Undoubtedly, The Smiths were one of the greatest rock and roll bands ever. Their unique sound, specific sense of humor of Morrisey coupled with Johnny Marrs innovative approach to guitar continue to inspire new generations of musicians today, not to mention a devoted fan base, which is still growing, years after the bend has played their final note.
And many of those fans will take regular trips to Manchester, to visit places related to the band. Because, let’s face it, Smiths were all about Manchester. And the city is soaked with spots related to the band.
In this post I want to highlight some of the most important ones every Smiths’ fan should visit.
1. 384 Kings Road (Private House)
This is a home Morrisey grew up in. The house is located around 3 miles (approx. an hour walk) from the city centre, not far from Longford Park. Definitely a must see (even though it’s a private property and you won’t be able to go inside – unless you have good convincing skills of course).
2. Strangeways Prison
Located on Southall Street, approx. 1 mile from the city center this landmark was featured in the title of The Smiths’ final album – Strangeways Here We Come. Today, the prison is called Manchester prison.
3. The Holy Name Church
Located on the corner of Oxford Road and Dover St, this church was immortalized in the lyrics of Vicar in a Tutu from their 1986 “The Queen is Dead” album. The opening line of the song goes: “I was minding my business lifting some lead off the roof of The Holy Name church”. Enough said.
4. Rusholme Area and Platt Fields Park
Rusholme is a suburban district of Manchester. One of the most known locations is the Platt Fields Park where they sometimes have fairs, located off Wilmslow Road. It gave the title to Rusholme Ruffians, a song from The Smiths’ 1985 Meat is Murder LP.
5. Salford Lads Club
Located on the corner of St Ignatius Walk and Coronation Street. this venue is famous for being portrayed on the back of 1986 “The Queen is Dead” album. Today Salford houses The Smiths Room, a large collection of memorabilia related to the band.
Moreover, after the bands breakup the club was often used by Mike Joyce and Andy Rourke as their rehearsal space.
6. The Ritz (The Smiths’ First Concert Venue!)
This club located on Whitworth Street West is a place where the Smiths played their first ever gig… A must place to visit, it goes without saying.
The Smiths have left their mark not only on the world of music but the city they were so closely connected with. It’s hard not to find a place in Manchester that wouldn’t be related to the band in one way or the other. I hope that the list above will help you get started with visiting The Smiths related places in Manchester.
Thomas is a great music fan and currently works for the leading provider of serviced apartments in Manchester.
Of course, Manchester is wonderful for many other activities, too. So make sure to check my post on Things to Do in Manchester.