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pride of manchester awards 2004 | the best of manchester 2004
Darren Campbell celebrates winning gold at the 2004 Olympics

It's been a great year for Manchester culture. There's been some amazing albums released by the biggest musical icons the city has ever produced, some astounding sporting achievements from our best athletes and some hilarious television moments captured by our finest actors. But what have you got excited about this year? We're inviting members of the Pride Of Manchester mailing list to vote on their best moments of 2004...

Conditions of voting: To vote, you must be a member of the Pride Of Manchester mailing list (click here to join). To prevent vote rigging, unsubscribers from the mailing list will also have their votes removed.

As everybody has their own personal opinion on what is good and bad, we've decided to keep this an open vote, so there's no influencing the final result by giving you a short-list to choose from. If you're not sure or don't want to vote on a particular catergory, just leave your answer blank. All we ask is that you vote for people who come from Manchester or the surrounding region. We'll also accept votes for those people, not strictly Mancs, but have a Manchester connection (ie, City Life Magazine have previously awarded David Beckham and Johnny Vegas the title of Mancunian Of The Year). To help jog your memory, here's a few reminders of what happened in 2004...

Morrissey made a successful return in 2004

Manchester Music: What a year! We've had the first Morrissey album in 7 years, the debut solo album from former James frontman Tim Booth, and highly acclaimed albums from both Ian Brown, Badly Drawn Boy and The Charlatans. Salford tenor Russell Watson returned with another chart smash and we were treated to compilation albums from The Bee Gees, The Verve, New Order, Chemical Brothers, Durutti Column, The Buzzcocks, and ex-Take That cheeky chappie, Robbie Williams. Lisa Stansfield and Haven failed to regain previous chart success, whilst others missing out on commercial success included Fingathing, Homelife, Proud Mary, The Earlies, Stephen Fretwell, Rebelski and Moco. Mr Scruff and Aim both remixed compilation CD's, whilst Lamb had a busy year with 3 album releases. It's also been a notable year for X-Final star Rowetta, former Hollies frontman Graham Nash, and the Manchester born and bred BBC Philharmonic Orchestra who celebrated their 70th anniversary in 2004.

Album releases of note: Robbie Williams - Greatest Hits (reached UK no.1, Oct) / Morrissey - You Are The Quarry (UK no.2 in May) / Ian Brown - Solarized (UK no.7, Sep) / Bee Gees - Number One's (UK no.7, Nov) / Chemical Brothers - Singles (UK no.9, Jan) / Badly Drawn Boy - One Plus One Is One (UK no.9, July) / Russell Watson - Amore Musica (UK no.10, Nov) / The Charlatans - Up At The Lake (UK no.13, May) / The Verve - This Is Music (UK no.15, Nov) / Non-charting albums: Haven - All For A Reason (March) / New Order - Radio One Sessions (April) Fingathing - Fingathing & the Big Red Nebula Band (May) / Tim Booth - Bone (June) / Lamb - Best Kept Secrets (June) / Lamb - Back To Mine (July) / The Earlies - These Were The Earlies (July) / Lamb - Ashes of the Wake (Aug) / Graham Nash & David Crosby - Crosby/Nash (Aug) / The Buzzcocks - Complete Singles Anthology (Aug) / Homelife - Guru Man Hubcap Lady (Aug) / Aim - Fabriclive17 (Aug) / Lisa Stansfield - The Moment (Sep) / Mr Scruff - Keep It Solid Steel (Sep) / Proud Mary - Love & Light (Sep) / Durutti Column - Best Of (Oct) / Moco - Out To Go (Nov) / Stephen Fretwell - Magpie (Nov)
Amir Khan wins silver at Athens

Manchester Sport: It was also another great year for Manchester sport. Manchester United won the FA Cup Final thanks to an amazing performance by Cristiano Ronaldo, who along with United team-mate Wayne Rooney was the best player at Euro 2004, from which Bolton's Stelios Giannakopoulos came home with a winners medal. It was another star from Bolton that emerged at the Athens Olympics...17 year old boxer Amir Khan finished with silver but the heart of the nation. Other Mancunian medalists included Darren Campbell (gold, 4x4 100m relay), Ben Ainslie (gold, sailing), Rob Hayles (silver & bronze, cycling), Steve Cummings (silver, cycling), Jeanette Brakewell (silver, equestrian), Stephen Parry (bronze, 200m butterfly). Meanwhile in rugby league, Wigan's Andy Farrell won both the Man of Steel and Golden Boot awards as well as an MBE after guiding the Warriors to the Challenge Cup final. Boxer Ricky Hatton contines to entertain by holding onto his WBU light welterweight title.

