We love Manchester.
It seems an obvious statement, but it bears repeating. There’s nowhere quite like our city; home to compelling culture, counterculture, a booming business community, elite sport, and – crucially – one of the most diverse, interesting, fastest-growing hospitality economies in the UK.
We’re lucky enough to have Scandi-influenced Michelin-starred restaurants cheek-by-jowl with cosy, casual spots where you can find some of the best pizza in Europe. We have the refined glamour of Spinningfields, all sleek towers and show-stopping fit-outs, a stone’s throw away from the rough-around-the-edges raucousness of the Northern Quarter.
In a nutshell, we have it all. Locals and tourists alike can soak up the heady hedonism of Menagerie on a Saturday and recover with a roast by a roaring fire in the Peak District on a Sunday. Serious foodies can make the pilgrimage to Stockport to have their socks blown off by Sam Buckley at Where The Light Gets In. Bottomless brunches abound in the city centre, catering to gaggles of girls in towering heels (and never coats).
It’s one part of what makes this city so truly magnetic. And now, we need your help preserving it.
Covid-19 has swept the globe, and has thrown things into uncertainty. The Prime Minister’s announcement on 16 March encouraging people to stay away from social spaces has compounded what was already a precarious situation.
It’s likely that our beloved bars and restaurants, which have provided us with so many memories over the years, will struggle through this period. That’s why we’re launching #PayItForward, in partnership with Greater Manchester’s Night Time Economy Adviser, Sacha Lord.
We’re calling on anyone who has ever had a bloody brilliant night out, day out or meal out at any of our venues across the region to buy discounted gift vouchers now, to ensure that cash keeps coming into the tills of our hospitality operators and livelihoods are protected. These can then be redeemed when restaurants and bars are able to throw their doors open once again, and when social distancing measures are lifted.
£1 from each discounted voucher purchased will go to Hospitality Action, the charity which supports the mental health of staff across the full spectrum of the hospitality industry. In a time when many of them will feel anxious about their job security and their financial situations, the work that this organisation does is more vital than ever.
We’re confident that Mancunians born, bred and adopted will show some of that indomitable spirit we’re known for, and support one another through adversity – as we’ve done so many times before.
After all, Manchester thinks a table is for dancing on, not hiding under. Don’t believe us? Just pop into Albert’s Schloss any given night of the week…
Click here if you're a restaurant that would like to get involved.