The archaeology of the new building
A fascinating glimpse of life in Chorlton-upon-Medlock at the height of the Industrial Revolution was revealed at the site of the building last year. The buried remains of buildings that were cleared during the 1970s have been exposed during an archaeological excavation.
This part of Chorlton-upon-Medlock was transformed in the early nineteenth century from agricultural land to a thriving industrial and residential suburb of Manchester. It all started with the development of the Chorlton Hall estate by a group of local entrepreneurs, who aimed to build a planned suburb centred on a grand new square that became known as All Saints. By 1819, the Salutation pub had been built and was surrounded by newly laid-out streets.
The foundations of a row of terraced houses have been unearthed. A glass floor has been installed in the new building so visitors can view the foundations and get an insight into how the houses were used.
The site was also home to the Bridgewater Music Hall in the 1880s. This was one of numerous small theatres that opened in Victorian Manchester.
In the 1900s the music hall was put to new uses, first as the Bridgewater Chapel or City Mission, and then as a boxing stadium known as the City Athletic Club, before being converted to the Bridgewater Electric Picture Palace in 1914. The interior retained many of the features of the theatre until the 1970s, but was damaged by vandalism and finally destroyed by fire.
MMUnion’s £2m wish campaign: we ask, and you tell us, what you want from your union building
MMUnion submits a business case to MMU for the re-development of our Oxford Road building
The university recognises the need to improve our building and commits to invest £2m
Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, the architects behind the new state-of-the-art Business School and Student Hub, appointed to carry out a feasibility study for the refurbishment
The feasibility study finds the cost of refurbishing the Oxford Road building prohibitive, putting the project in doubt
The Salutation car park is identified as a good location for the union, the university decides to invest in a purpose-built £10m building on that site
The architects use your comments, thoughts and ideas from the £2m wish campaign as inspiration to design the new building
Planning permission granted
Exploratory archaeological dig takes place on-site
Diggers break ground to lay the foundations
Thirteen months for the build, from foundations to finishing touches. There will be plenty of opportunities to get involved in the interior design of your new spaces
Welcome to the future: your new state-of-the-art union building open and ready to explore
Serving great value food and drink all day and night, plus entertainment, music and sport
Roughly the size of two tennis courts, a versatile space that can be dressed to suit any occasion – gigs, events, exhibitions, film screenings, sport...
Central welcome and information point
Fresh food and hot drinks to eat in or takeaway
All the essentials: stationery, art materials, drinks, snacks and more
Low cost, sustainable bike hire and repair
Multifunctional conference and event space
Controls audio-visual, sound and lighting throughout the building
Representation and campaigning: here to listen to your ideas, thoughts and opinions and to help you implement them
Overlooking central hall
One stop shop for volunteering, sport, societies and halls committees
Conveniently located on the first floor
Somewhere to retreat to, relax, reflect and study between lectures – with PC access
Free, flexible and bookable spaces
Mirrored wall and dance bar, wooden floor and green screen – great for dance, martial arts and filming
Sound proofed section for radio, media production and editing space, and controls linked to DJ booth and screens around the building
Dispensing food and drink out-of-hours and out-of-term time
Free, independent and impartial advice
Free, flexible and bookable spaces
Staff room and open plan office