An ‘Urban Narnia’ With Mulled Japanese Sake And A Forest Of Fairy Lights Has Opened In Manchester

Laura O'Neill Laura O'Neill

An ‘Urban Narnia’ With Mulled Japanese Sake And A Forest Of Fairy Lights Has Opened In Manchester

Get ready for the most extraordinary of Christmas experiences.

Hatch in Manchester’s Oxford Road has been transformed into a winter wonderland with urban attitude for Christmas. A place where the surreal will meet the sublime, Christmas cheer will meet nano-brewed beer and the darkest of spaces will be given the brightest of touches. Get ready for Urban Narnia.

Photo: Hatchmcr

The food, drink and retail concept will stage a bespoke Christmas pop-up experience that will see Hatch transformed into an urban winter escape, complete with festive trees, twinkling Christmas lights, heaters, blankets and a programme of exciting events and entertainment.

Independent food, drink and retail brands will be popping up in shipping containers including Cottonopolis, who will be bringing a special yuletide version of their street food brand ‘Japanese Junk’ to the festival. They’ll be serving up a range of Christmas drinks with an Asian-inspired twist including a hot, mulled, spiced plum Sake, while their Hot Toddy and Hot Buttered Rum will provide more traditional festive cockle warmers. Japanese Junk’s famous Bao Buns will also make for fabulous festive feasting and their Pork Belly Bao, Katsu Chicken Burgers, Wagyu Kuro Burger will also be on the menu. Plus there’ll be wine, beers and G&Ts served with a range of homemade festive cordials.

Photo: cottonopolis_manchester

While Electrik, the gang that successfully brought Yadda Yadda to Hatch, will be transforming a double stacked shipping container into an all-new Urban Narnia Bar, but the details of this festive drinks extravaganza are being kept under wraps until the big opening night event on November 15.

Retail brands will be bringing something extra special to Urban Narnia including pop-pup partners Betty and Butch, the bespoke boutique for pooches and purveyors of everything your doggie could dream of. They’ll also be hosting their famous Santa Paws on site –where dog lovers will be able to bring their hounds for a picture with Santa Paws.

Photo: bettyandbutch

And a magical urban Christmas venue wouldn’t be complete without Christmas trees, not just to admire but to buy too, so make way for the Urban Narnia Christmas Tree Shop. It will be the city’s new one-stop festive horticultural stop, hosting mini-masterclasses from Christmas tree decorating to wreath making workshops, as well as selling festive fir trees to complete your Christmas at home.

The addition of a new stage at Urban Narnia will mean even more scope for fabulous performances, and extra seating and blankets will create plenty of perfectly cosy festive hang out space. An immersive and diverse programme of events will take place throughout Urban Narnia and the site will be brought to life with music, performances, parties (for kids and grown-ups alike) and a whole family of characters to meet including Mr Tumnus and the Fabulous Fauns.


It will all kick off at 6pm on November 15 with DJ sets from Danielle Moore (Crazy P) and Jenna & The G’s, alongside an extraordinary AV performance by The Ice Queen and other Urban Narnia personalities. Resident Hatch vinyl selectors Stutter & Twitch will then take the festive reins  November 16 and 17 to provide an eclectic selection of music from jazz to swing.

Photo: Hatchmcr

On November 21 Izzie Walsh will curate the last of her 2018 open mic nights, bringing 10 new acts to the Hatch stage. And on December 6, Urban Narnia will host Urban Lights – a night of ‘light graffiti’ and live DJs, including a live graffiti art project set to the soundtrack of live DJ sets from Manchester legends James Holroyd (Begin) and Krysko (The Warehouse Project).

On December 8th the Play House Project is taking over Hatch for a festive Kids Rave featuring Bad Santa and The Naughty Elves! Expect festive fun and merry mischief for all the family including Christmas crafts, face painting and a very special DJ set by L’il Fee (The Whip).

And on December 20 the street food traders and performers will come together for a magical finale at the Mince Pie and Mulled Wine Mingle. It all makes for a fantastically cool yule at Hatch.

Photo: Hatchmcr

Urban Narnia is open now until December 20. Opening times vary – please visit the Hatch website for details.

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