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Wednesday 04 June 2003
Mancs and Scousers - a grudging respect?
Superlamb Banana
Super Lamb Banana in Liverpool

OK.. so we're big rivals on the football field. And both fiercely proud of our cities.

But isn't there a grudging respect between Manchester and Liverpool on the quiet?
Have Your Say

see also
'Rival' city supports culture bid
Have Your Say
Manchester City Council
Liverpool City Council
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Linked by the M62, East Lancs, Ship Canal and a shared industrial past, Manchester and Liverpool are not a million miles apart. Thirty-five to be more precise.

More recently, Manchester's been out in front with its massive urban regeneration, music and club scene and the Commonwealth Games. Oh yes, and there's Man United.

But many of us in Manchester are genuinely chuffed that Liverpool's now won the Capital of Culture bid. In fact, Manchester gave strong backing for the Liverpool bid. From BBC News: 'Rival' city supports culture bid

Why? Because in many ways we're not that different - both are vibrant, creative and fiercely independent Northern cities with much to be proud of.

So - football aside - are Mancs and Scousers more alike than we dare to admit? Or does the rivalry run too deep? And what do you think of Liverpool's success?
Have Your Say

From Rob in Birmingham
I think Manchester will suffer considerably as a result of Liverpool being awarded the European Capital of Culture title for 2008. Any outside investors looking at the North West will now choose Liverpool as the more up and coming city! Manchester will also lose out on all the handouts it has so often been given by the government to finance it's prestigious projects. It might then have to compete on a level playing field with Birmingham, who have been forced to construct virtually all of their prestigious projects eg the NEC, Symphony Hall, NIA, New Bull Ring, Eastside etc through private finance.

From Anna in Liverpool
I like both cities. Its quite silly that some people can't just get along, no matter where they're from. I'm from widnes, which is near Liverpool (fantastic city) but I think Manchester probably has more going on as a whole. I think Liverpool's Capital of Culture status will make the North West thrive like never before. So both cities will get their fair dues.

From chris parker in hyde cheshire
me mams a scouser married to a salfordian, so i have a duel nationality!

From Chris in Manchester
I agree with Cath in Parma. For me personally at least I am delighted that the government has realised that culture does indeed exist in the north and hope that Liverpool can experience similar improvements that Manchester has seen these past few years. Hopefully their accolade will help the region become the real heart of the country.

From Em Felton in Liverpool
As a typical scouser, i wud love to shove our recent award in the mancs' faces and laugh, but being more polite than that, i will restrict myself to saying. Ha.

From Jonathan in Manchester
As a southerner who has lived in Liverpool and now lives in Manchester, I think it is great news for both cities. There is already far more inter-relation between them than most people realise and the whole region (and indeed country) needs a strong Manchester and a strong Liverpool. Well done Liverpool.

From Cath in UK
I have 'got real'. A young student from Liverpool, studying in Manchester, was murdered recently in the city. There are people from Liverpool who are scared to open their mouths in Manchester in case their accent provokes trouble.

From Dan in Manchester, England
Yes, football may be an important part of many people's lives, but recognise this - when was Britain at its Strongest? When the 'old industrial heartlands' of the North West were at their strongest. Why? Because friendly rivalry creates ideas, which create jobs and prosperity. Sport is the visable rivalry. Strip out the violent minority, and you are left with people striving against each other to be the best. What we see now is competition between two cities, united in competing with the rest of the UK. Maintain this, and, with support from Whitehall, our region will save the South-East from overcrowding and collapse, and emerge as a strong region of prosperity for all who live in it. With the right management, we can do well for ourselves, the UK and Europe.

From cath in parma, italy
There will always be a friendly rivalry between liverpool and manchester. I'm glad its gone to liverpool.The most important thing is that it didn't go to Birmingham....for any true northerner that would have been unbearable.

