Cathedral of books

This imposing building in the Deansgate area of central Manchester is the colour of dirty caramel. It sounds unprepossessing, but stands out among the sharp contemporary glass of its modern neighbours. But you have to venture inside the John Rylands Library to be truly impressed.

It was opened in 1900 as a memorial to Rylands by his wife, and its Gothic splendour is more in keeping with a place of worship. Stained glass, ornate stone columns and intricate woodwork make the library a reverential place to study and learn. It’s a building both flooded with light and full of dark, muted corners. I’ve captured my first architectural gem in this city…


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