The Spanns ghost advert at Costa Coffee, Didsbury Centre
Disbury Civic Society has obtained a photo of The Spanns ghost advert clearly showing the Spanns shop as it was in 1924, (Manchester City Archives). Currently a group of members are looking at the history of the Spanns shop and with the telephone numbers showing in the photograph are a clue in identifying when the shop may have started. The landlord of Costa Coffee has given his support to the project of enhancing and preserving the ghost advert as a work of art stating in January 2021 ………would be delighted to assist and something we had thought about when we bought it. Let me know how you wish to take this forward and we can arrange access or any licences needed in due course.
Manchester City council has confirmed that planning permission is not required. Through grant applications DCS is exploring a story board of Spanns shop and also engaging Shane Johnstone a sign writer of 30 years experience is looking to produce an artist`s impression of the advert to support funding applications. The artistic value now is very high. English Folk Art is the next big thing. Though this ghost sign may well be of heritage value it is not protected. DCS acknowledges that the existing or new landlord may come along and cover it over, paint or build upon the existing terrace at Costa Coffee. The French Doors and lights inserted were done so without consideration of what was there in terms of heritage. Yes, there is a great opportunity to enhance what is there! The first wall art in Didsbury is a possibility with the funding.