Location: Midland Hotel, phone booth 2
Designer: Sarah Lowe, Housewife and Mother
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 the second of five shrines to be located at the hotel, occupying a no-longer-in-use phone booth. Hotels and inns have been places of gathering, shelter and hospitality for centuries. This shrine relates to part of the Christmas story, where Mary and Joseph were trying to find somewhere to stay in Bethlehem, but all the hotels were booked up. Pray for those needing shelter and warmth on these cold winter nights.
Designer Notes: As I considered this wonderful hotel location, the words ‘no room for them in the inn’ (Luke 2:7b) came to me. I thought again of the Christmas story when Mary and Joseph were unable to find accommodation and were forced to stay in a stable. It made me think of people today who are unable to find shelter and warmth. I decided to make this shrine from their perspective, outside the hotel, looking in on the festivities. The view is one familiar to all of us in B&B windows at seaside resorts and the Christmas lights behind the net curtain hint of fun and enjoyment within.
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.