From Shirley Ann in Manchester
Considering that some of you refer to yourselves as "intelligent and cultured" people, i find it interesting that you are so disturbed by Ant Sutton's comments. To take him so seriously to me is ridiculous, considering that he is obviously a football fan his disgust is expected. Cath, to believe that such comments are "dangerous" is laughable, get real. Yet perhaps what Ant rightly picks up on is that we mancunians, that is to say, the average man in manchester could not care less about such awards. If perhaps such an effort were vested into 'real' issues, such as improving impovrished areas such as Mosside, levenshulme, longsight, Toxteth or Kirby then maybe we would take you seriously. Its about time culture took a back seat, and instead of trying to figure out if there is a rivalry between the two cities, what we should be doing is adressing real life and real poverty evident in both cities. I have to agree with Ants non- serious mentality concerning this issue. Who cares about cultural awards, not us in the real world, not us that saw how the front of Mosside was made to look respectable in the name of the Commenwealth Games in order to impress visitors who would never see the reality behind the scenes.

From Steve Brunt in London
There's nothing wrong with the city of Liverpool, it's the people who live in it us Mancs don't like. Putting the rivalries aside, the two cities should develop better links and challenge London's unimaginative domination of the real investment - government and commercial funding. Together, the two cities would have far more to offer than this over-priced concrete county.

From Tony in Liverpool
I agree with a lot of Eleanor's comments but the one thing this award will give Liverpool, is a much needed confidence boost. For years the media have portryaed Liverpool in a bad light- rubbishing it's achievements etc. The city has a lot more to offer than The Beatles trail, just as Birmingham has more than the RSC at Stratford and the Shakespeare trail- but to ignore these attractions would be madness. I think the one great thing we can get out of this, is a shaking off of the hackneyed stereotype- a city wasted, full of wasters. It's time for Liverpool to look forward and I can think of nowhere in the country that deserves that kind of break, as nowhere in the country has been the target of a vindictive and manipulative media. That includes you too BBC (anyone see Liquid News last night? Disgusting).

From Eleanor Giles in London
My only problem with Liverpool winning this award (as a Manc) is that Liverpool, like Manchester, has had so much urban re-generation money pumped into it in the last few years, that winning an award which means it will get even more is unfair. The money already hanging around the city has enabled its 'culture' to come through, and it is standing tall because of it. The award should have gone to another city that really needed more extra money to develop the undernourished cultural aspects it had. If the publicity Liverpool has given itself is to be believed, it doesn't need any more legs up in the cultural stakes. I know the fact that the Beatles once lived there makes it a pilgrimage for tourists, but if the national trust have already listed lennon's council house, then does Liverpool really need more subsidies and help? shouldn't a city with as much cultural diversity yet less obvious tourist beacons be given a chance? Manchester, and Liverpool, are b! oth doing just fine. The award and subsequent financial boosts should have been given to other, less obvious beacons of tourist driven culture.
From Tony Higgins in Liverpool
In reply to Ant- here's one Scouser who doesn't hate Mancs. On the contrary, I studied at Manchester Poly, lived there for over three years (Didsbury), have many friends there- including my closest friend, shop there, spend my money there, eat there..I could go on. If there is a division, it's because people like you (let me guess, a football fan..?) choose to keep those old wounds open. Manchester is a fantastic city. It's reinvented itself brilliantly since I studied there in the early 80's and benefited from major investment. Liverpool has been coming up slowly behind. Don't you think, Ant, that this region of ours is great because of TWO very different, culturally diverse cities? What other region in England can boast that? And- for your information, Bagdad would never have been considered for nomination as it's not a European city. The vast majority of scousers were pleased at the success of the Commonwealth Games and applauded Manchester for pullin! g ! off such a stunning event. I know it suits small minded bigots to believe there's some kind of turf war going on here but it's simply not true. I think it's time for people to grow up and look to the future. Manchester- I love you!
From Mike in Manchester
I think itelligent and cultured people out there realise there is no reason to hate Liverpool. Manchester has more of an international outlook nowadays and is becoming too grown up and sophisticated to indulge in petty backyard rivalries. Liverpool is the same. We are slowly beginning to realise that having 2 potentially world class cities in one region (the NW) is a huge asset - an asset that few other regions can rival. Working together can only further increase the benefits for the whole NW.

