British Culture Archive Presents: The People's City - A Celebration of Life in the North West during the 1980s-90s.

“Britain is a cultural melting pot influenced by other nations. We take a look back at everyday life, growing up in our towns and communities. The music, fashion, politics, and passions that defined and united us through good and bad times.” – Paul Wright. Founder (British Culture Archive).

The People’s City exhibition is our touring exhibition, featuring selected works from our featured photographers below:

Peter J Walsh

During his time at Manchester’s City Life Magazine in the late 1980s, photographer Peter J. Walsh was in the right place at the right time. He became immersed in Manchester’s revolutionary Acid House club and rave scene, documenting many hedonistic nights at the Hacienda.

Peter captured the early years of the UK’s Acid House explosion in the city and documented the many faces and colorful fashions that graced The Hacienda’s dancefloor as the city became a cultural mecca and global exporter of music and fashion.

Temperance Club, Hacienda, 1991.
Temperance Club at The Haçienda, 1990.

Photo © Peter J Walsh.

Richard Davis

Richard Davis (b. 1965) is a British social documentary and portrait photographer from Birmingham, UK.

After moving to Manchester in 1988 to study photography at the city’s Polytechnic, Richard lived in Hulme, which at the time was the largest public housing development in Europe. His photographs document everyday life on the estate, which was dominated by four brutalist crescents named after the architects Robert Adam, Charles Barry, John Nash, and William Kent.

Hulme Crescents Manchester, 1990.
Charles Barry Crescent. Hulme, 1990.

Photo © Richard Davis.

Rob Bremner

Rob Bremner is a social and documentary photographer from Britain who was born in Wick, Scotland.

He left Scotland to study in Wallasey, where he got to know celebrated photographers Tom Wood and Martin Parr. While in college, Tom taught and Rob assisted him in the darkroom. During weekends, he would follow Tom and Martin around the faded resort of New Brighton as they documented the area.

Later, Rob was accepted into David Hurn’s School of Documentary Photography in Newport. It was around this time that he started to take photos of the Everton and Vauxhall areas of Liverpool, which were at that time the third most deprived areas in Britain with the highest rate of arson in Europe.

Bremner’s photos depict the mood of those times, as well as everyday life, friendly faces, and local personalities who were proud of their city and their communities.
Johnny and Pat, Vauxhall, 1987 by Rob Bremner.
Johnny and Pat. Vauxhall, Liverpool, 1987.

Photo © Rob Bremner.

Exhibition Dates

 The Refuge, Manchester | January, 2020 – January, 2021.

Manchester Central Library | January – March, 2022


British Culture Archive Exhibition Manchester Rob Bremner
The People's City Exhibition Poster.

Photo © Rob Bremner.
British Culture Archive Founder Paul Wright and Luke Unabomber
Luke Unabomber and Paul Wright.
British Culture Archive The People's City Exhibition
Richard Davis Gallery

Photo © Paul Wright.
British Culture Archive Beermat The People's City
British Culture Archive Exhibition Beermat For The People's City.
The People's City Launch Party, 2020.
The People's City Launch, 2020.
British Culture Archive Tom Oxley and Paul Wright
The People's City Launch, 2020.