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Kenneth Branagh, Alex Kingston, Battle In Wythie And The Silliest City Gargoyle

Sleuth Wk 30 and huge news about Caffe Nero

Published on July 21st 2013.

Kenneth Branagh, Alex Kingston, Battle In Wythie And The Silliest City Gargoyle

SleuthSleuthSleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week, it's the truth, but Sleuth's truth. He's several people all at once. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to publish. Sleuth sometimes even gets serious. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows. Follow Sleuth on twitter @mcrsleuth

Branagh Leans, Kingston Whips And Fearon Spits

Sleuth went to Manchester International Festival’s Macbeth production in the former St Peter’s Church in Ancoats last week. He was sat close to one of the performance entrances and as close to the action as possible without being a paid-up cast member. The stars performed in a sort of pit.

Kenneth Branagh as Macbeth twice lent against the pit wall a forearm’s distance from Sleuth and stared at Sleuth madly in the eyes, Alex Kingston (main picture above) as a ranting Lady Macbeth whipped Sleuth with her hair during a rant, while, Ray Fearon as Macduff spat blood on Sleuth’s sleeve.

"How was that for you?" someone asked Sleuth at the Festival Square later. "Intimate,” replied Sleuth.

Branagh And A Nice Caress

Branagh has revealed that on occasion, members of the Macbeth audience weren’t able to resist giving his arm a gentle stroke as he lent on their bit of wall. Apparently he found this “rather nice”. Sleuth is pleased that Alex Kingston has not yet revealed how when she lent on his bit of wall he asked her if she wanted to go for a drink sometime. "Out vile spot!" seemed to be her rather unkind reply. A simple "no" would have been enough.



Branagh concentrates on getting rubbed

Jazz Festival Could Get Messy But Should Be Fecund

Following on from MIF in Albert Square there will be Manchester Jazz Festival. Sleuth likes this idea, it means the splendid configuration of temporary tents and bars will continue and thus hopefully the artlovers of Manchester will still have a focal point when MIF has gone.

Sleuth isn’t so sure about the Twitter address of the Jazz Festival though: @ManJazzFest. As one of the writers at Confidential said, “Does that mean if you go into the performance areas you’ll be showered with Man Jazz?”

Cheeky Tyke Sign At Festival Square

How dare they, thinks Sleuth about this mobile food purveyor who appeared at MIF. Manchester was always Lancashire.  

Wrong side of the Pennines

Wrong side of the Pennines

Boney M On The Bus

Sleuth was on his way home riding the people's bus, number 50. He encountered an intoxicated Irishman unsure of his destination. Swaying towards the front of the bus he asked for directions to 'The Rivers of Babylon', before breaking into a sterling rendition of  the Boney M song. Feeling empowered other people on the bus joined in, including three Spaniards. After a raucous sing-a-long the driver answered "It's just down on your right at the next stop." The Irishman thanked him and departed the bus at Wu Lung Cash & Carry on the A34. The fact this was clearly not Babylon didn’t seem to bother our man who thanked the bus driver handsomely.

Red Trousered Swiss Mancs

Sleuth took a Swiss film crew from Zurich around this week. They were filming a holiday programme for the main Swiss commercial broadcaster. “Is this right?” asked Roland the presenter. “Is what right?” asked Sleuth.

“These red trousers and the blue shirt,” said Roland continuing with, “I was told by my colleagues that Manchester boys like to wear red trousers and blue shirts. Everybody in Switzerland thinks this is what Manchester boys do.”

Sleuth didn’t know what to say, so he said, “They only do that when they go on holiday to Switzerland, it’s an unwritten rule.” The Swiss nodded sagely, satisfied with the answer.

Red and blue makes a Manc of you


Red and blue makes a Manc of you

The Tropic Of Manchester

It was lovely weather on the tour with the Swiss - referred to in the story above. “I cannot believe this,” said Roland throwing up his arms, “I’m tanning in Manchester. Nobody will believe me in Zurich.” Sleuth thought they might do since they seem to believe that Manchester boys like to wear red trousers and blue shirts.

The Best News In The World

Sleuth is ecstatic, overjoyed, delighted, euphoric. He will no longer have to cross seven metres of Peter Street to the Starbucks on Mount Street if he wants his fix of chain coffee close to the Convention Centre. A new Caffe Nero is opening in St George’s House. Hallelujah. God is in his heaven and all is right with the world. Let’s all have a party, as a city we are now complete and....zzzzzzzz. 

Caffe Nero is still waiting for its terrace chairs


Caffe Nero is still waiting for its terrace chairs

Battle For Wythenshawe

Sleuth was happy to receive a press release from the council about the Wythenshawe Games from 28 July to 3 August which includes ‘role-play fans re-enacting the English Civil War. Pikes, cannon balls and muskets will all be at the ready as Royalists do battle for King Charles 1.’ Sleuth particularly likes the name of the person who on the press release gave the City Council quote in support of the faux-fighting. She's called Councillor Rosa Battle, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure at Manchester City Council. Very apt.

Sleuth And The Silliest Gargoyles 

Every seven days or so Sleuth is stopped in the street and asked by policemen, concierges, Charles 1, Kenneth Branagh, Alex Kingston, drunken Irishmen, Emperor Caffe Nero, Roland from Switzerland and all the staff of all the coffee shops in the North West: "Where can we find the silliest gargoyles in central Manchester?"

"Why," says Sleuth, "they would be on the River Medlock side of the Palace Hotel, formerly the Refuge Assurance building, which was designed by Paul Waterhouse in 1910. Thing is you can only see these if you’re actually stood in the river bed as was when I took the photographs.”

And to prove this he showed the policemen, concierges, Charles 1, Kenneth Branagh, Alex Kingston, drunken Irishmen, Emperor Caffe Nero, Roland from Switzerland and all the Luddites in the North West, these pictures. 

Medlock, Burgers And More 032


Silliest gargoyles in Manchester

Daft face looks down on passers-by in the River MedlockDaft face looks down on passers-by in the River Medlock

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AnonymousJuly 23rd 2013.


Poster BoyJuly 24th 2013.

A patent misrepresentation. A Yorkshireman would never pay £5 for fish and chips...

1 Response: Reply To This...
WoksmugglerAugust 2nd 2013.

Maybe not .... but he'd damned well charge that for them!

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