Madchester as a signifier triggers instant recognition worldwide with anyone interested in youth culture. When the scene's musical figureheads - The Stone Roses – reformed in 2012, all 150,000 tickets for their initial two homecoming dates sold out in a record 14 minutes. The other leading Madchester bands, Happy Mondays, and New Order, continue to tour and draw plaudits, their music still relevant, themselves and the era the subject of books, documentaries, feature films and endless articles.


The scene's pivotal club, The Hacienda, is widely recognized as one of the greatest ever and the city's infamous independent record label Factory - at the hub of Madchester - is revered as an industry pioneer. In broader terms: although associated with hedonism, Madchester (unlike the nihilism of punk or grunge) was a huge positive for the whole of Manchester, kick-starting a bright reimagining of the city's image and waves of regeneration. In terms of cultural heritage, it is to the city what The Beatles are to Liverpool.

Musically the term Madchester has broadened now and for the fanbase encapsulates vast swathes of popular guitar music from the Arctic Monkeys and Oasis, to Kasabian, The Killers and Coldplay. The scene's homegrown electronic music pioneers such as 808 State and A Guy Called Gerald see Madchester gaining further recognition as a precursor to today's huge rave culture worldwide.

The original clothes that defined Madchester - not least Gio Goi are exhibited now in the V&A museum of art & design and developed into the 'lad style' popularized by Liam Gallagher. The look has also crossed over into the worlds of hip-hop and skateboarding.

Uniquely amongst youth cultures, Madchester, also came to be associated with sport, namely the city's two leading football teams. Manchester United continue to walk out at home games to the Stone Roses song, This is the One.