You'll never guess where I'm writing from...

Kelner's View

Share
Related Topics

Waking up in Manchester yesterday morning, it felt like the city
appreciated what a euro crisis really felt like. Both its football
clubs were out of the Champions League, even though they were among
the favourites to lift the trophy.

Schadenfreude, which is not Bayern Munich's defensive system, was in evidence, with both clubs' disconsolate supporters taking small comfort in their rivals' woes. Football is the definitive zero sum game. Regular readers (you know who you are – yes, both of you) will know that my sympathies lie with the City half of the city, although my primary allegiance is to Manchester itself.

Around the corner from where I work in London is an art gallery that recently had an exhibition of Lowry paintings. Every lunchtime, I'd go and sit there to look at the matchstick men and women at the football match, or on their way home from work, or going up the steps at Maryport and feel all nostalgic. A lot of Lowry's work depicted the post-industrial area of Manchester and its twin city of Salford, where the major urban regeneration effort is now concentrated.

Instead of chimneys and factories are software units and media hubs. As your tram follows the waterside, with Liebeskind's Imperial War Museum in the background, and calls at stations like Harbour City and Pomona, a comparison with Sydney is not out of the question. (But the weather was undeniably Mancunian. They say it always rains here. Wrong. Yesterday it was hailing, too.)

At the centre of the Salford Quays development is MediaCity, a new home for the BBC, where a big chunk of programming is now housed, including all its sports output. It is a very impressive complex, which, despite the complaints of a sizeable number of London-based staff, appears to be a fully functioning centre. Local radio is cheek-by-jowl with some Radio 4 programmes, Radio 5 is a couple of floors above Match of the Day. "It feels like we're all part of the same organisation," one staffer told me.

The colour scheme is purple and green, and, like many modern offices, its communal spaces have more in common with boutique hotels than a traditional office. Still, whatever breakfast presenter Sian Williams and the other Beeb refuseniks think about the horrible prospect of going further north than Edgware, MediaCity is an effective statement of the BBC's desire to be less London-centric. To the listener, of course, it shouldn't, and probably doesn't, matter where the programme is coming from, although I know producers and presenters are concerned about securing guests for the shows. It's certainly easier to have an argument with Richard Bacon in the studio than down a phone line. The same location-neutral argument exists for this column. You will have no clue whatever that it was written on a train. Have a good weekend. And don't forget to take your belongings with you.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

(Senior) IT Support Engineer - 1st-3rd Line Support

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful IT service provider that has bee...

Wind Farm Civil Design Engineer

£55000 - £65000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

Principal Marine Mechanical Engineer

£60000 - £70000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

Principle Geotechnical Engineer

£55000 - £65000 Per Annum: The Green Recruitment Company: The Green Recruitmen...

Day In a Page

Read Next
A Russian hunter at the Medved bear-hunting lodge in Siberia  

Save the Tiger: Meet the hunters tasked with protecting Russia's rare Amur tiger

Oliver Poole
Save the Tiger: Meet the hunters tasked with protecting Russia's rare Amur tiger

Hunters protect Russia's rare Amur tiger

In an unusual move, wildlife charities have enlisted those who kill animals to help save them. Oliver Poole travels to Siberia to investigate
Transfers: How has your club fared in summer sales?

How has your club fared in summer sales?

Who have bagged the bargain buys and who have landed the giant turkeys
Warwick Davis: The British actor on Ricky Gervais, how the Harry Potter set became his office, and why he'd like to play a spy

'I'm a realist; I know how hard this business is'

Warwick Davis on Ricky Gervais, Harry Potter and his perfect role
The best swim shorts for men: Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer

The best swim shorts for men

Bag yourself the perfect pair and make a splash this summer
Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

Has Ukip’s Glastonbury branch really been possessed by the devil?

Meet the couple blamed for bringing Lucifer into local politics
Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup