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Drought on Deansgate – at last

Sleuth and the puddle that was hung out to dry

Published on May 13th 2009.

Drought on Deansgate – at last
We're going to give ourselves a pat on the back again. And we don’t want you pouring cold water over it.

You see we’ve had lots of emails about the perma-puddle of central Manchester: rainclouds of comment from our readers.

These referred to the famous puddle close to John Rylands Library on Deansgate. This wasn’t any old puddle but one which swamped the whole of the pedestrian crossing leading to Spinningfields and businesses such as the MEN and RBS.

And the remarkable thing was that for more than a year it never went away. There could be hosepipe bans in force and the puddle would obstinately remain, exactly in the wrong place at a pedestrian crossing.

The last straw was when we received this letter from a southern visitor which read: ‘Dear Sirs, I arrived in Manchester in a shower of rain, I stepped in a puddle right up to my middle. I won’t come back again. Yours, Dr Foster.’

So we put the puddle in Sleuth a month ago and hey presto it’s now been sorted. Our paragraph in Sleuth clearly helped to focus minds. Well done to the lads with the tarmac and the deep wellies.

This follows other ‘backyard’ successes for Confidential. To name but a few we've had the out of hours parking charges battle, the Trafford Wharf litter pick-up success and the promise of improvements at the dismal Victoria Station buffet. Plus there are the works in progress such as the on-going Castlefield campaign. As we say, to name but a few.

What we're getting at is this.

If you’ve got any backyard issues that you’d like Confidential to shine a spotlight upon let us know. We’ll see if it’s for us, and as with all our campaigns, it doesn’t matter how small or large the story is, if we think it's worth chasing we’ll give it a go. A puddle might seem trivial but it was a nuisance and a minor embarrassment for the city, helping to get rid of it is worthwhile. Given the way we can reach people we think we're the perfect vehicle to take up your irks and irritations and get results.

Email sleuth@planetconfidential.co.uk if you've got something on your mind.

One last thing: Sleuth was looking through an old poetry book the other day which included this decades old versifying from the poet Adrian Mitchell. Sleuth reckons Mitchell must have had a premonition of our Deansgate friend before writing: ‘Watch your step – I’m drenched’.

In Manchester there are a thousand puddles.
Bus-queue puddles poised on slanting paving stones,
Railway puddles slouching outside stations,
Cinema puddles in ambush at the exits,
Zebra-crossing puddles in dips of the dark stripes --
They lurk in the murk
Of the north-western evening
For the sake of their notorious joke,
Their only joke -- to soak
The tights or trousers of the citizens.
Each splash and consequent curse is echoed by
One thousand dark Mancunian puddle chuckles.

In Manchester there lives the King of Puddles,
Master of Miniature Muck Lakes,
The Shah of Slosh, Splendifero of Splash,
Prince, Pasha and Pope of Puddledom.
Where? Somewhere. The rain-headed ruler
Lies doggo, incognito,
Disguised as an average, accidental mini-pool.
He is as scared as any other emperor,
For one night, all his soiled and soggy victims
Might storm his streets, assassination in their minds,
A thousand rolls of blotting paper in their hands,
And drink his shadowed, one-joke life away.

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8 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

chuck townsendMay 13th 2009.

EDITORIALLY REMOVED for being inappropriate and stupid

Rob CotterillMay 13th 2009.

Congratulations Mancon! For your next trick, do you fancy having a crack at getting the puddle an the corner of Whitworth Street and Sackville Street?

philtaylorphotoMay 13th 2009.

Can you make the Radisson Edwardian hotel realise that the 'brothel lighting in Opus One is bloody awful?

burt CodeineMay 13th 2009.

And above - can you work your magic on Manchester's rooftop weed/shrubbery situation? There's a veritable forest up there on the 5/6th floors of Victoriana/Original TM.

ChickMay 13th 2009.

Gawd, someone's on a role so early this Saturday morning. Chuck and his three alta egos (so far) obviously fell out of bed on the wrong side. What exactly is your point?

AnnieMay 13th 2009.

Oxford road is full of horrendous puddles, I have seen many people drenched by the buses and have on occasion been the victim :(

MatMay 13th 2009.

Can you see if you can do anything about the horrible security portakabin at the entrance to Cooper Street, by the back entrance of the Town Hall? Obviously there needs to be something there for security purposes, but does it have to be an ugly temporary building? It's been there for years. The Town Hall security people deserve a permanent home, and one which fits in with its surroundings.

AnonymousMay 13th 2009.

There is a serious puddle problem at the bus stop of the Metrolink No.1 Bus, at (New) York Street.I often see that elderly persons could not get in or off the bus because of a large puddle. The drivers do not seem to be care about this, surprisingly.

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