The Trafford Centre

The Trafford Centre

Manchester's Trafford Park was the first industrial estate in the world, created more than 100 years ago when the region was devoted to manufacturing and industrial production.  Second only to the mighty Ruhr region of Germany, between the wars it had more than 500,000 people working within its factories.  However, all this industrial heritage is disregarded in this perverse architectural extravaganza, completely at odds with the Mancunian landscape.  Opened in 1998, the Trafford Centre is a 600 million retail and leisure complex boasting 280 retail outlets, totalling 3 miles of shop fronts and employing more than 7000 people.  Egypt, Venice, New Orleans and China are equally debased in themed shopping 'experiences'.  In the Egyptian area, large sarcophagi line the walls and the toilets are decorated with hieroglyphics.  An estimated 500,000 people visit the centre in a normal week and to venture there during the pre-Christmas shopping frenzy is an experience not for the feint hearted.  If you are a lover of shopping and kitsch, rejoice!  If you are a lover of architecture "Look upon these works, ye mighty, and despair".
The Trafford Centre