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With its cobbled streets, attractive waterways and mixture of the ancient and cutting edge, Castlefield is a unique part of the city centre. Archeological digs have uncovered a Roman Fort and other signs of early settlement in Castlefield, which mark it out as the oldest part of the city. People have lived on the site since that time but it was the Industrial Revolution that really left its mark; canals, mills and huge warehouses still dominate the area today.
Like most places closely linked with industry, Castlefield suffered badly when the factories and mills closed down. By the 1980's and 1990's, the area had degenerated into an unpopulated, crime ridden, innercity wasteland. However, it was declared England's first Urban Heritage site in 1992 and received a huge amount of money for regeneration and restoration after the IRA bomb in 1996. This led to the Castlefield we see today – an area defined by its quaint cobbled streets, converted mills and peaceful waterways.
Castlefield was also the first place in Manchester to profit from the 'city centre living' boom. The area is now a playground for professionals who appreciate living with everything the centre has to offer on their doorstep. Close links to the motorways and Deansgate station make it ideal for commuters, while those working in the city itself can walk to and from work in minutes. There are also some fantastic bars and restaurants in the area, including Atlas, Evuna, Dimitris and the popular Dukes 92.
The area is saturated with new developments and conversions, but building continues nonetheless and demand remains high among both young professionals and childless older couples. It is a good choice for those wishing to invest in property. With businesses flooding into Manchester and congestion charging looking increasingly likely, this quietly vibrant area looks set to remain a favourite among renters and buyers alike.