Manchester's Northern Quarter makes a great New York for Jude Law in Alfie

Manchester Movies: It's also been a busy year for Manchester's movie makers with the brilliant remake of Alfie being filmed in the city (albeit masquerading as New York) and Dead Man's Shoes also shot in the region. Salford actor Albert Finney turned in a brilliant performance in Big Fish, bettered only by the Oscar-nominated performance of his Salford mate, Ben Kingsley in House of Sand and Fog. Steve Coogan starred in his first Hollywood movie, Around The World In 80 Days, whilst Michael Winterbottom's 9 Songs, starring Kieran O'Brien, attracted massive controversy for it's explicit sex scenes. One of the best cinematic moments for Manchester United fans came in The Day After Tomorrow however the highlight of the year though, apart from Ian Brown's cameo in Harry Potter, must have been The Lord Of The Rings: The Return of the King which boasted a cast full of actors with Manchester connections including Ian McKellern (Gandalf), Bernard Hill (Theoden), Dominic Monaghan (Merry), and Andy Serkis (Gollum).

Movies of note: Alfie / Dead Man's Shoes / Lord Of The Rings (Bernard Hill, Dominic Monaghan, Andy Serkis & Ian McKellern) / The Day After Tomorrow / House Of Sand & Fog (Ben Kingsley) / Big Fish (Albert Finney) / Ocean's Twelve (Albert Finney) / Suspect Zero (Ben Kingsley) / Thunderbirds (Ben Kingsley) / Around The World In 80 Days (Steve Coogan) / Coffee & Cigarettes (Steve Coogan) / 9 Songs (Michael Winterbottom & Kieran O'Brien) / Code 46 (Michael Winterbottom) / Spivs (Dominic Monaghan) / The Purifiers (Dominic Monaghan)

Crime Won't Crack Itself! - the second series of Early Doors Law in Alfie

Manchester TV: Following the BBC's relocation of many key departments to Manchester, 2005 should see an influx of locally made programmes. Not that 2004 was short of any... Coronation Street battled it's way back up to the top of the ratings, and even included an hilarious cameo from Peter Kay who later also released Max & Paddy's Road To Nowhere. For many, it struggled to produce as many laughs as the brilliant second series of Early Doors and the Mancunian-packed All Star Comedy Show. The third series of Cutting It was arguably the best yet whilst the second series of BBC Three's superb Burn It went largely unnoticed as did the Manchester cast in their Runcorn-based Two Pints Of Lager & A Packet Of Crisps. Christmas provided us with a Shameless special and the brilliant Christmas Lights drama.

TV shows of note: Coronation Street / Cutting It / Burn It / Max & Paddy's Road To Nowhere / Early Doors / Shameless Christmas Special / Christmas Lights / All Star Comedy Show / Two Pints Of Lager & A Packet Of Crisps

Val McDermid returns with perhaps her best book yet

Manchester Literature: Manchester authors have been busy this year too, with International best-seller Val McDermid releasing perhaps her greatest crime thriller yet in The Torment of Others. Howard Jacobson's observational comedy, The Making of Henry won critical acclaim as did Suzannah Dunn's modernisation of Anne Boleyn in The Queen of Subtleties. Nicholas Blincoe's complex Burning Paris, Nicholas Royle's chilling Antwerp, Cath Staincliffe's Blue Murder, and Jane Roger's The Voyage Home also won praise. The New York Times described David Bowker's I Love My Smith & Wesson as "the Sopranos meets the Jackal in a part of England Agatha Christie knew absolutely nothing about" and Bowker also found time to release Rawhead In Love. Livi Michael returned with the latest instalment of Frank, the hero hamster, whilst Sherry Ashworth also entertained the kids with her brilliant thriller, Dream Travellers. There's also been some great autobiographies from the likes of Stuart Maconie, Robbie Williams and Northwich-born Paula Radcliffe. Other sports books of note include David Blatt's Manchester United Ruined My Wife, a title mimicking the book by Colin Shindler who also released George Best and 21 Others.

