Credit: Manchester Libraries, Information and Archives

Didsbury Civic Society to renovate Spanns ‘ghost wall’ at Costa Coffee in the village

  • Money raised to renovate the Spanns advertisement wall in Didsbury
  • Great effort given to historical accuracy with the paints and calligraphy
  • Didsbury Civic Society appeals for new members

Plans are under way to renovate a historic ‘ghost’ advertisement on a prominent wall in Didsbury.

Didsbury Civic Society plans to renovate Spanns’ ghost wall advertisement, which is on the side of the building now home to Costa coffee.  

Ghost advertisements are the faded remnants of old advertisements seen on walls on the side of buildings up and down the country.

Remains of a 1924 wall advertisement for Spanns removals in Didsbury
What remains of Spanns advertisement on the wall in Didsbury

Spanns was a removal and interior design company, specialising in linoleum and bedding.  Work is currently underway by the Civic Society to investigate Spann’s in order to find out more about the history of the Didsbury company so as to better understand the signs heritage.  

The sign originally read: TEL, 234 Didsbury, Spanns, Blinds, Removing, Carpet Linoleum and Bedding warehouse” but now only part of it remains readable.  

Didsbury Civic Society has obtained a photo of the ghost advert from 1924 from Manchester archives. The landlord of the building occupied by Costa has given his support to the project saying he “would be delighted to assist and something we had thoughts about when we bought it”.  NQ is currently 

The council has confirmed that planning permission is not required. 

Didsbury Civic Society has consulted Shane Johnstone, an artist with 30 years sign-writing experience, about restoration of the advert. He is currently in the process of creating a watercolour of the intended design and sourcing the right paints for the job. 

Mike Corlett, of Didsbury Civic Society, said members were moving ahead with the project and promised that when finished the advert “will be beautiful”.

Manchester Archives image of Spanns advertisement wall in Didsbury 1924
Credit:  Manchester Libraries, Information and Archives

Didsbury Civic Society is in the process of fundraising for a renovation of the war memorial in the village as part of its “vision for Didsbury” plan launched last year. 

Notice Board by the war memorial for Didsbury Civic Society
Didsbury Civic Society is looking for new members

The society is currently on a drive to recruit more members. Anyone who wished to join should visit their website.