Friday 2 December 2011

December 2nd, 2011 - Friday

Location: Midland Hotel, phone booth 1
Designer: Valerie Johnston, creative artist, ice skater & guitarist - @valeriebeatcity

Location Notes: One of the iconic hotels of Manchester that over the course of 100+ years has hosted many a celebrity and royalty as well. Its Grade II* listed grand red-brick facade protects an opulent interior. It was built by the Midland Railway Company in 1903 to serve the Manchester Central railway station behind and started life with a covered walkway between the two (demolished after WWII). It was famously the meeting place of Mr Rolls and Mr Royce, leading to the formation of Rolls-Royce Ltd in 1906.

Shrine Notes: This is one of five shrines to be located at the hotel, occupying a no-longer-in-use phone booth. Where people used to connect to one another using the phone, make time to connect with God instead. The hotel represents a time of power in industry, linking to the train station and the engine manufacturer. Pray to God for strength and help in learning, creativity and ingenuity. Imagine the audible pound of industry transforming into the musical beating heart of the city.

Designer Notes: I had a lot of fun designing this shrine. Manchester is the centre of the music industry and I wanted my shrine to reflect Pop Art Music and the tradition of carols at Christmas. All of my Christmases in Manchester have been focused on music. Music brings people together in many ways. Whether it be singing Christmas carols or going downtown to hear the latest dance tracks with a fantastic back beat. Manchester is literally Beat City and celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ does not have to be boring. Get out there with the people! Get out of the suburbs and come downtown to the city! Dance! Have fun! Where all the lights are bring! Happy Christmas Manchester!!

Feel free to write about your thoughts and experiences with this shrine, or how you've seen people using it, as a comment (see below) or tweet @sanctus1mcr.


  1. Designer says "Was weird to see my shrine in an opulent hotel when it has been sitting on top of an old unused television in my kitchen all week."

  2. I went to the Midland Hotel just now to check on my shrine. It has been moved at angle since I had last seen it so it revealed its side Merry Christmas Beat City but the front was still visable. It did look better at an angle. The 45 record and music sheets on the bottom of the shrine had come unstuck and had been shoved forward so I had to put them back in and restick them. Now it is looking more like its normal self. In case you are wondering what the 45 records are. They are not famous bands or singers. Not worth anything in the collectors market.