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Icon of a city dies

The man who throughout his life championed Manchester and what Manchester is all about, has died following a battle against cancer.

Published on August 10th 2007.


Icon of a city dies

Anthony Wilson died in Christies hospital on Friday evening surrounded by family and friends. The man who throughout his life championed Manchester and what Manchester is all about, died following a battle against cancer. Wilson had a kidney removed because of the disease earlier this year and passed away just after 6pm following a heart attack on Thursday night. He was 57 years old.

The Salford-born entrepreneur founded Factory Music and was key to the formulation of Joy Division and subsequently New Order and Happy Mondays as well as helping to launch the Hacienda nightclub. He was well known for his TV and radio work particularly at Granada. He was famous internationally for his music work, the In the City convention every autumn and his strength of character, sharp mind and fierce wit. Always at the forefront of opinion he was portrayed in Michael Winterbottom´s 2002 film, 24 Hour Party People, by Steve Coogan.

Wilson was an intellectual who knew how to be popularist but was individual enough to always be himself. Because of this he often - always - courted controversy. But he had real presence, real determination and achieved a great deal often through methods contrary to what other people thought the ´correct´way in which to proceed. Because of this he received no official honours from either the country or Manchester or Salford. Not that he probably would have accepted them.

Nick-named Mr Manchester, he was much much more than this. He was a universal man of a million interests who stuck by the city and its radical traditions. A true Renaissance man for our times, Anthony H Wilson is a great loss to his family, his friends and the cities of Manchester and Salford. There was no-one like him and he leaves a huge gap. (JS)

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

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

What a shock. So sad. Knew he was ill but wasn't expecting this. God bless him.

hazel royAugust 10th 2007.

The courage to speak out against the tide, to be an individual and to never court popularity if it is at the expense of what you believe is rare enough. Those that have the courage of their convictions and are prepared to court controversy could count Tony Wilsons among their number. His loss for this reason is incalcuable. The city needs controversial champions who fight the sychophancy or 'jobs worth 'attitude which is too frequently part of public life. Tony encouraged people to be boat rockers. I applaud his fighting spirit and mourn his loss at such a relatively young age. Manchester has lost a real fighter and friend.

PTAugust 10th 2007.

legend

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

My thoughts are with Oliver and family at this sad time. God Bless.

aggsAugust 10th 2007.

Good luck with your next venture - I'm sure it'll be a success. Manchester will be poorer for the loss of TW

shiveringgoatAugust 10th 2007.

R.I.P Tony Wilson - you inspired more than a generation and will be sadly missed - I have felt so moved by his passing as in this age of bland 'celebrification' Tony was a true individual and we need people like this to help realise what life is about, more than ever before!The last time I saw him he was speaking in London and I arrived a little early and asked him to sign the book he wrote based on 24 Hour Party People. Tony was sat down alone writing something so I approached him and he kindly took my book wrote something in it and gave it me back and thanked me. When I opened it he had written 'ALL LIES - Tony Wilson!" - Superb! he was a rebel and always looking for an opportunity to have some fun...he is sadly missed on many different levels.Best Goat:)

SasAugust 10th 2007.

Tony was a beacon of hope when Manchester was just another dot on the landscape. Opinionated? Sure, but Manchester wouldn't be where it is now if he hadn't championed it the way he did. We've every reason to be proud that he lived. He made a difference on his arrival just as he will with his departure. My deepest sympathy and thoughts to his family.

James Chapman-KellyAugust 10th 2007.

Troubadour Says thanks for just being you. Miss ya.

Mark R garnerAugust 10th 2007.

Tony. Thank you for the hug at The Big Chip Awards, you lying ****er. How special did I feel? Whatever is in your head, forget it. Whatever is in your hand give it whatever is to be your fate, face it. You died well, brother. I for one had an education every time.Mark Garner.

MantexAugust 10th 2007.

A sad loss indeed. But can anyone explain why somebody who created a world-renowned nightclub and a seminal record company managed to make a financial bollocks of both of them?

JanieAugust 10th 2007.

I feel robbed. My emotions are all over the place and I truly feel like I've lost a member of my family. I'm hurt and angry that the man who did so much to positively raise the profile of Manchester was snubbed by a bunch of faceless bureaucrats because he stayed within the post code he loved. Thanks for being ours, Tony and thanks for all the memories we can share. Rest in peace. Janie xxx

John and Vera GuinanAugust 10th 2007.

very sad , Tony Wilson was a really nice guy, one of the few acceptable mancunians in liverpool. please accept our condolences.yes we are scousers.

Jay McCrearyAugust 10th 2007.

Today is a day of sorrow and change in the city of Manchester.On the evening of Friday 10th August 2007, Anthony "Tony" Wilson died in Christies Hospital of a heart attack, following months of treatment for his cancer.After meeting a wide variety of scumballs and up their own arse media wankers, it was a refreshing change for me to meet and work with Tony. I worked with him on his recent Talk of The Town shows on Saturday mornings on BBC Radio Manchester for over a year until he became too ill to do them. I was his tech-op, driving his outside broadcast desk from the Cornerhouse every week. At the end of every show without fail, he would come over and shake my hand and thank me, before leaving. He was a true gent, one of the finest and most sincere people who remained in broadcasting. I will always remember him for that.He fought the fight of Manchester and made us stand out. I suppose we have to now continue where he left it, because no one person will ever take his place. As he said at the end of almost every show, we should "keep the faith."My thoughts go out to Yvette, and his two children who I only know as "Olly" and "Izzy." You are lucky to have had such a great and generous man in your lives.Finally, Tony always stuck by one rule, and I loved the way it was reinforced. He always said "All our bands have the freedom to..." which was not only unique, but is one of the things he will always be remembered for, especially by the wide variety of music acts he helped support and give birth to. Well Tony has that freedom now. And I'm just sorry it happened so early in his life.If you're not sure what I'm talking about, or how Tony's sentence should end, then in the words of the great man himself "you should probably read more."We will all miss you, Tony.Rest peacefully, farewell.

Ged TyrrellAugust 10th 2007.

At the time, when I was 15, I did not appreciate the significance of this man. Yet, one of his bands was having tremendous influence on my life singing the real alternative to the love being portrayed by Duran Duran and the like. This 'real world' view held in Joy Division, New Order and the other great Manc bands of the 90's was a thread that could be easily attributed to this man. This 'real world' experience coming through in the music, not pretentious, is exactly what not only made it all so distinctive but also made the music move real people in a way they could relate to. This, together with the determination of this man and other like him in the city at the time was the catalyst to realise our greatness not only in this country but the world. Long live Manchester and long live Tony Wilson (sorry, Anthony) we will not forget you and your spirit lives on and is reflected in so many of us.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

You don't realise how much you like someone until they're gone. He did so much for the city and our generation. I thank him for planting the seed that grew on to make our city the coolest in the world.The man deserves a statue!Deepest sympathy to his family x

kellyAugust 10th 2007.

god bless u Tony absolutely cannot beleive what u have had to go through! will never ever forget that thanks to u Manchester is the capital of the world in my eyes! thanks for all those great years of music that will stay with me for ever! xx

BenfordAugust 10th 2007.

A legend, pure and simple.I might not always have agreed with what he had to say, but at least he had his own opinions and they were always worth listening to.RIP Anthony H.

kgbAugust 10th 2007.

I found myself surprisingly saddened by this news. Tony probably did more to put Manchester on the map than anyone in recent history. Our whole popular culture of the last several decades would probably have been quite different (and much the poorer) without him.

Phil KorbelAugust 10th 2007.

The headlines today keep the memories coming back. Back in the day - an early In The City - we got involved in making the jingle package for their radio station. It was pretty derogatory to most mainstream radio in the city - as well making sure that the event's ego didnt go un-pricked. One evening, getting into a lift, who should be there but Tony and Fergal Sharkey - no doubt planning the future of the UK music industry. Ever generous, Tony broke off his conversation with Sharkey to make the introductions. It was a mark of his spirit that he also mentioned that one of our jingles made light of Tony's fashion sense - with a smile too.Gentleman? Buffoon? Genius? I'd like to think all three - we need to be sure that his rebellious flame doesnt go out. You'll be missed.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Tony, you did so much for Manchester, its music and its people...you will be sadly missed. Thank you Mr Manchester...RIP

jmAugust 10th 2007.

first big bernard, now tony. 2 legends of manchester gone in such a short space of time. RIP guys - you did us proud.

APAugust 10th 2007.

A truly inspirational man that will always be remembered.

PeteAugust 10th 2007.

Young people now flock to this city to be students when the same courses are offered all over the UK. They want to come to Manchester. You did that.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

I am a scouser, you were a true Manc. I always respected you, God bless you Tony. The North West has lost a real hero.

Eddy RheadAugust 10th 2007.

I am truly saddened to know Tony has gone. He was a great Salfordian but more importantly he was a great man. He can leave us, safe in the knowledge that he left a proud legacy and I, for one, will always be grateful to him for everything he did for us.

BryAugust 10th 2007.

He was soo young! I walked passed him on the street last year and he looked fighting fit, life is soo short and uncertain, i'm truly saddened to hear this sad news, my thoughts are with Anthony's family and friends at this time, he is a character that Manchester will sorely miss :.(...

JulieAugust 10th 2007.

Many I speak to feel worse about Tony Wilson's death than any national icon.Draws a massive close to a Manchester thats been dropped and rebuilt as a plastic replica of Madchester.

AndyAugust 10th 2007.

generous, visionary, loyal and like all of us, gloriously flawed. he was one of the main reasons I and many others came and stayed in manchester. if i don't get invited to his memorial party then i'm having one myself.

lucyAugust 10th 2007.

A true hero of Manchester, will be sadly missed by all i partied at the hacienda thank you tony

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Tony was Manchester's messiah. He'll be sadly missed.

jomorrey2525@hotmail.co.ukAugust 10th 2007.

Tony Wilson was always a voice of the 80's to me - he first showcased Debbie Harry to us on the Friday follow-upto Friday night Granada Reports...I remember he gave hewr a carnation flower and was so besotted with her looks and accent that it was embarrassing.. but that was Tony up and dressed - always a rebel - never humdrum - live on Big Man And Prosper!!!PROSPER

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

What a sad, sad day. He was a great patron of the arts, culture and all things cool. An influence who will be sadly missed.........

Robert FosterAugust 10th 2007.

Tony put Manchester and the North West region on the map in so many ways. He was and will continue to be an inspiration and a catalyst to many. I worked with Tony many times from the eighties to until just recently. He was always opinionated certainly, but that was a great mark of the man, and he was always warm, genuine and passionate. Tony contributed much of significance to the region and to music. He is a great loss, but he will never be forgotten.

scawthopAugust 10th 2007.

A great man and will be sadly missed by all, my thoughts go out to his family.R.O.P

Tina BaileyAugust 10th 2007.

I only met the guy once, what a lovely chap. Until reading this I did not really understand all he had achieved.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Goodnight & God bless Tony. You'll always be remembered 'Mr Manchester'.So young, so sad!

JaneAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester will not be the same without him, what he did for the music industry and our city will not be forgotten !

John NuttallAugust 10th 2007.

I managed Factory Records Producer, Martin Hannett and whilst it's fairly well known that a few kindhearted individuals in the music business have been bankrolling Tony's treatment, what few people know is that Tony did something very similar for Martin when he was on hard times. This, despite the fact that Martin and Tony had had an acrimonious legal dispute over Factory. Tony not only bore no ill will towards Martin but quietly tried to help him. You can judge the mettle of a man by the way he treats you when you're at a low ebb and Tony showed a different side to him than the public image.It's remarkable for one man to have made such an impact on the image and lifestyle of his city. Manchester would be a very different place today without Tony. He disrupted the heliocentric London based music industry and made the bastards travel out of their comfort zone.I'm sure that his family must be drawing a great deal of comfort from the outpouring of respect for Tony and his achievements.

cliff kahuna, LiverpoolAugust 10th 2007.

It's not only Manchester that will mourn the loss of Tony Wilson but the whole of the North West. One only has to look back at the last thirty years to recall times when Tony entered our lives through different mediums, be it news reporting, record companies, nightclubs, documentarys, sticking up for the North West in general. He was an icon that it will be hard to replace. I, and a lot of people in Liverpool, had a lot of respect for Tony Wilson, not just for the person he was, but for the effect he had on our lives. RIP Tony, a Salford lad, a Manchester lad, a Northern Lad. Cliff Kahuna

KAugust 10th 2007.

Get over it, hes just another man whos dead.

hazel royAugust 10th 2007.

The courage to speak out against the tide, to be an individual and to never court popularity if it is at the expense of what you believe is rare enough. Those that have the courage of their convictions and are prepared to court controversy could count Tony Wilsons among their number. His loss for this reason is incalculable. The city needs controversial champions who fight the sychophancy or 'jobs worth 'attitude which is too frequently part of public life. Tony encouraged people to be boat rockers. I applaud his fighting spirit and mourn his loss at such a relatively young age. Manchester has lost a real fighter and friend.

NovanglusAugust 10th 2007.

A true hero of Manchester, a champion who proved London isn't all that! A person who will be forever remembered in the city he loved.

Phil BurkeAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester’s Club Scene pays tribute to "Mr Manchester" Tony Wilson RIP Members of Manchester Pub & Club Network were shocked to hear the sad news of “Mr Manchester “and Music mogul Mr Anthony Wilson Phil Burke spokesperson for the Network said that Tony was a great role model and an inspiration to the Club scene in central Manchester for many years, Burke says that Anthony’s club The Hacienda was the product of Manchester - its people, its mood and its time. From an initial idea by Rob Gretton (manager of Joy Division), and the TV broadcaster and music entrepreneur Anthony Wilson, the nightclub was set up as a then "alternative" platform and venue for new bands, many of whom had found difficulty in performing due to a broad antipathy to their music, largely on account of its subversive qualities. Bands like New Order and Joy Division got their first breaks at the club after it opened in 1982. It differed enormously from other more conventional discos. It was part of the Factory Communications organisation (FAC51) and included Anthony Wilson (chairman, promoter, shareholder of Hacienda, and Granada Television presenter), Howard Jones (part-founder and manager of the club), Rob Gretton (Director and shareholder of the Hacienda) and others involved in local music. It reflected local new trends in music and dancing - Acid House, Indie, punkish, wild and weird, encompassing gay and lesbian nights, it soon developed a devoted northern club culture following. Anthony who did so much for his beloved city was known as “Mr Manchester” by the thousands of people who knew him, he devoted much of his life to championing Manchester’s Cause He will be solely missed by the thousands of people who had the pleasure of working with him in many of his ventures and who knew him as just plain old Anthony

nick johnsonAugust 10th 2007.

Astute, ahead of his time, arrogant, clever, witty and influencial. Tony for me personified Manchester and was the leader in turning the city into the cultural capital of England, we have a hell of a lot to be grateful for, and we must remember the legacy he has left behind. He never turned his back on the city he loved, shame he was a red though....

poetmanAugust 10th 2007.

TONYLife is so fragile like a leaf on a treeIt hangs there till it falls, no more we will be.We are left with the memories, pictures in our mindA time to remember for those dear ones left behind.A time for reflection, of those memories we keep The loved one we’ve lost he would not want us to weep.Let’s rejoice for his lifetime, in his time loved by allOh why did his leaf pick this time to fall? Gordon.W.Milward9th February 2007

sgAugust 10th 2007.

To an honourable man. Godspeed

SandyAugust 10th 2007.

He was the face of Mcr, put the city on the map in a big way. A visonary. He was honest (& sometimes went on with himself!) but he was defo true to himself & to Manchester. The people of Mcr are gonna miss u Tony x

Pat CliftAugust 10th 2007.

I am an elderly lady but I ferried my daughter to the Hacienda and many other venues in Manchester the music scene was great thanks to people like Tony she had the time of her life as did I watching her I feel so very sad life is so unfair condolonces t his family

JenAugust 10th 2007.

Tony has done so many great things for manchester. He will always be remembered for influence on the manchester music scene to name but one. His true spirit shone through most recentley however in his battle to make people aware of the drug sutent, which he and many others had been denied. He had his own battle to fight, but he took up the fight for so many others. It proves he was one of the greats. Tony your battle's are over, but manchester will carry them on with you at it's heart and mind. RIP Anthony "H" Wilson

DamyonAugust 10th 2007.

A dynamo in life, your trail of energy is infused in the city's legacy for us all to enjoy.Thank you Tony. RIP

RuthAugust 10th 2007.

Tony Wilson will always be remembered as Mr Manchester. He was an institution in himself. Surely a statute will be erected to honour and commemorate a man who put a great city on the worldwide map. God bless Tony. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your loved ones you so sadly have left behind.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Shame!

Dave Carter, LevenshulmeAugust 10th 2007.

