Blown off the Arndale by an IRA bomb in 1996, Luke Cowdrey tells us how the Big E came to be
"It's been languishing in a basement for years," says Luke Cowdrey, one half of the Unabombers DJ collective and co-owner of Volta in Didsbury and Electrik bar in Chorlton.
"My mate Pete Steranko (of Steranko Clothing in West Didsbury) always said we could have it to put in Electrik, but it never happened. Now we're doing the Electrik Box at Hatch it just made sense."
Though this is certainly not the first time a DJ has been so excited about a Big E, Cowdrey's enthusiasm for this particular E is borne of a dark and explosive history.
We wanted to reclaim it for Manchester...
According to Luke (and his mate Pete), this E comes from a large Arndale sign blown off the shopping centre following the IRA's bombing of Manchester in 1996.
"We wanted to reclaim it for Manchester," says Luke, "and now we've opened Electrik Box underneath the Mancunian Way we thought it was a perfect fit."
Electrik Box (beer, wine, arcade games, balcony) is now open at Hatch on Oxford Road.
Watch the video above to hear more about the return of the 'Big E'.