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Adidas's Manchester Shades, Australasia's Spanner In The Works

Sleuth WK 36 making absurd sense for discerning readers

Written by . Published on September 6th 2013.

Adidas's Manchester Shades, Australasia's Spanner In The Works

SleuthSleuthSleuth is a sideways glance at the city every week, it's the truth, but Sleuth's truth. He's several people all at once. We give £25 for every story/rumour and piece of absurdity you find for us to publish. Sleuth sometimes even gets serious. We ask for the money back if any legal action follows. Follow Sleuth on twitter @mcrsleuth

Adidas Manchester Sunglasses

Sports brand Adidas launched their Manchester sunglasses with an end of summer party on the Great John Street Hotel's rooftop playground this week - see main picture above. The glasses, priced at £120, have been designed with Manchester musicians in mind according to Adidas, whose UK head quarters are in Stockport. Sleuth could definitely imagine Shaun Ryder in these. He's known to be partial to an Adidas trefoil and with these he can have one right between the eyes. Otherwise, Sleuth doesn't really understand why they are so 'Manchester'. Still since they'll be sold over the world it all increases the city brand. 

Spanner In Australasia’s Work

Spanner On The ToolsSpanner On The ToolsDave Spanner, the-Aussie-that-says-it-as-it-is, is now heading up the Australasia kitchen as Executive Development Chef. This is good news. Australasia is an excellent restaurant and with Dave’s experience of Pacific rim cuisine it can only get better.

He’s a proper quote machine as well.

This is him during the interview with David Blake on Confidential about his attitude to team work: ‘I can't stand working with fucking idiots, people who are dirty, or lazy. I can’t stand laziness or unprofessionalism’. 

This is Dave on meat: ‘I like working with lesser cuts of meat that really show the ability of the chef. Any fucking idiot can cook a fillet steak. So give me a pig’s head, pig’s ears, trotters, tongue, the lot.’ 

On Jerusalem artichokes: ‘They cause the most amazing flatulence. They’re not even from the artichoke family so fuck knows why they call them Jerusalem artichokes.’ 

On would-be restaurant owners: ‘I just see so many people come into this industry with a shit load of cash and think that it’s going to be a money spinner. But they’ve got no fucking idea what they’re doing. They get lead down the wrong path by bad management. There’s a lot of vagabonds in this industry.’ 

Confidential loves Spanner. A proper character. A proper chef.   

Livebait: and the skill of Spanner


The skill of Spanner shown off in his former stint revolutionising Livebait's food

Sleuth’s Street Furniture Of The Week

Sleuth loves the direction Manchester City Council is going with its street furniture: more comfort and flexibility.

New street furniture

New street furniture

Sleuth Best Quote About Manchester Of The Week

'Do not judge these industrial towns by their faces: they are the most alive places in England; they are more interesting than the little dead country towns which we so like to look at: think of Manchester and Birmingham with their concerts, theatres, parks, art galleries, cathedrals. Manchester in one of its crimson smoky sunsets is a sight never to be forgotten for beauty. To someone who likes people as well as buildings, the industrial towns are the hope and life of England.'

So where is the quote from? It's from John Betjeman (later to be Poet Laureate) and was written in 1943 in the Britain in Pictures series of books published by Collins. The books were intended as morale boosters in times of war, underlining what the country was fighting for. Sleuth finds the quote moving.

One of the Britain in Pictures books with the Manchester quote

One of the Britain in Pictures books with the Manchester quote

Sunset with footballers looking into the city centre, CIS Tower in the right distance

Sunset with footballers - The CIS Tower in the distance to the right

Sleuth's Unlikeliest Trio Of The Week

Sleuth was at the event marking ten years since the BBC's Restoration programme granted £3.4m to Victoria Baths on Hathersage Road. Manchester Central MP Lucy Powell unveiled a stained glass window and there were other performances and tributes too. One was from the fabulous synchronised swimming team Aquabatix. Sleuth was due to announce these ladies to the assembled guests before they jumped in the water.

During rehearsals he was told that they'd swum for Disney, David Walliams and ex-President Gorbachev of Russia, the man who oversaw the dismantling of Communism. "Wow,"said Sleuth, "what a trio. Gorbachev, Mickey Mouse and unfunny Walliams in the same room. How weird, would have loved to have seen that." "Er," came the response, "we swam for them at different times, not all together." "Oh, right," said Sleuth, disappointed.

