Greater Manchester Oral Histories

This is a composite collection created by the North West Sound Archive. It’s a real treasure trove of all kinds of oral history recordings, mainly held on cassette, minidisc and CD. We transferred many of the minidiscs and some of the CDs during lockdown in 2020.

The collection contains one-off oral history interviews conducted by the North West Sound Archive and interviews from a range of oral history projects across Greater Manchester including:

  • Friends of Victoria Baths, formed in 1993 to save the the Grade II* listed building. Interviews were conducted with former staff and attendees in 2000 and 2001 by the Friends group.
  • Manchester United Football Club museum interviewed supporters along with former players and staff for their oral history project between 1996 and 1999.
  • Ramsbottom Memories were recorded by Ramsbottom Heritage Centre throughout 2001 and 2002.
  • Bolton Little Theatre conducted interviews with current and past members. The project was ran by the Youth group and co-ordinated by former actor and producer Michael Tatman.
  • Hat Works the museum of hatting, housed in a former mill in Stockport interviewed former hatting industry workers to add to their research collection during 2001.
  • Astley Hospital was initially used as an isolation hospital and later as a general hospital from 1948. The former manor house is now part of the Morts Astley Heritage Trust. In 2001 a series of interviews were conducted with former patients and staff.
  • Gorton Monastery and memories of Gorton were captured in 2001 by The Monastery of St Francis & Gorton Trust.
  • Belle Vue interviews with former staff and family members were recorded between 2001 and 2002.
  • Ladysmith barracks in Ashton became the depot and headquarters of the Manchester Regiment. Former soldiers who served and completed their national service were interviewed throughout 2002.
  • Ere and Gelede Masquerade project – interviews about African and Caribbean dance traditions organised by Manchester Yoruba group Ebunsola and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.


image: Turkish Cooling Rooms, Victoria Baths, 1905 (m51810)

audio: Mrs Dudley recalls how she never used Turkish baths but wanted to (OH/1527)


The full length interviews are available in the Archives+ search room at Manchester Central Library.

You can read the full descriptions online at the British Library’s Sound and Moving Image catalogue. The British Library collection reference is UAP007. The local reference is OH.


Remembering Victoria Baths


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