The Cliff Conservation Area is situated to the west of Great Clowes Street and to the north of Great Cheetham Street West, lying on high ground that overlooks the River Irwell and the former Manchester Race Course at Castle Irwell.
In the mid-19th century the majority of residents at the Cliff were members of the professional classes but a number of merchants also resided there. The Cliff was one of the earliest residential suburbs for “commuters” into Manchester and Salford.
In Engels classic work "The condition of the working class in England in 1844" he describes how the "breezy heights of Broughton" were populated by the uppper bourgeoisie who lived in "fine comfortable homes" where they enjoyed the "wholesome country air."
As the 19th century progressed the character of the area change, due partly to improvements in the transport system which enabled people to live further away from the commercial centre and allowed clerical and similar workers to enter the area of Great Clowes Street and Lower Broughton Road.
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