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Great Days Out
Great Days Out
Castlefield Guide

£ At a Price
 by Jonathan Schofield


Granada Studios

Please note that Granada Studios is now closed, the information below is for archival purposes. TourWater Street (round the corner from Liverpool Road)
Opening times vary with the time of the year so check ahead.

The tour is always closed on Mondays to allow filming on the set of the soap opera Coronation Street.

Tel: 0161 832 9090/832 4999.
Price: £14.99 adults, £9.99 concessions.
You can get up to £5 off per person if you get the voucher leaflet from the Tourist Information Office, St Peter's Square.

Again a visit of at least four hours is recommended. The studios tour contains the sets of famous productions such as Moll Flanders and Sherlock Holmes and a convincing reconstruction of the Houses of Commons built for the programme First Amongst Equals.

There are interactive galleries looking at the future of broadcasting and an excellent behind-the-scenes-tour looking at the tricks of special effects and make-up. In most areas there are regular shows to better illustrate the nature of show-biz. You can also frighten yourself daft on some of the more traditonal theme park rides such as Aliens where the chairs lurch every which way. Best of all for masochists is the Skytrak which involves being strapped into a bizarre contraption and whizzed around head first, lying on your belly. Skytrak is the world's first solocoaster.

Despite the above most of the 800,000 visitors each year come to see Coronation Street. Some people stroll the little cobbled lane surrounded by terrace houses and post letters through the door to the characters they believe live there. When the studios first opened an old lady walked up and down the street and then took her shoes off, saying she'd never wear them again. Close by you can stuff your pockets with souvenirs or even walk down to the Rover's Return and enjoy a pint of Newton and Ridley and gorge yourself on one of Betty's Lancashire Hotpots.

The "street" began in 1960 from a script by Tony Warren, it is the longest running TV soap opera in the world.If you want to pry on the filming of Coronation Street then look through one of the windows in the corner of the Fibres, Fabrics and Fashions in the Museum of Science and Industry on a Monday. The Museum is the studios tour neighbour and affords a view of the end of Rosamund Street.

Incidentally, Granade is the only independent TV company still operating of those which founded commercial TV. It began in 1956 in purpose built studios (still there) the brainchild of the Bernstein brothers. Sydney and Cecil. The former brother gave the company its name in honour of his favourite town in Spain. Other well known programmes include,Cracker, Prime Suspect and earlier Brideshead Revisited.

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