The Spirit of Castlefield podcast launches in celebration of Manchester’s Castlefield Viaduct opening

Castlefield Forum, the Manchester charity for preserving and enhancing the Castlefield area, is set to launch a new podcast series to mark the much-anticipated opening of the Castlefield Viaduct project and celebrate its unique spirit.

Built in 1892, and redundant since 1969, the Castlefield Viaduct is a core part of Manchester’s remarkable industrial heritage.

Led by the National Trust, the Grade II listed structure has recently been transformed into a temporary, urban sky garden. Castlefield Forum have played an active role in the pilot project, as one of the partners who will host a community plot on the site.

To mark the opening, Castlefield Forum have created The Spirit of Castlefield podcast in partnership with Manchester-based audio production experts Voiceworks, part of the Communicorp Group.

As the viaduct opens to the public, the podcast helps listeners to take a deeper dive into the stories behind the conservation area and Castlefield Forum’s involvement in the viaduct scheme.

The new podcast series sees individual stories of the area brought to life through audio retellings, split into three main parts.

The People will cover the stories of living, working, and playing in the area, as well as a look to the future.

The Plot will investigate the making of Castlefield Forum’s community designed space on the viaduct, from planting schemes to artwork and design.

The Place is all about Castlefield’s unique heritage and culture, shining a light onto the area’s origins and how it developed into the place it is today.

All episodes of The Spirit of Castlefield will be released on 1 August. Special podcast guests include renowned former record producer and television presenter, Peter Waterman.

B Hunter, Trustee at Castlefield Forum, commented: “The transformation of the Castlefield Viaduct is a crucial moment in the area’s rich history, and we wanted to help bring this to life. The Spirit of Castlefield does just that, sharing the viaduct’s history and the journey the community has taken to get it to where it is today.

“It is a real love letter to the area, and we are excited for people to listen – maybe as they stroll along the fabulous skyline space. Our thanks go to the Voiceworks team for their guidance and support in bringing the series together. We were delighted to collaborate with a local Manchester business to be able to share these stories with a wider audience.”

Kyle Evans, head of content at Voiceworks, said: “Castlefield is steeped in history, from a Roman settlement to playing a crucial role in Britain’s industrialisation, it’s now a vibrant place in which to live and work. We have loved producing this series to tell its story from all angles and really bring its vast history to life for the Manchester community.”

Sophie Hind, managing director at Voiceworks, said: “Working with the Castlefield Forum team over these last few months to bring such an important part of Manchester’s culture and history to life has been brilliant.

“The podcast is an ideal way to present the rich heritage of Castlefield, each episode letting us get under the skin of the people that made it what it is today. We hope listeners enjoy The Spirit of Castlefield as much as we enjoyed creating it.”

The Spirit of Castlefield will launch on 1 August and will be available on all popular streaming platforms, and visitors of the park will be encouraged to listen to the audio series whilst there.

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