Trip to Manchester

The gang take a trip to Old Trafford...

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In late February, the five of us set off to realise Amy’s biggest goal to visit Old Trafford in Manchester! For almost two years it has been Amy’s goal to see Old Trafford and we were determined to achieve it.

We decided that we were going to go to Manchester for a day, so it took a month of preparation to see how we would manage it. First, we contacted the Manchester United fan club and informed them about our mission to “make a dream come true”. They got back to us very quickly, delighted with our intentions and offered us a deal that we couldn’t resist. The offer was to visit the Manchester United museum and the grounds of the Old Trafford stadium. Next, we had to figure out how we were going to get to Manchester, so we sat down and planned. We set the date for the 26th February 2019, booked the flights for an extremely good price of 33 euros and found a direct Navy metro line to Trafford Bar, which is located only twenty minutes walking distance from Old Trafford. In total we managed to book everything for 56 euros!

Once we booked everything, we only needed to decide our meeting point. We set the meeting point to be in front of Terminal 1 at Dublin airport for 09:00 in the morning. Some of us traveled with the Aircoach bus from Bray, Co Wicklow and some of us came from Dublin city center with the Airlink bus. Once we were all together, we started walking towards the security gates. There were no issues once we reached the security gates as we passed with “flying colors”. We made our way to find the gate to Manchester and once we did, we sat down, chatted and waited for boarding. We couldn’t hide our excitement while waiting for the flight! The sun was shining when we boarded our plane and we knew we were 45 minutes away from reaching Manchester. The whole experience on the plane went well as we enjoyed some refreshments and chatted along the way. When we landed, we found ourselves in a huge airport, but we stood together and managed to find our way to the Metro station, where we purchased our metro tickets for the Navy metro line that would take us straight to Trafford Bar. It was a 40 minute ride on the Metro; thus, we enjoyed the ride due to the beautiful sunny morning Manchester greeted us with.  We got off at Trafford bar and made our way on foot to Old Trafford. It took us 20 minutes to get there and once we did, it was just breathtaking to be standing in front of great Manchester United! Before going into the museum, we went for lunch and some refreshments in the Manchester Red Café. The whole café was in Manchester colors and we saw the jerseys from all the famous Manchester United players.

We got entrance to the Manchester United museum, where we got the opportunity to see and hear about the history and the progression of the Manchester United team. However, we also got to step foot on the grounds of Old Trafford where we were guided by 2 excellent guides and Manchester united fans. They spoke to us about the history of Old Trafford, its fans and told us little secrets that still echo in the walls of old Trafford!

After the whole Manchester united tour had finished, we got our certificates and now we could finally say we did it! We also spent some time in the Manchester United shop search for souvenirs to take home that would always remind us of this day! It was already late in the afternoon when we finished with our tour, so we started walking towards Trafford Bar metro station and we then searched for a restaurant around there, so we could have some dinner before we were on the road again. We found a Chinese restaurant and were delighted as we all enjoy a good meal. We got our energy back from all the noodles and prawns and were ready to set off one more time. After we finished our meal, we said goodbye to our friends in the restaurant and walked to the Trafford Bar metro station where we waited for the metro to come and take us back to Manchester Airport. Everything went smoothly and after a long day we finally set down and over a cup of coffee gathered our thoughts. We felt delighted with ourselves and that we managed to accomplish what we set out to do. We will always remember this trip.

What is there more to say? When on English soil, remember to always carry English change!

Vedrana Horvat is a community support worker in Sunbeam House Services.

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