The Trafford Centre

Trafford Park

One of the largest shopping malls in England, built as a palace


image of the-trafford-centre

Get there

Public Transport: two tram‐stops. Private transport: if you want to visit something in particular, decide where to park, or you may need to walk 30 mins to get there.


For a year, the Trafford Centre was the largest shopping precinct in England. Now the second or third largest. I walked the main curve, then the Palazzo (was Barton Square), and measured 1.5 miles, the size of a town. Inside, The Trafford Centre has areas made up to be ships, Chinese, etc. It has attractions—Laser Quest, Seaworld, Legoland and, in the south carpark, a permanent ropewalk …too many to list. The chairman of the company who built the centre wanted it to not sink into the dingy, to be a palace, so the centre was designed with arcade spaces, marble floors, fountains, Greek‐style statues, domes and …if you’re interested, go walk. The owning company went bust in 2020 but, credit due, thirty years later the centre looks good. A European take on San Diego’s Horton Plaza, what the Trafford Centre signifies… perhaps you don’t care. I sometimes need a place with normality, a food court, a toilet strategy, and shelter. Never listed as a tourist destination, yet that’s what it is. Only downside is the bus‐station, which looks good but in winter can be cold and damp with not enough seating.