SALFORD STOCKING FILLERS
Peter Hook: THE HACIENDA: HOW NOT TO RUN A CLUB
(Pocket Books £7.99)
We said it last Christmas when it was out in hardback – and we'll repeat it now that it's out in paperback…
`This book has got to be the best Chrissy present anyone in Salford could hope for because, not only is its off-its-head gosh factor subject matter enough to keep you riveted to its pages but also because it's written in proper Salford prose by the only person who could have written it from the heart, club co-owner and New Order legend Peter Hook.
`How Not To Run A Club is one of those can't-put-down books where every chapter leaves you gasping for breath as car crash management, car crash finances and car crash car crashes collide head on in an extended re-mix of nineties drugs, guns, dance, rave, whizzing cops and `the Salford lot'…'
Anyone who hasn't read this book yet is totally missing out. More details here.
Tom Chesshyre: TO HULL AND BACK: ON HOLIDAY IN UNSUNG BRITAIN
Fun controversial travel book, where the author - a posh travel writer for The Times - goes on holiday to what he calls the "backwaters" of Britain to see how bad they are. And, yes, Salford's in there, sandwiched in between Slough (`We Must Celebrate The Trading Estate') and Derry (`On Holiday In Bogside')… "some of the country's most overlooked least celebrated spots". Nice start eh?
And it gets better… "At first glance, Salford certainly seemed `unsung' – and possibly dangerous" writes Chesshyre "The streets appear tough and forbidding…Salford does not feel as though many people would come here for a weekend break."
Staying at the £150 a night Lowry Hotel, Chesshyre gets the usual URC, Felicity Goodey regeneration whitewash, including a trip to The Lowry. He asks her: `So are you worried that things like MediaCity and flashy new apartments will just be seen as being for yuppies working for the BBC and young professionals who cannot afford prices in Manchester? Are you concerned that the local people who already live in Salford will not benefit from the recent changes?'
`Yes' she replies… `It would be morally indefensible for us not to'…etc etc.
And then on to the Chimney Pot Park upside down Urban Splash houses in Langworthy where `Emma, thirty, another mum on the dole', tells him "They're full of idiots. They just think they're better than us 'cos they've got nice cars.'
Then it's on to Salford Lads Club ,`the Real Coronation Street', and the Working Class Movement Library. Along the way, Chesshyre meets the locals, including, in The Crescent pub, the editor of Salford Star, who tells him the history of Mary Burns (recounted with a huge dollop of poetic licence by the author), and passes "zombie-like figures who must be drug addicts…real life matchstick figures, in the heart of Lowry-land".
Yep, the stereotypes come out to play. But there might just be a twist in the tale. Get it and read for yourself Chesshyre's Salford conclusions, plus his thoughts and travels around all the other "backwaters of Britain".
Definitely entertaining. And sure to warm you up this freezing Christmas – parts of it will make your blood boil!
SALFORD STAR'S TOP CHRISTMAS PRESENTS
Part 1: Salford Christmas Books To Make You Think click here
Part 2: Salford Star Hoodie/T-shirt click here
Part 3: Suzuki Method Skateboard/New New's Eve Party Ticket click here