It was such a shock to hear the news about Tony on Friday night. We all remember what an amazing contribution he made to Manchester and the music scene but he also did a lot more, supporting people with ideas about technology and how to live in the digital world. From 1981 when he supported us with the People March for Jobs to 1991 when we launched Manchester’s first foray into the digital world with the Manchester Host and Tony was there banging the drum for why couldn’t we have fibre into every building, just like factories used to have their own railways running into their buildings to connect them to the world. His idea for a “Festival of the Universal Machine” to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first real computer (with a stored program) kicked off what became the Computer 50 and Digital Summer celebrations in 1998. Within ‘In The City’ he came up with ‘Interactive City’ to look at the way digital technologies are changing the world. Just a few weeks ago he was in our office with Yvette looking at what we are doing to create Manchester in Second Life and having the same conversations. In spite of his illness he came along to MC this year’s Big Chip Awards and all of the fire was still there. I too loved the music, joined the Hacienda as soon as it opened (I think I was member number 144) and loved the idea that “the Hacienda must be built” (youngsters please look up ‘the situationists’ on Wikipedia). My most enduring memories of Tony will, however, be his ideas, sometimes crazy, always different and often inspirational, and the real commitment he had to this city, to the people he supported and to the utopian idealism that is so sadly lacking today and so very much needed. I just want to say thank you for the laughs, the ideas and the support that you gave to me and to what we are trying to do today in creating this Digital City. My thoughts and heart-felt condolences go out to his family and friends.

Richard CollinsAugust 10th 2007.

What a sad loss. I passed the bbc on thursday and saw the big bbc radio manchester poster with him on and wondered how he was doing. All the work he did for manchester, including the factory and hacienda stuff has put us on the map in recent history. Best wishes and condolences to all. RIP Mr Wilson.

wilbarAugust 10th 2007.

I feel so extraordinarySomethings got a hold on meI get this feeling I'm in motionA sudden sense of libertyThe chances are we've gone too farYou took my time and you took my moneyNow I fear you've left me standingIn a world thats so demandingI used to think that the day would never comeId see delight in the shade of the morning sunMy morning sun is the drug that brings me nearTo the childhood I lost, replaced by fearI used to think that the day would never comeThat my life would depend on the morning sun...Manchester will miss you-sincere wishes to your family.RIP Tony Wilson x

JohnAugust 10th 2007.

Thank you, Tony.

Martin JansonAugust 10th 2007.

I am 45 and Tony has always been around in my life. On the TV, radio at gigs, at the cornerhouse, in bars. I was a member of the Hac. in the early days (before it went dance crazy). I loved Joy Division, New Order, and the Mondays and the whole Factory scene. I was a regular at the In The City events. I always stuck up for him when people took delight in slagging him off. He certainly will be missed by me and many others.

Mike BAugust 10th 2007.

A true legend who worked tirelessly to promote this great city and it's music.RIP Anthony H Wilson

Mark FitzAugust 10th 2007.

He was a great ambassador for Manchester and will be very sorely missed. Thoughts go out to his family - a great loss :-(

lindaAugust 10th 2007.

This was a shock - I knew he was ill, but didn't expect this.Tony changed the face of music in Manchester and influenced my taste in music from my early teens - Factory were one of the best indie labels ever, he was a true racaunnter and wit and he will be sadly missed he was a great man - who was always entertaining and courting debate,my sympathies to his wife and familyRIP Tony - you were a great man

UrbisAugust 10th 2007.

He was our godfather. Even though less than impressed with how the Urbis project initially came out, he continued to be involved, with all his trademark enthusiasm, humour, wit and intellect. I'll remember the arguments, the gossip, the consummate journalist. We'll be doing something to remember him, though not sure what...

ChrisAugust 10th 2007.

He was alright that Tony Wilson

Vicky SJMAugust 10th 2007.

The true Mr Manchester...such a kind, generous, thoughtful man so totally passionate about this city and everything it stands for. Hope this shakes a few of us up. Such a kind man to me during In The City since the start!!! Life is so, so short. God Bless. XXX

CathyAugust 10th 2007.

I met Tony once when his daughter was at a nursery where I worked. He was gentle, kind and unassuming, and obviously loved his daughter very much. Not a side of him that the public saw, but to me it typifies a man who always stood up for what is good. Manchester isn't about big business and copying London, it's about the people, the culture and the community, and Tony was always on the side of the community. A unique man, he'll be sadly missed. His like don't come around often. Don't rest in peace, you stir things up in heaven and improve it!

PaulAugust 10th 2007.

The memories I cherish from the late eighties and early nineties Manchester scene are down to this man thanks Tony and RIP

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

20 years ago I adopted this city as my home and was amazed at it's vibrancy and vitality. Unbeknownst to me then,(a slightly ignorant southerner) Anthony H was one of the leaders in creating that aura within Manchester. And as I got to know him over the years, albeit just a little, I was amazed at the warmth and the unending passion he had for the city and the people of the city. It was palpable and he made you feel proud to be a part of it. Manchester's gonna miss you Tony.

bigjohnukAugust 10th 2007.

Tony has been the so much for Manchester, both for Music and Media. So many of us have grown up with him and have so many memories. It is such a lost to the City of Manchester. I fee lwe will always remember him. City must do something for Tony so that he is never forgotten.

markAugust 10th 2007.

i didn't know him very well. was a friend of a friend. he came to my flat a few times though and i visited his a few times. he was always charming and conversations were always an education! i know he had lots of friends who cared for him deeply and even those who met him casually always commented on what a nice man he was. on top of that, he perhaps unwittingly shaped manchester as it exists now and most importantly for me, gave us the hacienda. what a guy

HelenAugust 10th 2007.

I really loved AHW. He was always a gent when you met him. I liked the real man never mind the hype. With love to Yvette.

Christine ParkerAugust 10th 2007.

Tone Wilson was an extraordinary man. He and his partner Yvette lived in Bolton for a short while next door to my parents and they were a constant source of joy. After my mothers untimely death , they both moved away , but Tony continued to visit and phone my Father on a regular basis , offering friendship , laughter and stimulating , thought provoking conversation.This act had nothing to do with fame , money of power , but was rather the selfless act of a genuine caring human being. I will never forget it and I will always love him for it. Rest in peace Tony.

Andy MurrayAugust 10th 2007.

He's been one of the architects of modern Manchester, I think. God bless him, he didn't half make a difference. RIP, Tony.

ceefaxAugust 10th 2007.

He interviewed me once. I found him very rude.

liz birkbeckAugust 10th 2007.

A massive shock, didn't really know him, but obviously heard and saw the debates, the TV shows, the film, the award ceromonies and the music. His passion and drive for everything Manchester was inspiring and real. Will anyone else be able to match that kind of commitment on a non selfish level. Our condolences to the family.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

i'm so saddened to hear of his death. he was one of the greatest ever influences from Manchester, may he live on in the music he helped create - R.I.P. Tony Wilson

Ronnie WilliamsAugust 10th 2007.

Not just a champion of Manchester, but a champion of the North West. I met him some years ago while he was filming in Liverpool and his knowledge of the history of the place was amazing. The TV series he presented about the history of the North West four or five years ago deserves to be repeated. There should be a statue to him in the centre of Salford, but his real memorial will be in the memory of those whose lives he touched. Tony Wilson - Lancashire lad! Thanks for everything mate.

NigelAugust 10th 2007.

I wasn't a great fan of Tony Wilson (the broadcaster), but as someone who loves Manchester I recognise what he did for the city - and you have got to really admire him for that. You also have to respect a man who always spoke his mind and stuck to his roots. The treatment he received in the NHS postcode lottery (I am not including Christies in this) was appalling. Highlighting this will hopefully make a difference for those who suffer in the future. It would be a fitting tribute to Mr Wilson.

Liam Fogarty,LiverpoolAugust 10th 2007.

Every city needs a Tony Wilson. Contrary to popular myth, "Mr Manchester" was actually rather fond of the city of Liverpool. He would have built a wonderful museum of popular culture ("POP") here, but our city fathers had other ideas ( except, of course, they didn't. And in any case, Tony had already made off with the best ones...)Provocative? Yes,thank God. Opinionated? Of course, but his opinions were always worth hearing. The great cities of the North have lost a true champion. Sincere condolences to Tony's family and many friends.

paulAugust 10th 2007.

I am an adopted Manc. I've lived there for 5 years and he and his work is a large part of the reason I fell in love with the city. I was fortunate to work with him briefly too - what a man.

AndrewAugust 10th 2007.

Sadly missed, fondly remembered, manchester hero..... RIP

Philomena CarolanAugust 10th 2007.

Hello Everyone,It is sad,I remember, years ago in 1980, the late Pope John Paul II was touring Briton, Tony said, I cannot see a Pope, I see a Grandad.Also, our parents,Jack and Margaret, when they used to make regular visit's to the Liverpool City Centre before it had much of it's beauty smashed away, Mum said, it was down by the Albert Dock were the Granada Studios used to be, they saw Tony,leaving the building, he smiled and waved to our parents.It is sad that, one of the many well-known faces from North West T.V. has now gone, but "Not Forgotten" oh! no.Thank youPhilomena Carolan (Miss)

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

A true architect of Manchester, whatever you thought of him a million people around the world wouldnt have heard of Manchester if it wasn't for him. Inspirational.

chris from salfordAugust 10th 2007.

I used to work for a traffic dept., and once told Anthony that he could not park on double yellow lines, I made him move his car 3 times, he got quite annoyed with me and called me a bitch. So I said to him 'so you know me then',he started to laugh, so did I. He said I wish there were more like you with a sense of humour and he gave me a kiss on the cheek. I saw him a couple of times after that and he remembered me for what had happened. Great bloke with a great personality, he will be missed.

Councillor Mike AmesburyAugust 10th 2007.

A bolshy, no nonsense yet compassionate character. Tony Wilson epitomised the Mancunian psyche, his cultural legacy will live on forever.

Professor Rob RightAugust 10th 2007.

Tony was a great advocate for the UK's third city of Manchester. The hacienda epitomised everything that represents Manchester today - drugs, gang violence, shootings and gun crime. He will be sorely missed in the ghetto.

PeterAugust 10th 2007.

The tallest tree in the forest has been cut down. Tony will not only be very sadly missed as one of the city's great and much loved characters, but also for one over-riding reason...he was irreplaceable.

PaulaAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester has a lot to thank Anthony Wilson for, without the Hacienda and all it stood for, in all its controversy, Manchester culture wouldn't be where it is today it took people from all walks of life, shook them up and dropped them down together on the dancefloor of the hac. Spent many-a-night there and it was a sad day when it closed its doors forever. Goodbye Tony, tis the end of an era!

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Was sad when I heard the news met you once working at A Manchester hotel serving you at a luncheon in the 90's. Always a twinkle in your eye.The Hacienda was the place I enjoyed many a Saturday nights. A real icon of the city. You will always be remembered in our hearts. R I P.

MarieAugust 10th 2007.

So sad to hear he has died, he was an old classmate of my Dads who died 2 years ago from cancer. Hope they're up in heaven catching up over a few pints! R.I.P Tony

jimmy savageAugust 10th 2007.

Legend is an over used these days,but for me Tony Wilson is a true Manchester Legend.RIP Tony.

JoAugust 10th 2007.

The city doesn't feel the same without you, but your legacy will carry on for years to come. You could make me angry, but you also made me laugh out loud. Always provoking strong reaction whatever the situation, you made people think and shook them out of their comfort zone. You will be missed so much.

hayleyAugust 10th 2007.

R.I.P tony you have inspired me and you are responsible for the music i adore, I hope you re unite with Ian. God bless. xxxx

jabez cleggAugust 10th 2007.

Anthony H Wilson was a champion of Manchester and Mancunians everywhere. His voice, his style, his opinions, he belonged to us all. He will be missed, He will be remembered. God bless you Tony, and thank you

Trev FisherAugust 10th 2007.

