Manchester is the largest city in the north-west of England and one of the most significant economic centres in the UK. With roots reaching back to Roman occupation, Manchester became the first industrialised city in the world during the 18th century and now has one of the strongest economies in Britain. The city also has a strong cultural identity, with a number of influential musicians and performers having emerged from the area like The Smiths, Joy Division and Oasis. Having hosted the Commonwealth Games in 2002, Manchester is recognised as one of the leading destinations in the UK for a number of popular sports, including cycling and football. The city is also home to Manchester City and Manchester United football clubs, two of the best known sports teams in the world.
Setting up your business here
Manchester lies in the heart of England’s north-west, with Liverpool to the west and Leeds to the north-east. All other major cities in the UK, including London, are easily reached from Manchester either by train, road or air transport links. Companies based in the city include a variety of insurers, law firms, accountancy businesses and financial service providers. In recent years Manchester has benefitted from the creation of purpose-built business, retail and entertainment zones like Spinningfields in the city centre and MediaCity, home to the BBC, which is a little further out in Salford Quays. Among the companies with a sizeable presence in Manchester are the pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, the search engine and software powerhouse Google and the accountancy groups Deloitte and KPMG.
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Things to do in Manchester
Manchester is within easy reach of both the Peak District and the Lake District, two of the UK’s most popular and picturesque national parks. If you fancy a little retail therapy, stick to The Arndale in the city centre or The Trafford Centre which is just on the outskirts of the city centre but has shops, restaurants, cinema, bowling and much more on offer. The city has a well-established but varied and thriving nightlife scene catering to most musical tastes. There are dozens of great restaurants across the city, such as the Grand Pacific and Artisan, both of which you’ll find in Spinningfields or if you have time, visit Manchester’s very own China Town which is packed with eateries. For some amazing Spanish tapas try El Rincon de Rafa in the city centre or for some classic British cuisine try Sam’s Chop House near the Manchester Town Hall. Meanwhile, for atmospheric and quality bars, Spinningfields and places like the Oast House are a great option, as are various venues in the Northern Quarter like Odd Bar and Trof.
- Tube lines: N/A
- Mainline stations: Manchester Piccadilly, Manchester Oxford Road
- Nearest motorways: M60, M6, M62
- Nearest airports: Manchester Airport
- Other: Local tram service Metrolink connects much of Greater Manchester to the city centre and MediaCity