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New Hotel For Northern Quarter, That Little Man, More Zombie Car Parks

Sleuth Wk 4: king size absurdity with en suite truth, love and purity

Written by . Published on January 16th 2014.

New Hotel For Northern Quarter, That Little Man, More Zombie Car Parks

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

New Hotel For The Northern Quarter

Sleuth learns that planning permission for a new hotel from local brewery Hydes has been approved. This will be located between Union Street, Red Lion Street and Turner Street, opposite Solita restaurant.

There will be fourteen bedrooms, a restaurant, a bar and a secure cycle store for six bikes. Six whole bikes. Big issue that last one now.

The site was used as the set of Cutting It with Sarah Parrish and Amanda Holden, tagged 'Hairdressers at War'. Maybe rather than a saloon bar the new place can have a salon bar thinks Sleuth, with cocktails such as the Blue Rinse for Mabel in the corner and maybe a A Pornstar Blowdry for racier younger types.

Cutting It

Cutting It - the brewery representative is on the left and a complaining resident on the right

There have been fifteen complaints from locals to the plans, mainly revolving around noise, drunkenness, urination, vomiting and all that carry on. Although bizarrely somebody also mentioned a suicide off The Light Building round the corner which Sleuth thought a little off-topic and a little desperate. Bats were mentioned too.

It's pretty showbiz round here. When guests on Red Lion Street open their curtains in the morning they'll also have an unrestricted view of that lovely 1970s beige car park as featured in TV show Life on Mars.  

Aside from all of this Sleuth reckons a cute hotel in the Northern Quarter is a fine idea, add to the area. Good local operator behind it too, all good with Sleuth. The site has been a hotel before anyway. Look on the old maps and it housed The Original Barley Mow pub. History comes full circle and all that. 

Proposed hotel

Proposed hotel

Sleuth's Small Holiness

Sleuth hears a Confidential reader was in a nearby city buying jewellery over Christmas when the flustered Saturday temp shouted across the shop for assistance. "We've run out over here, it's for a christening. Have you got any of those crosses with the little man on them?" Sleuth is a Godless humanist but even he thinks this was going a little far. 

Sleuth And The Beer Festival On Bikes

Sleuth loves the fact that next week's Manchester beer festival (22-25 January) at the National Cycling Centre close to the Etihad won't interfere with business as usual. As Neil Sowerby wrote: 'The track will remain operational throughout with GB Cycling or Team Sky team riding in practice sessions'. Sleuth just hopes none of the Campaign for Real Ale (CAMRA) drinkers at the Festival get too drunk and decide to 'borrow' a track bike to get home. Sleuth isn't worried about the single gear - Manchester is a flat city. But he is worried about the fact there are no brakes on these machines. A large CAMRA member flattened against the front of a bus could cause considerable disruption across the city. And quite a mess.

Barry, Chair Of The We're Not All Round And Hairy Branch Of Camra, Fails To Make His Point Again


Barry, chair of the 'We're Not ALL Round and Hairy' branch of CAMRA, fails to convince again

Sleuth And Owning A Bit Of Manchester History

Sleuth always likes to buy lovely links to his city's story. Thus for £2,640 each he can now invest in original shelving units from the 1930s Manchester Central Library - due to re-open in spring this year. Apparently the shelves are 'antique' and 'adjustable'. Here's the link should you wish to purchase. Sleuth does wonder why the Library doesn't need them anymore. Have they lost some of the books? As a cost-cutting measure are books being now used to prop up desks?

Shelf Life


Shelf Life

United We Park, United We Pay

Sleuth remembers David Blake's story on Confidential about zombie car parks and their blighting of the city centre. As described by Blake these are 'long-term ‘temporary’ car parks, thrown up on the sites of demolished buildings or patches of undeveloped and desolate plots in order to make developers a quick few quid while they decide what to actually do with the space.'

Thus the owners of the site of United Buildings on Oldham Street, firestormed last year, have applied for retrospective planning permission for 42 bays. Retrospective, naughty eh? They've been raking it in for months. Complainants including Friends of the Earth and Parkstarter have asked for the land to be used for green space instead. Or even, Sleuth hears, a pen for flying pigs. However, word on the street would have it that the council are minded to finally take a stand against this particular zombie car park. Sleuth waits in the wings, ready for our final stand against the zombie invasion.

Sleuth and some busts

Every seven days or so Sleuth is stopped in the street by policemen, concierges, Sarah Parrish, Amanda Holden, Mabel, bats, red lions, Barry from CAMRA, that little man on crucifixes and zombie car parks, and asked: "Where can I find the largest array of busts in the city centre?"