Tony is up there with that other brilliant and unregarded Mancunian genius Alan Turing. Whilst Tony did not crack the enigma code (thus winning the 2nd world war) or invent the worlds first digital computer (thus redefining the world), he did invent what the Youth of Manchester were to become for generations. His bands, his clubs and his attitude put our youth on the map forever as cooler than most., we have all benefitted from this.

JohnAugust 10th 2007.

I always hoped he might have another Mancunian cultural revolution up his sleeve - something to kick us up the backsides and make the rest of the world jealous. I feel that real genuine pride in my city (rather than nostalgia) is a little bit further away with Tony's passing. I regret that I didn't know him well, but he did always seem to inspire our sense of the possible. Wake up Manchester, you are dead!

KatyAugust 10th 2007.

Without this man would Manchester and its music have been put on the worldwide map? Mr Manchester you will be missed but my mum still laughs at the time you tried to chat her up out side the chippy in chorlton and you tried to show off in your car which failed to start haha! Bless you your a true legend to every proud mancuniun, RIP my friend and slap curtis for me!Katy xx

CLMAugust 10th 2007.

LEGEND ... Manchester just won't feel the same without ya!!RIP mate xxx

ScouserAugust 10th 2007.

Goodbye Tony, you are gone but will never be forgotten,God Bless You Son.xx

pimpinjAugust 10th 2007.

Its a real shock to lose manchesters biggest champion, a man whose opinion was not always welcomed but always truthful and from the heart, theres a black and yellow striped cloud in the sky today!

gikeAugust 10th 2007.

Such an intelligent,well cultured and charming man. Mr Antony Wilson will be missed by all who grew up in the eighties. A cultural genius.

pgAugust 10th 2007.

It's like a piece of Manchester has disappeared and left a permanent hole. I totally agree with baggio - let's have a monument, a happy smiling monument looking out over his Manchester.

John S. LockeAugust 10th 2007.

I had the pleasure to meet Tony when I was a Starstruck twentysomething at the Tenth Summer concert in 1986...he was a flamboyant, whirlwind who I had watched and admired as a young music promoter and club runner in the world re-knowned musical backwater of Chester. To me Tony was a legend back then. I met him several times at The Hacienda after that and even though he never remembered me or had a clue who I was, he always claimed he did, and he always took the time to listen to me waffle on about music, clubs and dish out a bit of advice.I got to know Tony reasonably well after moving to Manchester and we co hosted a Tsunami fund raiser at The Apollo and he went on stage to a rapturous booing and hissing, which he brushed away with a quick' F**k off!' to the crowd - but he was far from a pantomime villian - he was a generous, passionate, opinioned, incredibly intelligent and great company.I often bumped into him when I was walking to work at The Comedy Store and he was walking that bloody mad Weimeraner he loved so much. Meeting Tony was always a pleasure for me - he was a personal hero of mine and I will always be proud to have known him.

LozzAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester and music of many genres would have been so different without him, and so would we! An absolute legend and inspiration, I'm sorry i never got to meet him because I have so much respect for him. Why? Because he (and a few others) just did it, no messing around, forget the money, forget the bureaucracy, lets make something special happen. and he (and others) did.

MALCOLM DORRAugust 10th 2007.

Tony (Anthony H) Wilson seemed to be someone who you either admired or "couldn't stand". Coming from Liverpool I fell into the former category. He did so much for the North-West especially Manchester. I loved the way he always stood-up for the North-west and wouldn't mince words with those from London and the South who paid lip-service to the area. My ever-lasting memories of him will include his individual presentation style on Granada Reports which of course would get him into trouble at times, and his fantastic show "So It Goes" which championed music which couldn't be heard elsewhere. Hopefully this will be repeated on a digital channel at sometime in the future so more can appreciate what he did. Not forgetting Factory Records and the Hacienda..RIP Tony - I won't forget you.

Chris BAugust 10th 2007.

Tony, You have made me proud to be a Mancunian, i have travelled the world extensively and there is no place like Manchester for it's people, music and character. Your music and your legacy will live on forever. RIP

little chefAugust 10th 2007.

very much an icon to manchester.it's people and it's music.sadly missed

BJAugust 10th 2007.

Your presence we'll miss, the memories we'll treasure. We'll love you always forget you never.

Nathan = ManchesterAugust 10th 2007.

A true individual and example to all. Did so much in so many ways for manchester and beyond - would have made a great and interesting mayor of manchester!

baggioAugust 10th 2007.

long live tony wilson. the city should erect a monument to this man for what he's done for manchester.

Dave AthertonAugust 10th 2007.

Goodbye my literary friend, you were truly a great man. You join C P Scott, Walter Greenwood, Harold Brighouse in the pages of history. Your name & works will be praised a hundred years from now.The last time I saw you I told you I was in the sixth age of lean and slippered pantaloon, and you laughed. How swiftly your seventh age passed. How it hurts to know I will never hear your voice again.A fellow 24-hour party personDave

Gordon SimpsonAugust 10th 2007.

RIP MR Manchester

trishAugust 10th 2007.

Tony - I hope you knew how thousands of Manchester people rated you and just to remind you 'you were the tops'. Totally!!! Thankyou for remaining loyal to Mcr and to yourself and for all the brill music you brought to the world from the streets of your beloved Mcr. I believe you will be setting up your own Hacienda in heaven above to last eternally and you will be a total success again - which I know you deserve. I am convinced that your family and close friends will be helped by knowing how well people thought of yourself and your works - you are so deserving of the word LEGEND - and I am simple person bestow this on you. God Bless you and welcome you into his arms. Also God help your family and friends at this sad time and hopefully people will keep your memories alive within their hearts thereby you will live forever. Thank you Sir.

Elaine M BrignallAugust 10th 2007.

WHAT A FANTASTIC MAN !MY KIND THOUGHTS TO HIS FAMILY.

