Piccadilly Gardens are concrete rather than floral now but despite a slightly unsavoury reputation it still remains the gateway to the city. The coming and going of buses and trams means Piccadilly Gardens is always bustling.
It’s in the heart of Manchester city centre, just a short walk from the shops on Market Street and near the vibrant Northern Quarter. There are popular restaurants, coffee shops and takeaways from big chains as well as an open-air street food market on Wednesdays to Sundays and a craft market on Fridays and Saturdays.
Dotted around Piccadilly Gardens, there are statues of Queen Victoria, the Duke of Wellington, James Watt and Robert Peel. On sunny summer days, you’ll see children playing in the fountains and people sunbathing on the grass.
A large area is currently fenced off as an events space (November 2022). The results of a competition to redesign the entire gardens will be announced in 2023. It’s an admission by the Council that this public space isn’t fulfilling its potential at the moment. Let’s hope the next few years see it transformed into a place we can be proud of once again.