This sounds like an unfortunate case of cruising gone wrong. It could of been the man was simply walking and slipped into the canal and couldn’t get out. We shouldn’t assume that there was anything sinister about this case. Manchester as a whole is a pretty safe nightlife scene. I just hope that the police and council take note and make the area just a little safer for people.
Equally, it could be a person intoxicated and slipping into the canal.
Without more information from either witnessing the event or the police investigation – we are both speculating.
I hope those with information contact police and help them solve the events leading to this death – so that friends and family of the deceased can put to rest any anxieties they may have.
The body was found (between Aytoun Street and Minshull Street) at the end of the “usual” cruising area. There is a lock gate just the other side of the Aytoun Street bridge, so the water flows from the Undercroft (major cruising spot) towards Canal Street.
It could be mere coincidence that he’s walked through that area, but given that it stinks, is scattered with litter, is mostly underground and is known as a notorious gay cruising spot, I suspect this may be more sinister than it appears.
My thoughts go to the lad’s family and friends.
The police need to look for the anti-gay Christian with blood on their hands.
I have always thought that the canals in Manchester should be better fenced off, because it would be very easy to slip and fall in , drunk or sober. Also, unfortunately very easy for some thug to just push someone in and it is almost impossible to get out again unassisted.
From the bits of the canal that I have walked along – I don’t think I have been to this specific bit – falling in intoxicated would not be difficult and escaping any sort of attack etc would be difficult.
Unfortunately, Paddyswurds, canals in this country have enormous recreational value and fencing them off is not the answer. Should we fence off roads as well?
The towpath on the Rochdale Canal where it passes through Manchester’s Gay Village is a popular cruising area and as with any other al-fresco cruising activity carries some risk. Having said that we must keep an open mind regarding that unfortunate man’s death and not become unduly concerned as it is may not necessarily be a homophobic attack.
The canals played a major part in taking Britain into the Industrial Revoloution and when commercial traffic declined in the mid-20th centuary, enthusiasts began using them for pleasure boating. Our canals provide a different perspective on our country and are rich in history. Whether you are on a narrowboat or on the towpath there is a wealth of architecture, museums and canalside pubs to enjoy.
Well actually most roads are fenced off outside urban areas. Fencing off canals in urban areas would have no detrimental affect on the recreational utility of canals and I fail to see how you would think otherwise.. When i say fenced off obviously one doesn’t mean 6 foot hoardings but the discreet metal railings often used on corners, at traffic lights and at ped. crossings in urban areas, and other exceptionally dangerous areas.As in these cases, the railings need only be used in areas similar to the Canal street area of Manchester
I am well aware of the history of canals both in the UK and elsewhere in the world and don’t require a geography lesson from you, but the type of railing I advocate is in use in many of those places, Amsterdam for example.
It is so frustrating when one has to paint graphic pictures on these threads in order for some people to get what one means…sheesh.
I do agree canals are both historically, and in places aesthetically, part of the UK cultural history.
In some areas consideration could be given by either the Waterways Board, local authorities or both as to whether additional public safety measures might be appropriate to specific locations. Some canals do have fencing. Some canals are covered by CCTV.
However, a certain element of personal responsibility and awareness is important too. Its not possible to plan for every event; its not appropriate in every location. However, like Paddyswurds there have been some urban canals where I have felt that more care could be taken due to the risk of falling and extreme proximity to the night economy and the strong likelihood of intoxicated revellers falling into the canal.
I am not saying this is what happened in this instance – it may or may not be.
It appears this case may now be a murder inquiry: