Manchester

Back in Manchester

Terrible news that this week we lost one of my favourite DJs, Eric Morillo. Saw this guy DJ in so many places over the years :(

Got back at the weekend and of course it was the bank holiday. Went to Freight Island for the HomoElectric afternoon on the Monday night. Normally these are quite hectic parties but now COVID friendly.

Can’t wait to start my new role at MuscleFood, there is going to be an amazing team of people and looking forward to meeting them all.

Manchester

One year in Manchester

I have now completed a full year here in Manchester, I moved up here in September 2018 straight after my step brothers 30th back in Suffolk. I look back now thinking, how daughting it was to move somewhere where you don't know or know anyone that lives there. And to shift my work pattern to working from home with my previous job without even really testing it, looks completely mad to me now. But for some reason the only thing I had in the back of my mind was that, it was new, it was a challenge and that I would open up opportunity for me, which undoubtedly it has. I want to write this post mainly about the things I have discovered in the city, but also about the transition between living in a small town to a bustling city with the aim of helping anyone else wanting to make the jump. Lets start with why I chose Manchester Why did I choose Manchester? Many people have asked me why I chose Manchester. I think the best and most honest awsner is that I enjoyed my time up here for a few events in 2018 but also I liked not knowing somewhere. I just saw it as a city that had some incredible industries into the digital sector plus I has Media City right next door in Salford.
Manchester

Summer in Manchester

Having lived in the city of Manchester for the past 9 months I have just about covered all the seasons of the city. Looking back to the winter, I was pretty settled in my new job and still exploring the different areas. I feel now, having the knowledge of Manchester to the level I do now that I am certainly better at knowing where to go, the quickest routes and you know what… people ask me for directions and I even know where to point them. Summers here!!

[caption id="attachment_8419" align="aligncenter" width="506"] Chilling in Cathedral Gardens[/caption]

I was just thinking the other day how much I have enjoyed the city since I have been living here. There are so many lovely places, restaurants, bars, and places to chill out. What has made it even better is the fact that people are so helpful and in great spirit. One of my favourite places in the sun is down at Castlefield, one of the best places in the sun and becoming increasingly surrounded by the high rise apartments going up at the south of the city. People seem to flock here, with it being right along the canals it makes it a great place to go for a drink or chill out, its a complete sun trap.

[caption id="attachment_8421" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Castlefield in the sun[/caption] [caption id="attachment_8418" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Celebrating my 31st[/caption]

I have been socialising with my work colleagues on some of our social nights. We went to Deansgate for a night at Roxy’s ballroom, exactly like the name, its a room full of ball games,  followed by a visit to Revolution de Cuba, an underground bar and club quite close to the Albert Hall. Deansgate is a big street right in the heart of the city that links the northern part of the centre to the southern part, right up against the Hilton Hotel. It's pretty closely nestled to Spinningfields, another great spot in the sun. There is a place called Oast House, pretty much a small pub smack bang in the middle of the cities business district. There is often a band on or a solo singer, they also have an outside BBQ too.

[caption id="attachment_8420" align="aligncenter" width="675"] Kylie is arriving soon[/caption]

Coming up soon is Manchester’s International’s Festival, which I think the logo looks like MILF haha, and also the food festival. This will be taking place in the Albert Square, pretty close to where I work. There are loads of events on their website and all of them are free to attend. There are even late night DJ sets at the weekends including a Homoelectric, which I’m yet to experience.

