Manchester was back to its boozy antics last week.
And rightfully so. We’re the city that thinks tables are dancing on, after all. Restaurants such as Rudy’s, Ramona and El Gato Negro have seen high demand for bookings since announcing the opening of their outdoor terraces, with little space at bars left across popular areas such as the Northern Quarter and Spinningfields over the sunny weekend.
It’s a part of our culture we’re most grateful to have back, and the addition of the Mediterranian-style outdoor terraces has brought new life to a temporarily abandoned city centre, desperate for the lifeblood of visitors running through its veins again.
With restrictions on meeting friends now loosened to the Rule of Six, Manchester saw huge reunions between friends who haven’t seen each other since October due to the ongoing restrictions in the region, with the beer gardens providing the backdrop for date nights, mate nights and family reunions.
Market Street and the Arndale have been no exception, either, with many taking advantage of the return of non-essential retail and bagging a few bargains as stores return with post-lockdown sales to boost their revenue. Queues were spotted outside TK Maxx, Uniqlo, Primark and Zara, with demand keeping up throughout the week and more and more Mancs found the opportunity to head out into town again.
Other areas of Manchester attracted visitors for different reasons, however, with the Corn Exchange and New Islington Marina, in particular, becoming the preferred locations for an al-fresco catch up with friends.
Nighttime Economy Advisor Sacha Lord expressed his joy at the return of hospitality last Monday, saying: “Suns out in Greater Manchester. Beer gardens and terraces are already full. Smiling, happy customers.
“I can’t wait for my first outing on Saturday. Staying local, Altrincham and supporting independents.”
Welcome back Manchester, we sure as hell missed you.
[Featured image: Oli SCARFF / AFP]