"Why," says Sleuth, "that would be at the fantastic Sculpture Hall in the Town Hall. It's got more bust than a Playboy Playmate party at the Playboy Mansion."

And to prove this he showed the policemen, concierges, Sarah Parrish, Amanda Holden, Mabel, bats, red lions, Barry from CAMRA, that little man on crucifixes and zombie car parks this photo and pointed them in the direction of this review.

'To be honest John I'm sick of looking at you now.''To be honest John I'm sick of looking at you now.'

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

Kevin PeelJanuary 16th 2014.

We've had enough of these zombie car parks and in my patch (the city centre) we're doing our best to stop them - or have permission restricted to one year. We've got our fingers crossed on this one, which is over the border in Ancoats.

5 Responses: Reply To This...
DavidJanuary 16th 2014.

Zombie car parks don't blight the city centre your parking wardens and your high parking charges do.Typical socialist ant-business policies that have led to more and more empty shops in the city centre and hence lost employment opportunities.

SamJanuary 16th 2014.

Peel is a very popularist but transparent Trojan Horse for planning agendas as decoy politics. What was his position on #Parkstarter? Being critical. Even the term is hijacked from the Pirate Party that he refuses to work with. As for the rubbish socialist argument, Peel certainly is not one. Elections PR like the 'bin wars' pre 2015.

Calum McGJanuary 17th 2014.

David, how can you claim that the shitty zombie car parks "don't blight the city centre"? Absolute bollocks. The old BBC site is a shambles.

beastleyJanuary 17th 2014.

mr Peel, you and your ilk may have had enough of the zombie carparks but the consumers ( i.e. people who want to be able to get into the city centre and park for a reasonable price) absolutely love them. It means we dont have to pay the ridiculous charges that you levy on innocent shoppers. @Ali Mc G - you`re quite right that the zombie carparks are a " shambles" but what exactly is going to be achieved by banning the use of them as carparks? they are owned by developers who will, if banned from using them as carparks, simply mothball the sites. So they'll still be a shambles but drivers will have to pay the outrageous prices to park on MCC`s parking bays or in the NCP`s. think it through.

Charles CohenJanuary 17th 2014.

God bless zombie car parks. Cheaper than the bus and home in half the time.

James Adamson shared this on Facebook on January 16th 2014.
AnonymousJanuary 16th 2014.

Ooh well done David, managed to get the socialist dig in. Having read your numerous comments on this site, you really do have a lot of time on your hands. You must be underworked an overpaid. David you are a bell-end. Much love xx

3 Responses: Reply To This...
DavidJanuary 16th 2014.

Thanks for your love anonymous.But you really must try harder with your insults,they are pretty poor.

Jonathan SchofieldJanuary 16th 2014.

David it is getting a bit boring your endless 'same point' about Labour. It almost seems like you are a frustrated politician. As I always say I will allow any intelligent commentary on here. Unfortunately when we tried another local MP a voice on Confidential who was not Labour his thoughts were so inarticulate and badly written I had to stop using him. If you can find me one let me know but please stop harping on about your own personal beefs. It's getting tedious.

Peter BrockwellJanuary 19th 2014.

@ED im no yeller feller, but John Leech always seems a well-intentioned, articulate, 'campaigning' - in the good sense - local MP. why dont you ask him for a soundbite?

Jennie LawrensonJanuary 16th 2014.

Sorry Kevin but I love the car park that has appeared on Oldham st - it is reasonably priced so great for tradesmen servicing city residents and businesses (£1 for 1hr etc). It is a nightmare to get tradesmen due to high charges for parking. Also its great for businesses as their customers can afford to come into the city centre and park! Actually what we are all fed up with is the high cost parking charges on the streets and multi story making business in the city struggle. Plus There must be 4 times as many parking wardens than police in the Northern Quarter alone. Perhaps having the Zombie Car parks will encourage price competition...stopping the monopoly and reduce the parking prices being charged by NCP & Council... I hope so! Kevin I think that you need to get in touch with what we really have had enough of...otherwise you will not have a problem with Zombie car parks but a ghost town!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Reader XxxJanuary 16th 2014.

The ghost town is already here but rather than being green, is full of zombie car parks!

AnonymousJanuary 16th 2014.

Again, There are wht 200 on street car parking spaces??> Also 73% of people who use the arndale, come by public transport, think about that...

AnonymousJanuary 16th 2014.

Am I the only one who wishes that the city centre was for people and not a place to keep their cars? Park outside and walk you lazy buggers!

4 Responses: Reply To This...
MaggieJanuary 16th 2014.

Lovely sentiment anonym-arse, so people who are mobility impaired are not allowed in the city then??

AnonymousJanuary 16th 2014.

Maggie - Sure they are, that's why you'd have disabled only bays - and mobility spaces. Also Metro/Metroshuttle

AnonymousJanuary 17th 2014.

What about those of us who live in the city centre but work outside it? I'd love to get rid of my car then I didn't have to pay £100 a month to park it in town but it's not an option.

AlisonJanuary 17th 2014.

What about the safety aspect. I work in manchester and sometimes go out at night too, but getting home on my own can be unpleasant and costly. I feel a lot safer if I am out late being able to park nearby for a reasonable charge, and drive home

Kevin PeelJanuary 16th 2014.

Most of you (apart from Jenny and David - can't please everyone!) will be happy to hear that my colleagues on the planning committee today rejected the application. A win for all those campaigning against these blights on our community.

5 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 16th 2014.

Would have been nice if you had demonstrated some consistency and principle in light of the umpteen other consented zombie car parks dotted around the city. Opportunist much?

Kevin PeelJanuary 17th 2014.

I don't debate Anonymous posters, if you want to make false accusations and challenge my positions then put your name to it and I'll respond.

DelacyJanuary 19th 2014.

I think there is a conflict of interests here. The planners do what the council wants. The council wants revenue from on street parking. Do u really think the developer will offer his land for allotments. Perimeter hoarding is ripe for fly posting and graffiti.

NameJanuary 19th 2014.

Would have been nice if you had demonstrated some consistency and principle in light of the umpteen other consented zombie car parks dotted around the city. Opportunist much?

AnonymousJanuary 20th 2014.

dont you mean blights to the councils income for parking charges? you created the demand cant blame land owners for trying to meet it.

MeJanuary 17th 2014.

The hotel is a great idea, I live in the NQ and walk past this building twice daily. This area can still be a little dodgy, wronguns hangin about, kids smioking weed in the NCP, I think the opening of the hotel will make it much safer. Its not like Solita brings much noise, or MontPelliers on the road paralel to itso why would a hotel? Its nice to see that area being developed.

AnonymousJanuary 17th 2014.

The shelves date from 1910, when there was no Central Library as such. They probably came out of the old Town Hall on King St - a long time ago. Looks like an opportunist listing. Definitely not Central Library. A wee bit of research goes a long way, Sleuth!

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 18th 2014.

Utter tosh anonymous. They're selling two different versions and have the date wrong.

AnonymousJanuary 19th 2014.

Rubbish! Never seen them before in my puff.

John HarrisJanuary 17th 2014.

Zombie car parks are the inevitable consequence of Manchester Labour's war on the motorist.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 18th 2014.

Which war is this? What combat forces are involved. Oh wait there isn't. Jesus.

Rick22January 17th 2014.

Parking £7 an hour in NCP VS £3.50 all day at a zombie car park that's why they are so popular. Zombie car parks are a blight on the city centre but more importantly they are a symptom of the bigger problem of over priced parking. We need shoppers to visit Manchester from the surrounding shires but ripping them if on parking is keeping allot away. Infrastructure makes a city and currently the parking situation is letting Manchester down

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 18th 2014.


DelacyJanuary 19th 2014.

Lots of people don't like public transport, especially for shopping. They simply go elsewhere to Trafford centre or retail parks

Nick NameJanuary 18th 2014.

Good news regarding the hotel. I walk past this building quite a bit and i've always liked the look of it and often wondered why its been empty for so long. It's in a great location. Talking of empty buildings. Does anyone know if there are any plans to do anything with the old Smithfield Market Hall on Swan St? I walk past this building all the time and seeing it get neglected while new things get built all around it is sad to see. It's ripe for redevelopment.

3 Responses: Reply To This...
James SmithJanuary 19th 2014.

It's a lovely building and could be a great asset to the city - so my guess - will be pulled down and replaced with a low rise crap budget hotel.

EditorialJanuary 19th 2014.

Read the story about the hotel James. The plans include retention of the building, fortunately not everything is demolished. As for Mackie May as its called read the story called One Smithfield published last week in our Property section. Thanks.

James SmithJanuary 20th 2014.

I was referring to the Smithfield Market Hall not the hotel. As for the chances of that becoming something as desirable as a market, well, I suppose I can live in hope.

AnonymousJanuary 23rd 2014.

I totally agree with the comments on the hotel .. this is on the street I live on and I wrote a letter of support. The owners held a neighbours consultation evening and listened to our concerns and its nice to see something completley different than just a bar ... Although I hope the Bat stays ..

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