I am a born and bred Mancunian and although I think I know quite a lot about my city, there are always little hidden pockets, that always take me by surprise.
Last week I was working with a photographer who told me about a Moravian settlement in East Manchester on the borders of Tameside, that he said I would love and so yesterday as we were heading over that way for a shopping trip to Ikea, we put the postcode of the settlement into google maps and headed over there.
The first indication that you are entering into some where quite special as you turn the corner off Fairfield Road, is an original Victorian post box and two large stone pillars at the entrance of what leads you into a cobbled square. The square opens up to a village of beautiful untouched Georgian houses built by the Moravian settlers in1785. The cobbled streets are lit by the original cast iron street lamps and there is a beautiful old school, church and college building. The area is surrounded by fields and unmade pathways. Its unbelievable to think that in this over developed part of Manchester, there is such a hidden world tucked away.
Originally the settlers, from Moravia, near Bohemia in the Czech Republic. had their own self sufficient village with an inn, shop, farm, laundry and doctor but most of the buildings have now been turned into residential properties. There are also more recent additions of houses built around the 1930’s but the whole area is like taking a step back in time to a simpler life, the only modern addition being the cars parked in the centre of the village.
If you’re interested in visiting the village, they do have open days when they have guided tours, which you can find here. It’s a lovely way to spend an hour or two walking around with only the sound of bird song and the church bells, you feel like you truly have stepped back in time,