From Kevin in Merseyside
Liverpool and Manchester, two great northern cities with a rich and culturely diverse history. I believe that Liverpool. like Manchester is a GREAT city with a modern city which is forward looking. Any attempt to rubbish our name is surely doomed to fail. We've had the worst the media can throw at us and we've come out with our heads raised high. It is our strenghts which define us, not our failings.

P.S. I hate football fullstop. Maybe that's why I like Manchester so much. The people are great, the city is great, but so is Liverpool. If only we all realised that and joined together more often. Then we would be supreme

From Proud to be Mancunian in M/c
Some of my best mates are scousers so as a Fiercely proud Manc (i wouldn't ever want to be anything else - I'm Mancunian, not English - I say I am v.chuffed for them - because its good for the region. It shows we can do things just as well as London as we all know - the Commonwealth Games, and now this. Hands down the east lancs road!

From Andy in Douglas, Isle of Man
Sorry to dissapoint you Ant but Bagdad and Soweto are not in europe and could not therefore be in the running for European Capital of Culture!

You are also wrong in your opinion that mancs and scousers hate each other equally. Yes the cities football teams are more than rivals but there is at least a genuine respect there by those closely related to the clubs.

Having studies at Liverpool Uni for 4 years I know lots of other mancs in Liverpool with scouse mates who equally enjoy coming to Manchester. Credit where its due, Liverpool deserves a break as its always the butt of undeserved jokes - manchester was in a similar position until recently, I hope Liverpool build on this and make the NorthWest a great place to live.

In summary Ant, you're so far out of touch I can not begin to explain!

From Andy Murdoch in Manchester
friendly intelligent mancunians are pleased. the generosity of spirit in ant sutton's comments are wonderful illustrative of the new outward looking community in the North West. if any mancunians want a unique cultural night out try the Philamonic Hall film nights.

From Gill in Salford
There is nothing wrong with friendly rivalry but, in a competition in which Manchester was not taking part, there is no reason not to congratulate our near neighbours on their good fortune. Luckily the 'football hooligan mentality' exists only in a certain type of person and most rational people in Manchester will realise that we can only benefit from sharing in the events and expansion that will be happening just down the road. I visit Liverpool regularly for shows which are not coming to Manchester and events being held at the Albert Dock, such as the forthcoming Mersey River Festival, and by doing so get the best of both cities.

From Cath in UK
The people of Manchester and Liverpool have more similarities than differences - including a stubborness to recognise this! Prejudice and division between cities and regions is something that should concern all of us. How about doing cultural exchanges between the two cities - and across the country -
so that others don't become so ignorant and dangerous.
Resentment usually happens when one place is favoured over another, so seeing how Manchester is doing so well at the moment I don't know why it should resent Liverpool one bit.

From Andy Murdoch in manchester
friendly intelligent mancunians are pleased. the generosity of spirit in ant sutton's comments are wonderful illustrative of the new outward looking community in the North West. if any mancunians want a unique cultural night out try the Philamonic Hall film nights.

From Andy Griffith in Woking, Surrey
Actually, the Capital of Culture bid was against Newcastle/Gateshead, Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff and Oxford. I'm pleased Liverpool won it, despite being a Manc (although currently, hopefully temporarily, exiled in Surrey). Despite the rivalry, the two cities have far more in common than either of them do with Birmingham or London, for example, and where Liverpool benefitted from the proximity of last year's Commonwealth Games, I'm sure Manchester will benefit from Liverpool's 2008 Capital of Culture title. Both events can be viewed as a triumph for the North West as a whole, and that's no bad thing. Well done you scousers, I say.

From Nc in Wigan
A fine example of 'Mancunian' Culture form Ant in Stretford.

From Ant Sutton, Stretford, Manchester
I can't think why any true Mancunian would be "genuinely chuffed" why Liverpool "won" the capital of Culture bid. Who was the competition....Bagdad and Soweto? Liverpool are second rate to us Mancs in all ways. Mancs hate scousers, Scousers hate Mancs. It has and always will be the case. Trying to get people who are not clued up to praise Liverpool is a waste of time. We don't like them or there City so why pretend otherwise. I am sure if we had gone up for Capital of Culture we would have beaten Liverpool, Bagdad and Soweto hands down.


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