Events Manchester

Store Street WHP

In the depths of the south-east of the city is a unique venue. On store street right underneath the Piccadilly train station is a used car park. During the day throughout the week, this space is used to park all the cars of visitors and office workers but at night between October and December, it's turned into a Manchester superclub. 2018 is the last year of this venue as its now destined for development. The Warehouse Project is a collection of venues across the city as well as running Parklife in the Summer, that host some of the most famous DJ's and Artists. Last Saturday (15th December) I visited the store street venue to see one of my favourite DJ's, Honey Dijon. After gaining a ticket by one of my good friends from London, I walked across to Piccadilly from the flat. The best thing about this place is the location, its hidden away and if you didn't know about it I'd guess that you would miss it. The security was incredibly tight (nice to know) and even the insides of my wallet were checked. Draped in front of the doorways, long bits of plastic as if you were walking into a big refrigerator. When I arrived around 8 pm the sound system wasn't at the highest level and the venue was quite full mainly of people grabbing a drink from one of the many bars. The whole venue is a maze of bricked archways, air vents and air ducts. The exposed pipework and red lighting really make it feel like a big warehouse, I guess living up to its name. Hung from the ceiling, some of the biggest d&b speakers along with blinders, moving heads and Funktion One delays. On first when I got there was Krystal Klear, with a similar sound to Eric Prydz. Very much a modern DJ and has had a recent hit 'Neutron Dance'. He really brought the energy to the early crowd. [caption id="attachment_8125" align="aligncenter" width="400"] KRYSTAL KLEAR[/caption] I was waiting for Honey Dijon. From the US, Honey is well known for chucking soul and techno together.  I saw here in Ibiza at DC-10 you can see my post on Ibiza here in July. I had heard about her from a relative and after googling I saw her for the first time on the white isle. I had to see her again, and the Warehouse Project was possibly the best place to see her. Honey blended Jay-Z, Beyonce, Stevie Wonder and Micheal Jackson together and the techno was my kind of techno, really techy and full of bass. What she manages to do is keep a crowd engaged with the samples and that's what I think makes her sets unique. [caption id="attachment_8124" align="aligncenter" width="400"] HONEY DIJON[/caption] It's a real shame that the venue will be closing but I guess that's just part of moving on. The Warehouse Project has well overstayed their time at Store Street for several years and I guess they will find a new venue for next year. Fortunately, I will be back at Store Street on the 29th December for Elrow for one last time.
Lifestyle Manchester

The move to Manchester – Part 2

Following on from Part One, I have finally moved into the city centre. One thing I have realised is how much I like a routine. So once moving from one area to another, I guess the challenge was to see how quickly I can generate my new routine. Its been so important for me to spend the time to find somewhere to live, a place that I enjoy in an area that I like. I think I've got it pretty spot on. To walk into the city centre is about 5 minutes, walking to the gym takes 10 minutes and then the Northern Quarter is just around the corner from the flat. Socialising has been at the front of my agenda. I have participated in a Monday night pub quiz, nooo not Rob DJ's Monday Night pub quiz but Mr Tom's. I feel the only advice I have learnt from this is to study the Radio 2 playlist and also when playing the higher or lower game is to think the opposite (I keep losing). Who said it keeps raining in Manchester... to be honest, I thought it would be a lot worse. There have been the best sunsets here, I have managed to capture a few from the terrace of the flat. [caption id="attachment_8077" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Sunset view from the flat[/caption] I have never been so used to having everything right on the doorstep. I sound like a sheltered kinda person when I say that but I'm used to going places all the time, I love visiting a city or just going on a road trip. I'm just used to having to travel to get to the nearest shopping centre, or getting a taxi home but its literally right on the doorstep. Just getting ready for a night out, realising that I need a new shirt to pop down to River Island has never been an option. I'm sure doing this all the time wouldn't work in my favour haha. I have been forcing myself down different streets of the city, each time trying to go somewhere different, realising that some of the streets I wouldn't walk down alone at night. I read in the news today that there are approximately 320,000 homeless in the UK, some of which are here in the city. It's the only major thing I have realised I have strong thoughts about. [caption id="attachment_8080" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Christmas Markets in the Albert Square[/caption] [caption id="attachment_8076" align="aligncenter" width="900"] The markets in Exchange Square[/caption] I have moved into the Centre when the Christmas Markets have been built around the city. According to some newspaper articles, its the most Instagrammed Christmas Market. The majority of the stalls appear to be in the Albert Hall Square and Christmas markets go, I have really felt they have a lot to offer. They attract thousands of people every day from all around the city and further afield. I've heard that they are particularly busy at the weekends. I have been to a couple of new restaurants including Yard & Coop, an independent version of Nando's (But not Nando's) and also an incredible place called V Rev, a vegan restaurant that serves really tasty fast food. Fortunately this week, I have had some holiday to use from work so it's given me some time to really explore the city. I have been to more corners of the city and my friends James and Freya have been up. I took them to Home Sweet Home for brunch and then a trip up 20 Stories for views of the city from above. Yesterday I visited the Science and Industry Museum, I learnt all about the city hydraulic industry. Something that I never knew was so big in cities, they used to harness the power of hydraulics before the electrical revolution. Selling hydraulic power as the power of the future and the fact that it wouldn't cause fires and had only one moving part.  Even the Albert Hall clock is still powered by Hydraulics... Ok, I could talk for ages on this. I have booked to go to the Warehouse Project on Store Street in December, I was itching to go after the incredible Elrow party I went to in the summer. Well, it's coming to Manchester and I wanted to see the Store Street venue before it is moved next year. I am more than likely to write up about this event so stay tuned.
Lifestyle Manchester

