Lowry had no need to make deliberate expeditions in search of subject matter. His rent collecting took him throughout the poorer districts which surrounded the Manchester city centre. In particular an area on the fringes of Ancoats became a special place. The present view can be located precisely as it was also the subject of a drawing of 1934; it is of the long-demolished Jersey Road Flats in Ancoats.
Lowry both liked and understood these areas, he had no need to travel abroad, journeying from one side of the city to the other gave him all the depth he required for his paintings. One of his first reviewers, Bernard Taylor, commented in 1921, 'His subjects are Manchester and Lancashire street scenes, interpreted with technical means as yet imperfect, but with real imagination. His portrait of Lancashire is more grimly like than a caricature, because it is done with the intimacy of affection. He emphasises violently everything that industrialism has done to make the aspect of Lancashire more forbidding than of most other places. Many of us may comfort ourselves a little with contemplating suburban roads, parks, or gardens in public squares, or with the lights and colours of morning or sunset. Mr Lowry has refused all comfortable delusions. He has kept his vision as fresh as if he had come suddenly into the most forbidding part of Hulme or Ancoats under the gloomiest skies after a holiday in France or Italy' (S. Rohde, L.S. Lowry a biography, Salford, 1999, p. 154).