Blackfriars Road in Salford crosses Trinity Way, going under the railway line. From the Chapel Street junction this becomes Blackfriars Street and continues up to the River Irwell where Blackfriars Bridge crosses the river in to Manchester. Along Blackfriars Street a few impressive buildings from old Salford remain.
The sandstone three-arched Blackfriars Bridge replaced a previous wooden footbridge and was opened in 1820. The tollbooth on the bridge was removed in 1848.
On the corner of Blackfriars Bridge and chapel Street is the Black Lion Hotel, where John Cooper Clarke gave early performances and the Showmen’s Guild of Great Britain was born. This organisation was founded at the UK Van Dwellers Protection Association in 1889 to protect the rights of fairground workers and changed its name in 1917. The Guild represents travelling funfair businesses and I remembering finding their lovely and moving memorial in the National Memorial Arboretum that remembers the Guild members who died in the First and Second World Wars.
The splendid building in the photograph is the former Baerlein’s warehouse and was built in 1877. The building is listed and today it has been converted to residential use and is known as Textile Apartments. Baerlein & Co were an engineering company that made machinery for the textile industry.
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