Sleuth's Weirdest Guidebook Entry Ever

So Sleuth's been looking through the newish Where to go: Manchester 'the essential insider's guide to city centre Manchester' - £4.95. It's fine enough as a snapshot of the city. But the Useful Info page has got Sleuth confused. Manchester and Salford Tourist Information Centres, yep fine, Visit Manchester, yep fine, Creative Tourist, the guide's producers, bit cheeky since they don't include Manchester Confidential's details and we are very useful to visitors. But Boots, McDonalds, Ryman? What? Eh? In Useful Info? How? A Big Mac, the O2 Apollo listings please and a tour around the Town Hall?

Try McDonalds for tourist info

Try McDonalds for tourist info

Sleuth's Beautiful Thing Of The Week

Every seven days or so Sleuth is stopped in the street and asked by policemen, concierges, spanners, wrenches, crowbars, chairs, President Gorbachev, David Walliams, poet laureates and all the synchronised swimming teams of the UK: "We have a perverse desire to see the most beautiful enamelled lily on a building in Manchester. Can you help satisfy this yearning?"

"Why yes," says Sleuth. "There is just such a beautiful lily in the entrance hall of Victoria Baths in Chorlton-on-Medlock from 1906."

And to prove this he showed the policemen, concierges, spanners, wrenches, crowbars, chairs, President Gorbachev, David Walliams, poet laureates and all the synchronised swimming teams of the UK, this picture.

"And if we want to see any others?" they asked Sleuth.

"I'd check out Boots, McDonalds or Ryman. They're full of useful info," replied the man in the hat for whom this page is named.

The most beautiful lily

The most beautiful lily

Those Aquabatixs girls in actionThose Aquabatix girls in action

Brooding city sunset from the north east

Brooding city sunset from the north east

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15 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

AnonymousSeptember 6th 2013.

Wonder who'll be the first outsider to suggest that Manchester sunglasses should just have plain glass.

TimetoshineSeptember 6th 2013.

Manchester sunglasses should just have plain glass

TimetoshineSeptember 6th 2013.

Oh shoot you said outsider !

TimetoshineSeptember 6th 2013.

But seriously if you were to spend £120 on sunglasses in the aviator style you'd just get Ray-Bans right?

Penny CloustonSeptember 6th 2013.

What a shame the Victoria Baths event wasn't at the weekend or at least I assume it wasn't at the weekend. I would have loved to have seen Aquabatix in action in person.

AnonymousSeptember 6th 2013.

Betjemen was a genius. The greatest poet since Shakespeare. A proper Cornishman whose most famous line was 'come friendly bombs and fall on Slough'....more please.

AnonymousSeptember 6th 2013.

Surely Adidas launched ITS Manchester sunglasses and why couldn't David Spanner simply HEAD the Australasia's kitchen. I fear Sleuth -who, normally heads UP a healthy passion for tradition - is developing UP a very unhealthy attitude to English.

4 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousSeptember 8th 2013.

Pedantic knob! to all you of a similar ilk, the majority of us are now bored with your pedantry - If you don't like Man Con/Schofield/sleuth/the way the reviews are written/the style of journalism/gordo/people like me who are bored of you, then just knob off and read the Guardian so you can complain about their spelling mistakes........

Calum McGSeptember 9th 2013.

Erm... what's wrong with proper grammar?

AnonymousSeptember 9th 2013.

You could make a carear out of spotting mistakes in the guardian, unless of course your a sub editor.

AnonymousSeptember 9th 2013.

I like your deliberate errors.

AnonymousSeptember 10th 2013.

Well, I'm heading off now. Byes

AnonymousSeptember 11th 2013.

Byes. It doesn't matter if its pedantic or whatever word you chose to use - whether in Man Con by Sleuth or Schofield or in the Guardian - the fact is it really should still be correct. So I'll carry on reading whatever I feel and not bother knobbing off, but hey, thanks anyway for your charming suggestion.

DrakeSeptember 14th 2013.

that guide possibly didn't include ManCon because the site's down at least half of the time (oh, and Boots, perhaps included because of the walk-in Gp centre, you never visited a foreign city and needed to see a doctor Jon?)

1 Response: Reply To This...
Mrs BlinksSeptember 17th 2013.

Drake, feathers ruffled there dear? When we received our copies, the manager wanted to throw them in the Binnsie...

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