The first Chinese immigrants arrived in Manchester in the early 20th century but the biggest wave of Chinese immigration came in the 1950s. They were Hakkanese from the New Territories of Hong Kong as the government had decided to build on their land to cater for the growing population. This left the people with low factory wages so immigration became their best option. The first Chinese restaurant opened in 1948 named ‘Ping Hong’. In 1987, the completion of Manchester's Chinatown archway was the largest in Europe at that time. Manchester's Chinatown on Faulkner Street is the second largest in Britain after London's Soho Chinatown. Wai Yin Chinese Women Society is the largest Chinese community organisation in the UK.

  • Date: 14-Dec-2009
  • Place:
    • Wai Yin Chinese Womens Society, Woolwich House, 61 Mosley Street, Manchester, Lancashire, M2 3HZ
    • Piccadilly Plaza, Manchester, Lancashire M1, UK
    • Imperial Archway, Chinatown, 57 Faulkner Street, Manchester, M1 4FF
    • Former site of Kam Han Chinese Restaurant, 34 Charlotte Street, Manchester, M1 4FD
    • Former site of Hong Kong Restaurant, 3 Piccadilly Plaza, Manchester, M1 3BN, UK
    • Former site of Lee Moy Han’s Laundrette, 21 Princess Road, Manchester, M2 4DN
    • Former site of Hon Chung’s Laundrette, 22 Lloyd Street Manchester, United Kingdom, M60
    • Ho’s Bakery, 46 Faulkner Street, Greater Manchester, M1 4, UK

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14 December 2009

The same team members for Interview team & City team (I was trying to simplify it to “A & B teams” but everyone wants to be in “A team”; so we had identify the team with a proper name). The City team went out for a photo trip in Manchester Chinatown while the rest of us remained in the hotel waiting for our interviewee – Mrs Juanita Yau, the Chair of Wai Yin Chinese Women Society. After the interview we joined the City Team in Chinatown and went for Dim Sum with Juanita, plus Lisa Mok, the deputy Director of Wai Yin. Lisa told us more about their works and showed us around Wai Yin after lunch. Oh yes, women are definitely brighter than men!

The City team couldn’t find the old site of “Ping Hong” but they found a nice bakery shop, so they went in and had an informal interview with the owner and as a result we had a full supply of snacks for the day.

- Chungwen Li

 

We the "A" team (City team) went out to the cold again while the "B" team (Interview team) remained in the warm cosy hotel.

When we arrived at the Manchester Chinatown, the weather turned even colder and started to snow and rain at times.  So we went into a coffee shop to shelter ourselves until the weather improved.  Afterward we wandered around Chinatown to take pictures.  While wandering around Chinatown we noticed a bakery shop at the corner of the street and at that moment I was feeling peckish.  So I told my team mates that being a diabetic sufferer, I needed to eat often to maintain my sugar level.  They were reluctant at first as we just had our coffee break, but I led the way inside the shop anyway.  The shop was nicely decorated and the displays were so inviting.  I just wanted to sample everything like a young kid.  I even managed to have something there that I have not had for over 35 years.   While we were eating, I observed the shop assistants; they were all so friendly and helpful to their customers.  We then started talking to the shop assistants, and that led to an informal interview.  What a story too!  In London I have not come across a bakery shop with such a high standard of customer care and displays.  I could stay here and eat all day, but journey has to continue...

- by Ricky Law