I went to see new attraction that is bursting with Manc pride - helped by Noel Gallagher and Paddy McGuinness

It opened on Friday and you’ve got a couple of months to go along.
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A unique photography exhibition celebrating the people that make Manchester such a special place has opened.

‘Greater Mancunians’ welcomed its first visitors to Central Library on Friday and features pictures of more than 120 significant Manchester names. One of the special things about it is all the images are taken by students of Manchester College. The project is supported by the city council and co-ordinated by tutor Harry Potts.

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Some of the most well-known names include Noel Gallagher, Andy Burnham, council leader Bev Craig, Olympic athlete Keely Hodgkinson and Manc music favourites Clint Boon, Johnny Marr and Peter Hook – as well as many local heroes whose stories are celebrated equally. 

Johnny Marr features in the Greater Mancunians exhibitionJohnny Marr features in the Greater Mancunians exhibition
Johnny Marr features in the Greater Mancunians exhibition

On arrival for my visit, heading up the stairs towards the exhibition were posters on each floor which acted as a preview to the gallery. Big names like Paddy McGuinness and John Cooper Clarke guided me up to the first floor where the main exhibition was held. 

The walls were filled with a variety of faces, ranging from the instantly-recognisable celebrities to community heroes. Each photo was labelled below with a brief introduction to the smiling face behind the glass. There was no hierarchy within the layout of the pictures, just the students’ careful consideration of filling up empty space. 

At the end of the room was appreciation for each of the students whose photos were displayed. As well as a list of names, there was a collage of the students with the Manc they photographed, which added a nice personal touch to the gallery. 

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The students and their subjects at the Greater Mancunians exhibition The students and their subjects at the Greater Mancunians exhibition
The students and their subjects at the Greater Mancunians exhibition

Throughout the exhibition, it was evident to see the immense effort put in by the students to bring this gallery to life. Each individual’s personality was captured perfectly, along with attention to small details to showcase their individual quirks in one photo.

It's the perfect day out if you want to learn something new about a favourite Manchester icon, or meet someone new entirely and read about their amazing story – it is a celebration about all the Mancs who make the city what it is today.  

Speaking about the exhibition, tutor Harry Potts told Manchester World: “It's become a celebration of what's great about Manchester. It’s a great opportunity for students to get out of their comfort zones. We have some students who are very quiet and this project has really sort of brought them out of their shell and made them feel more confident about being a photographer.” The exhibition is open in the Central Library from April 19 to June 30.

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