Welcome to Then and Now, where each week we compare images of Manchester streets, landmarks and buildings from bygone days with how they look now.

This week our main image shows Strangeways Prison, now known as HM Prison Manchester, at the height of the 25-day riot in April 1990.

The disturbance began on April 1st when inmates took control of the prison chapel. The riot quickly spread through most of the prison and developed into a rooftop protest.

A high-pressure hose used by riot police can clearly be seen. Roof tiles were torn away in the extensive damage caused by the protest, which led a repair bill of around £55 million.

 
The Strangeways riot, the longest in British penal history, eventually ended on April 25th when the final five prisoners were escorted from the rooftop.

One prisoner was killed during the disturbance and 47 were injured. A total of 147 prison officers were also injured.

Strangeways Prison was opened in 1868 next to the old Manchester Assize Courts, now demolished. It was designed by Alfred Waterhouse, who also the architect for Manchester Town Hall and the Natural History Museum in London.

Strangeways originally cost £172,000 to build and had a capacity of 1,000 inmates. The walls were 16 feet thick in parts. The 234 feet ventilation tower remains a local landmark.

The prison took its name from Strangeways Park and Gardens, on which it was built. The word Strangeways is derived from the Anglo-Saxon ‘Strang’ and ‘gewaesc’ meaning strong overflow of stream water.