Books of note: Paula Radcliffe - My Story So Far / Robbie Williams - Feel / Val McDermid - The Torment of Others / Mark Simpson - Saint Morrissey / Stuart Maconie - Cider With Roadies / David Blatt - Manchester United Ruined My Life / Colin Shindler - George Best & 21 Others / Howard Jacobson - Making Of Henry / Suzannah Dunn - The Queen Of Subleties / Nicholas Royle - Antwerp / Livi Michael - Frank & The Flames Of Truth / Nicholas Blincoe - Burning Paris / Jane Rogers - The Voyage Home / David Bowker - Rawhead In Love / Cath Staincliffe - Blue Murder / David Bowker - I Love My Smith & Wesson / Sherry Ashworth - Dream Travellers

Other catergories: To help jog your memory, some votes already cast for other awards include (in alphabetical order):

Pub/Bar of the year: (suggestions) Corbierres / Living Room / Peveril Of The Peak / Rain Bar / Revolution (Deansgate Locks) / Sugar Lounge / The Bar, Chorlton / Tiger Tiger
Restaurant of the year: (suggestions) East / Gaucho Grill / Hurricane / Little Yang Sing / Marcello's Ristorante / Pacific / Teppan Yaki / Yang Sing
Hotel of the year: (suggestions) Alias Rossetti / Arora International / Campanile / Lowry / Manchester White House / Malmaison / Radisson Edwardian
Club of the year: (suggestions) B.E.D. / 42nd Street / 5th Avenue / Lucid / M-Two / Po Na Na / Sankey's Soap / South /
Best show: (suggestions) Eric Bibb (Bridgewater Hall) / Ian Brown (Apollo) Hanky Park (Lowry) / Kes (Royal Exchange) / Motorhead (Apollo) / Round The Horne (Lowry) / Simon & Garfunkel (MEN) / Snow Patrol (Apollo)

Funniest live comedian: (suggestions) Steve Coogan (An Evening Of Comedy, Apollo) / Mick Ferry / Dave Gorman (Googlewhack Adventure) / Peter Kay (An Evening Of Comedy, Apollo) / Archie Kelly (Jumping On The Bandwagon Tour) / Daniel Kitson / Justin Moorhouse / Slaughterhouse Live / Dave Spikey / Johnny Vegas

Best building: (suggestions) Bridgewater Hall / G-Mex / Imperial War Museum / The Lowry / Manchester town hall / Midland Hotel / Urbis
Worst building: (suggestions) Arndale Centre / City Gate apartments (Castlefield) / City Gate 2 (Trinity Way) / Ibis Manchester (Charles Street) / No.1 Piccadilly Gardens
Favourite moment: (suggestions) An Evening Of Comedy at the Apollo (Peter Kay, Steve Coogan, Justin Moorhouse etc) / City 4-1 United / Eric Sykes getting a CBE / Ian Brown asking if there was any Scousers in the house at the Apollo / Morrissey live in concert / Move Festival / Peter Kay in Corrie / United 4-2 City (FA Cup) / United 1-0 Arsenal (FA Cup Semi) / United 2-0 Arsenal (50 Not Out!) / United Not For Sale march /
Mancunian of the year: (suggestions) Tom Bloxham / Ian Brown / Craig Cash / Christopher Eccleston / Peter Kay / Dominic Monaghan / Morrissey / Dave Spikey
But what was your best moments of 2004?


Your name:
Your e-mail address:
Your city:
MUSIC: Best album of 2004 from a Manchester act:
Best song of 2004 from a Manchester act:
MOVIES/TV: Best film of 2004 with a Manchester connection:
Best TV show of 2004 with a Manchester connection:
Best performance of 2004 from a Manchester actor:
Most memorable Manchester TV/film moment of 2004:
SPORT: Manchester sports personality of 2004:
Best sporting performance of 2004:
GOING OUT: Manchester bar/pub of the year:
Manchester restaurant of the year:
Manchester hotel of the year:
Manchester club (or club night) of the year:
Best show/performance of 2004 at a Manchester venue:
Funniest live Manchester comedian (or live show) in 2004:
LITERATURE: Best (Manchester-related) book in 2004:
ARCHITECTURE: Best building in Manchester:
Worst building in Manchester:
MOMENT: Your favourite (Manchester-related) moment of 2004:
MANCUNIAN OF THE YEAR: Your favourite personality of 2004:
All votes will be counted on February 1st 2005. Votes will only be accepted from active members of the Pride Of Manchester mailing list (click here to join).
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