnic.

Subsequent to the 1956 White Paper on Technical Education, the government committed itself to building a tranche of new technical colleges. Manchester’s LEA, lacking a centrally located municipal technical college, proposed creating a new Central College of Technology; a substantial site off Oxford Road had been identified in an area once dominated by the cotton mills of the Birley family and the Macintosh Rubber Factory. The Ministry of Education (MoE) was generally supportive of the LEA’s proposal, but the acquisition of the mostly residential site required a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO). Home-owners and local small businesses were reluctant to sell, and the subsequent objections resulted in a Public Inquiry. This took place on 30th October, 1958


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