54. Walking around

I’ve always loved travelling solo. It allows me to be spontaneous, forces me to think fast and well, gives me the opportunity to find myself and new things.

I did just that on my first day here in Manchester. After a big breakfast (the catered food here is pretty awesome, I’ve got to say that) and making new friends during breakfast, I bundled myself up in layers of clothing and followed a fellow student to the city centre. We parted ways in the city and I began my little adventure…


My first stop was Primark, which by the way, will absolutely be the death of me. I had to use up so much willpower just to resist shopping like crazy!! There are so many sales going on right now, I am just…. 😦 I must remind myself that I need to save up for travelling so yes, travel > shopping, Atikah!

So in an effort to wrestle myself away from the lures of consumerism, I went on a little walking tour around the area. My goodness, I’m in love with the buildings!

Got hungry halfway so I sat down in the little park/courtyard to have a bite, people-watch and play with pigeons! It was freezing by the way, but whatever. 😛

Trams in the middle of the city. Get out of my way yo!

Continued my little exploration, ventured out of the city centre and got absolutely lost. You know, the kind where you have no idea where you are, can’t find yourself on the map (that, and maybe cos you’re absolutely hopeless at reading maps, like me) and well, there aren’t a lot of people to ask for directions.

It took me a second to think: to panic or to continue walking?

In my gungho-ness, I decided to keep on walking. Hey, who knows? I’d probably get to see some really interesting stuff. And oh boy! I DID!

I saw it first from afar and I knew, I just knew that I’ve stumbled upon something beautiful.

I’m a self-confessed history freak. I love anything that has a story of its own that dates back decades and centuries. One look at this building and I knew it was my lucky day.

Look at this beauty! I found the old fire station!

That’s the coroner’s court!

I found out when I got back that the building was built in 1906 and was designed in the Edwardian Baroque style in red brick and terracotta.

In addition to a fire station, the building housed a police station, an ambulance station, a bank, a Coroner’s Court, and a gas-meter testing station. The fire station operated for 80 years, housing the firemen, their families, and the horse drawn appliances that were replaced by motorised vehicles a few years after its opening. It was visited by royalty in 1942, in recognition of the brigade’s wartime efforts. After the war it became a training centre and in 1952 became the first centre equipped to record emergency calls. However the fire station became expensive to maintain and after council reorganisation decline set in.

Horse drawn appliances beb! 

Walked some more and found this next!

My oh my, isn’t she gorgeous!

See these panels? Each row has a different face on it! I wonder what it represents….

I also found the Manchester Islamic Centre!

It’s not exactly a mosque, more like a gathering point for the Muslims here. There’re prayer rooms, a library and a bookstore! It’s relatively close to my place so I guess I’ll drop by again some time soon.

I eventually managed to find my way back to my hall, alhamdulillah, so yay! I’ll be heading out for another walking tour today (probably heading to Old Trafford!!!) so I’ll be back again soon, inshaallah.

Till the next time, keep me in your prayers please! ❤

One thought on “54. Walking around

  1. Asalaamu alaikum sister! I stumbled upon your blog while casually searching for female Muslim travellers (just to see if there’s many of us around!) and I love that you have a blog post about Manchester 😀 I am English and lived in Manchester for 8 years. I moved back to my home town just under a year ago and miss Manchester loads! I’m three years late on discovering your blog – had I found it while you were still in the city I would have definitely invited you to join me to my favourite mosque! And I have to say I’m so glad you stumbled upon the old fire station – I passed it so regularly and never ever got tired of gazing at its beauty! May Allah bless you in everything you do ❤

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