Adam BrownAugust 10th 2007.

Thankyou for all you did for this city, you were a true champion of Manchester. Sleep well Mr Manchester.

missfleaAugust 10th 2007.

The first time I ever set eyes on Julian Clary as Joan Collins Fan Club was at the Hacienda I spent many an odd Monday night downstairs at the Gay Traitor and had oh so much fun running the guest list on Flesh nights. Without Tony, my memory banks would be lot less colourful than they are today. Thanks, Mr Wilson, we will all miss you.

DopelyricsAugust 10th 2007.

Tony Wilson did more for Manchester than just about anyone. I think without his influence, Manchester wouldn't be nearly the place it is today - a city recognised world-wide for its musical heritage. RIP.

Professor Rob RightAugust 10th 2007.

Tony Wilson might be gone but Prof Rob Right is alive and well and ready to speak the truth for Manchester.

Captain BrenAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester has lost one of it's most vocal supporters. I have memories of him walking his dogs around Castlefield. He will be missed.

Martin CoyneAugust 10th 2007.

I am 51, so Tony had been in my life like many Mancunians, for over 30 years. I appeared last year on his BBC Manchester "Talk of the Town" show which broadcasted live from the Cornerhouse.I really enjoyed it. He arrived about 5 mins before going live for 2 hours. Very well mannered, but also electrically controversial he asked his guests what their favourite Manchester landmark building was. The Town Hall, The Central Library and another building were trottrd out by the 3 guests. He told us ( which was the purpose of the question) that he and AJP Taylor, the famous historian believed that the Town Hall extension was the finest building, especially when viewed from above!! But actually the alley, between the Library and the Extension, is so Manchester. We walked back together from The Cornerhouse to the BBC car park. He made me feel part of the fold because I am a proud Mancunian. He also liked the fact that I went to The Cardinal Grammar School, as he firmly believed that Manchester was run by former lapsed catholic grammar school boys, he of course being an ex De La Salle boy.Another controversial view, but perhaps with a ring of validity. We had a lovely chat and he then set off in his Jag to travel with his dog, to DJ in Glasgow. He apologised to me several times for unfortunately missing my birthday party which I had invited him to. I was honoured that he'd accepted the invitation! Finally,I was chatting last night on hearing the sad news ,to my brother Tony Coyne who has worked on sound at Granada TV for 25 years. |They did Up Front together. We swapped a few stories and he said Tony's favourite memory from the Happy Mondays was when he first met Bez who said to him " hey you, are you Man U, you?" Priceless!!!He was Manchester and the North and he enthused about the people and our lives. I've juat finished a new web site featuring iconic Manchester buildings, I'm sure he would have liked it. I agree we need a statue of a true Mancunian in our city - now- not in 10 years time. My deepest sympathy extends to all his family, loved ones and good mates.

annieAugust 10th 2007.

Tony was a great icon to the manchester music scene......loved him as a host on Grananda reports and other Granada portraits!.......will be sadly missed.

LiamAugust 10th 2007.

We would invite him to events and then he would actully turn up! A wonderful man.Unique.

Angie RobinsonAugust 10th 2007.

Loved being interviewed by Tony and taking part in debates. When I first met him I thought he was a prat - just how wrong can you be ! He loved the north and revelled in our special ways of doing things round here. He proved that the M6 isn't cobbled past Watford. Just one final thing to say - "Do I look bug**r in this?" May you rest peacefully. My thoughts are with those who loved him most.

Nigel ChatfieldAugust 10th 2007.

I first met Tony Wilson when he came to see my band play at the Cyprus Tavern in 1980. He stayed for our whole set and even purchased one of our albums. He was friendly and definitely not the Svengali character I'd expected. When I was editor of Manchester's "City Fun" magazine, Tony Wilson kept us afloat by taking out a full page advert for the Hacienda in every issue. He also gave us free access to the club, which also hosted the magazine's fifth birthday party in 1984.Although frequently derided by people (including "City Fun" from time to time), Tony's genuine belief in the music and the city proved unshakeable. I believe his contribution to Manchester and music is truly unique and this really is the end of an era.

HellsAugust 10th 2007.

Stunned. I've always had mixed feelings about Tony Wilson, ranging from "arrogant *&^&%^" to "genius". But he's certainly a huge part of Manchester life that will be sadly missed.Hopefully he's met up now in the great Gay Traitor bar in the sky with Rob Gretton for a few pints and a chat about old times.RIP Tony, you changed the face of Manchester music, nightlife, culture and put us on the map and I thank you for it.

Davie VAugust 10th 2007.

Cheerio Tony. You were one of a only few people who have truly made a difference to so many people. Manchester has had an irrational share of pioneers & has been blessed by your presence & belief. You inspired so many to enjoy themselves hedonistically. RIP Anthony H Wilson

Michael TaylorAugust 10th 2007.

The facts about his life won't tell you what a warm and affectionate friend he was. What a supportive and passionate journalist he was. He always teased me about living in Marple, where he grew up, happily, living on Strines Road, so he wouldn't fall in with bad guys in Salford. Now, there's an irony.Every meeting with him was a joy. A flurry of inspiration and ideas and wonderful stories. I'll never forget an otherwise workaday meeting at the offices of the Mersey Basin Campaign where we were co-authors of a forthcoming book about the River Mersey. Some of the other writers were asking about "tone of voice". The voice of Tone intervened, and this is accurate: "When Sid Vicious was asked if he wrote for the man in the street, he said "I've met the man in the street and he's a c*nt." Write for who the f*ck you want."He always pushed me to think differently about things: Lancashire, Marxism, Catholicism, Islam, and music (where he utterly failed to get me to like some of his awful hip hop and rap).Whenever we did radio shows together he always dragged up things to get the conversation going. He was a broadcasting genius. There has been a great deal written and spoken about Tony Wilson over the next few days and all of it is true, because it was what people wanted to think about him. But he always maintained, even when there were film posters for 24 Hour Party People, bearing the legend Poet - Genius - Tw*t, he said his public persona had nothing to do with him. But it did. Even in the last sick few months he used his position as the faintly ridiculous "Mr Manchester" to rail at the injustice of the postcode lottery over his medication. Not for him, who had pals who funded his relief, but for those in Manchester who could not.He was wonderfully close to Yvette, who I feel so bad for tonight and for Olly and Izzy.He was a truly special person who I was honoured to count of as a friend. I will miss him, but his spirit will never be forgotten. All of us in media, and I dare say music, will feel the same.

Miss BunnyAugust 10th 2007.

I am sorry to hear this news, Godbless you Tony. It is strange that I was moved to pray for you only yesterday remembering your illness.It seems too soon to speak of you in the past tense, you are such an integral part of the Manchester regeneration and culture. I hope the people of Manchester will continue to celebrate your life for a long time to come and to rejoice as Poetman says.RIP you will be missed. x

Ralf JeutterAugust 10th 2007.

I once saw him shopping at Asda (Hulme) with his kids. I didn't recognise him at the time. He somehow stood out. Naturally bigger than life, although just doing his everyday bit for the family. Later on it occurred to me who he was. It's a lasting memory of an exceptional man doing mundane things in style and with warmth. Thanks for making Manchester special. It's a sad day, yet one to be celebrated for you having been there. RIP Tony.

emmaAugust 10th 2007.

a legend creating the hacienda was a god send they were the days ailways remember ssing you when we went away for 6 weeks hols whebn iwas a kid at abersoch then when i partied at the hacienda as ian brown says you won be adored tont wilson rip

Jo WoodAugust 10th 2007.

He was an institution, need I say anymore. My thoughts are with his family.

Ben PascallAugust 10th 2007.

I feel a bit wierd having read this - as a 28 year old, I just missed out on the Hacienda, but have best mates who lived it - I feel proud of the modern culture of our city that Tony helped lay down - and those in/out of the know about who and what he was owe a bout of gratitude for what he tried to achieve.Whenever I go on holiday, I never forget my identity, and if i hear a song by joy Division, New Order, or The happy Mondays, I feel proud to be a Mancunian, and part of the great city that Tony Wilson helped rejuvinate.

Mr Fortunate MancAugust 10th 2007.

The decaying mill town of Manchester will never be the same!RIP Anthony H Wilson

Adrian LuvdupAugust 10th 2007.

A tragedy. Without Tony Wilson, Manchester would not be the place it is. Factory and The Hacienda helped make Manchester world-famous for it's music, and his legacy will continue long, long after his tragic departure.Yes, we all liked to sneer at that huge photo of a smug-looking Tony gazing down upon us as we paid our money to get into the Hac, but no-one championed Manchester like Tony.

joel PerryAugust 10th 2007.

for a bloody yiewnited fan - you were ok.rip tony. we tried to help.thats why the fight goes on.love and peacejoel http://www.versuscancer.org

AimeeAugust 10th 2007.

Very sad, I give his love to his family and all that knew him. An individual who will be missed.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

Respect PURE respect Tony. RIP X

Jay SandersonAugust 10th 2007.

Sad news indeed. If Manchester had it's Victorian founding Fathers, Tony was the 20th Century equivalent. Condolences to his family and friends, you will be missed by many.Godspeed.

Steve HorrocksAugust 10th 2007.

Pushed infront of Tony at the dry cleaners on Liverpool street as I was in a rush once, interupted a conversation un-intensionaly. He was cool calm and didn‘t mind.Just a decent bloke who did some real good for the city. He lived, enjoyed, experienced and had a life.Rest in peace fella.

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

I am in shock, he was too young. What a sad day for Manchester & the North West, it is the end of an era. Gutted.

NorthernchickjpAugust 10th 2007.

Very sad especially for his kids to lose their Dad. I have grown up with him on Granada TV and then through Factory Records and The Hacienda. His legacy lives on . R.I.P.

HelenAugust 10th 2007.

Manchester owes you one, Tony. You loved this city and it was all the better for you.May you rest in wonderful music

AnonymousAugust 10th 2007.

always worth listening to ,a people person ,one of manchesters finest.sadly missed fondly remembered.rose m.

Gaynor RenwickAugust 10th 2007.

Anthony Wilson: saw the guy at a conference a couple of years ago and you couldn't help but become absorbed in his depth of feeling for Manchester...you came away with a renewed pride in what the City of Manchester and Salford are all about: a real ambassador whose voice will be much missed

Julie TwistAugust 10th 2007.

It still doesn't seem true that a man so full of life is no longer with us. Tony had so much enthusiasm and belief in Manchester his words will stay with me forever.

victor hymanAugust 10th 2007.

Walking past Arison Picture Framers in Chorlton to-night and there smiling back at me is the cheeky face of Tony Wilson,thought of flowers and messages of condolence.,

jillAugust 10th 2007.

very sad news Anthony you will be missed.. x

StevePAugust 10th 2007.

Part of Manchester died today. A massive massive loss...Thanks Tony - it's all yours.

demandAugust 10th 2007.

This guy was a legend, yet wasn't really recognised in life, so let's make sure he is in death. RIP

Lee HallAugust 10th 2007.

Long live Anthony H Wilson. No-one will ever achieve what he has done for music & manchester in the pas, present and the future!!! will be so missed so much! thoughts go out with his family and people of manchester.

Michael HerbertAugust 10th 2007.

So It goes and his later show (forget the name, it used to go out after Granada news for 30 minutes and round up what was happening culturally) were great. The question is could someone do what do Tony did nowadays. I suspect not. The media and the city is now in the thrall of corporate global brands and corporations that have killed off originality and individuality.

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