The move to Manchester – Part 1

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]With the hunger for more opportunity and a want for a bit of city life, I finally moved to the powerhouse of the North. After planning this big move over the past few months, finally, I got up here. I'm so incredibly lucky with the things I have in life and having to sacrifice some of the amazing things I have wasn't an easy decision. I feel that its just come to the point in my life to see something new, see something that could inspire me or edge me to achieve my goals even more. Without my family and my friends, I wouldn't have the courage to be here. So on 30th September, I drove up after my brother's 30th party back in Suffolk. I have been staying in an Airbnb that I stayed at on the August Bank Holiday weekend with the most helpful host Jacqualene. She's lovely, a true Irish lady and she has helped me get my bearings in Didsbury, one of South Manchester's Villages. There seems to be a load of "young folk" that live in Didsbury, full of restaurants and bars, it's a village that is spread across the South. I have been living just on the outskirts of the main street. Supermarkets, pubs, and cafes are all within an arms reach of where I have been staying. [caption id="attachment_8060" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Dog & Partridge - a Greene King pub right in the centre of Didsbury[/caption] To get into the city there are many options, driving or by bus or tram. The tram stop comes straight into the village and they are every 10-15 mins.  I have now walked just about everywhere in the City. I had to find a flat for me eventually and visiting different places for viewings has been a great way to know where to head. I feel that I now have the ability to get myself to a certain area in the city without the need for help from maps on my phone. I particularly like Spinningfields, Manchester's business district and also Castlefield which is the quieter side of the city - this was home the industrial side which is now a great area for a walk around the canals, mostly this area is converted to flats, office spaces and the new home to Hits Radio. [caption id="attachment_8064" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Castlefield - the quieter side of the city[/caption]   [caption id="attachment_8063" align="aligncenter" width="900"] The Town Hall[/caption] Fortunately, with my job, I am able to work remotely and I have been to some cafes during the day to work. There are many up in the Northern Quarter and Ancoats, like the one called Takk. [caption id="attachment_8061" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Takk - 3 scrambled eggs[/caption] There are also a few bars such as TROF and one of my favourite so far is Cane & Grain, a very indie bar with their main famous food to be ribs. I haven't tried them yet. I have also been trying my hardest to keep the fitness routine going, as part of Pure Gym I have been going to Urban Exchange a lot. This is right in Ancoats and I haven't decided yet whether this will be my home gym. Spinningfields does have another gym that I'm interested in too. [caption id="attachment_8065" align="aligncenter" width="900"] Close to my flat[/caption] So I move from Disdbury in November, to the city centre to live with a couple of guys in between the Green and Northern Quarter. I will post again once I have managed the move. It will give me a good chance to properly integrate into the city. Part 2 coming soon![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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