Friday, 19 February 2010
re POEM 27
The city’s tunnels
Between Balloon Street
and Miller Street, a network
of tight-lipped subways and bricked-up
air raids occupy the ground below;
shelters which once served Victorian
Mancunians with tunnels linking hidden
dwellings, shops and bunkers. These cellar
dwellars also used busy waterways
as launch points for steam and ferry travel.
In steamier times, around the mid-1930s, these cruising
travelers would have passed arches (built into the Irwell
embankment) heaving with wine merchants, silk-dyers,
printers and cabinet makers - all clacking their cajoles.
Today, the chatter of these sellers is muted -
buried in the city’s tunnels and cellars.