On the 6th August 1978 the conversion of Smithfield Fish Market into a Craft Village was given the go ahead. According to an article from the Manchester Evening News the following day it would provide a visitor attraction and help preserve many traditional crafts. Visitors would be able to wander through building watching the craftspeople at work and buy goods directly from them.
By August interest had been received from 30 or so craftspeople including furniture makers, potters, glass blowers, silversmiths. goldsmiths, and other skilled crafts people in jewellery, weaving and dressmaking. Jack Hadwen, Director of the Industrial Development Unit, added that it would have “Tremendous public appeal and would be the biggest of its kind in the country”.
Manchester City Council renovated the market and the ‘Manchester Craft Village’ was opened in 1982.