Welcome to Then and Now, where each week we compare images of Manchester streets, landmarks and buildings from bygone days with how they look today.

This week our main image shows Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, alighting from the Royal Train at Manchester Piccadilly station. The date is February 8th 1973.

There is a flurry of activity on the platform as the Lord Mayor of Manchester Alderman Edward Grant and civic dignitaries welcome their royal visitor.

It’s quite a contrast to current scenes at the usually bustling station as only essential journeys are being made due to the coronavirus lockdown.

Prince Philip was in Manchester to visit the University of Salford, where he was Chancellor from 1967 to 1991.

The Royal College of Advanced Technology at Salford became a university in February 1967 when Queen Elizabeth presented the institution with its Royal Charter.

Royal Train, Manchester - Then Piccadilly, Manchester - Now

Apparently Prince Philip got a noisy reception when he arrived at the university in 1973 as anti-apartheid demonstrators were gathered outside the gates.

As well as visiting the university, the prince toured the newly opened Eccles College where he chatted to staff and students.

Eccles College provided further education for students aged 16 and over from 1973 until it became part of Salford City College in January 2009. It continues as the Eccles Centre of Salford City College.

Prince Philip made a number of visits to the university in his role as Chancellor. He opened the library in 1971 and toured the chemical engineering department and Newton Building in 1976.

*Many more images from Then and Now are featured in The Changing Face of Manchester published to mark the 150th anniversary of the M.E.N.

It’s on sale at £14.99 including postage and packing. Order your copy online at inostalgia.co.uk or ring the order hotline on 01928 503777.