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New MCR 'American Brasserie', MEN Fails Drug Test, New NQ Bar

Sleuth Wk 3: Absurdity, Love, Truth And Stilton Cheese Chocolate

Written by . Published on January 10th 2014.

New MCR 'American Brasserie', MEN Fails Drug Test, New NQ Bar

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

The Worst Story Of The Week

Sleuth couldn't believe the MEN ran this shock, horror 'drugs' story about Cllr Pat Karney, MCC Councillor of Fun. Apparently in Amsterdam when Karney was 19 he had a joint. Hold the front page. Scoop.

Er no.

The information was discovered because Karney had written about it in a column for the MEN regarding the recent legalisation of drugs in Colorado - not investigative journalism's proudest moment.

Sleuth can only assume the MEN thought this was good enough to be a stand-alone article because Karney is a public figure and people might be DISGUSTED by a drugs story. DISGUSTED. In otherwords the whole thing was mischievous and spiteful.  

But then again Sleuth can see the newspaper's point.

...and Amsterdam...and AmsterdamAfter all, nobody at the Manchester Evening News has ever had a joint, drank too much, taken cocaine, done anything they regret. Sleuth can confirm they all live with fluffy dogs and have weekend hobbies of litter picking and taking old people to the shops. Sleuth can also confirm that there is nothing so low, deceitful and hypocritical than newspaper folk trying to be holier-than-thou.

But then again Sleuth supposes Manchester is so quiet there aren't any real stories out there.

The MEN is better than this.

New American Brasserie To Open In The City Centre

Sleuth isn't massively sure what an 'American brasserie' is but the people behind Neighbourhood in Spinningfields are going to open one 'in a mystery location in the city centre in September' - presumably not the Arndale Food Court. Neighbourhood has been a huge success attracting a lively dress-up, big hair crowd who like to see and be seen - probably more of the latter than the former. The press release says that Neighbourhood bosses Guy Hitchen and husband and wife team James and Karina Hitchen are proud to have attracted both Manchester United and Everton football clubs to the restaurant for celebrations. Apparently Everton booked Neighbourhood to say farewell to David Moyes. Sleuth hears United have again booked the venue at the end of the present season - to say farewell to David Moyes. 



Speakeasy Too

The same team of Hitchens are also this year going to be opening 'a secret speakeasy in Spinningfields' at the end of March. Confidential's office is in Quay House in Spinningfields - which is referred to as 'Sleuth's secret speakeasy'. Hey this is our office. Hands off Hitchens. As if two new 'concept' venues aren't enough, also in March, the busy bunch will launch another Southern 11 in the former Brooks Brothers unit in The Avenue in Spinningfields. 

New NQ Bar

There aren't enough bars in the Northern Quarter. Everybody knows this. It's ridiculous there are only four thousand bars on ten streets and only three times more cocktail variations than the whole population of the North West of England. What happened to choice? So it's welcome news that the Liquorice boys, who run the dandy little place on Pall Mall, are to open a bar in the old Paris Wholesale store on Lever Street. Mark Whyte, the charming boss of Liquorice, wants to deliver to the city 'a unique list of drinks and cocktails using fresh fruit, garden herbs, botanicals and premium spirits'. But not marijuana. So Cllr Pat Karney won't be interested. 



Liquorice on Pall Mall, shakers at the ready

The Skeleton In The Cupboard

Confidential correspondent Ruth Allan forwarded Sleuth details of Alan Turing’s former house Copper Folly in Wilmslow which is up for sale for almost £1m. Turing is the famous computer pioneer and the key man behind the breaking of the German Enigma Code in WWII which speeded up the end of the war.

Copper Folly is a delightful house with five bedrooms and a gym. The Right Move estate agent blurb is perfectly delightful, the pictures lovely. But just a minute, in the paragraph about Turing isn't something missing? Doh, Right Move have forgotten to put in the fact that Turing committed suicide in the house.

The story's complicated but after this house was burgled Turing's homosexuality literally came out - which in 1952 was illegal. His punishments included chemical castration but also removal of his security clearance to the latest government research. He was found dead, according to the inquest from suicide, in Copper Folly, in 1954. 

Strangely no matter how 'difficult' a property's past is, Sleuth understands there is no need for estate agents to reveal it, unless directly asked.  

Hardly a happy ending for all this but in December 2013, Turing was, at last, given a Royal Pardon. Justice Secretary Chris Grayling said Turing deserved to be “remembered and recognised for his contribution to the war effort” and not for his later criminal conviction.

Lovely Copper Folly with its melancholy pastLovely Copper Folly with its melancholy past

Leeds Depressed But Realistic, Rochdale Rising

Sleuth made the wise decision on FA Cup weekend and went to Spotland where Rochdale FC beat Leeds United, two divisions higher, 2-0. It was a sparkling Dale performance including one of the goals of the season. This is a Youtube clip of the exquisite volley delivered in a typical Lancashire accent. 

During the match Sleuth enjoyed the gallows humour of the Leeds' fans. They were singing, 'We're not famous anymore' and 'We're so shit and we're ashamed of it'. Meanwhile Rochdale fans hailing the manager of the club Keith Hill adapted the Chelsea song of Jose Mourinho to Baldy Mourinho in recognition of Hill's follically challenged noggin. 

Keith Hill

Keith Hill

Bee Here Now

Every seven days or so Sleuth is stopped in the street and asked by policemen, concierges, self-righteous hacks, Alan Turing, estate agents, secret speakeasys, American brasseries, Mark Whyte, both the Brooks brothers, Keith Hill and the fans of Leeds United, this question: "Where are the largest representations of the Manchester Bee, the animal symbol of the city."

"Why," says Sleuth, "that would be on the clock tower of the Palace Hotel, the old Refuge Assurance building on Oxford Road. Bees are used as the metre high quarters of the hour on the clock face."

And to prove this he showed all the policemen, concierges, self-righteous hacks, Alan Turing, estate agents, secret speakeasys, American brasseries, Mark Whyte, both the Brooks brothers, Keith Hill and the fans of Leeds United, this picture.

Bee time - on the quarters

Bee time - on the quarters

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

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

Bit off topic, but as your editorial email is full - Rump n Ribs is being boarded up this morning, with "Police line do not cross" Tape all around it - Anyone know what went on?

Stephen DouglasJanuary 10th 2014.

Somebody smashed the place up last night, the police have somebody in custody for "suspected criminal damage" (according to the MEN, slightly ironically)

Trish KarneyJanuary 10th 2014.

Perhaps there was a poorer demand for ritually slaughtered halal meat than initially anticipated.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

What has this got to do with the place being smashed up? I think ManCon has already touched on how quiet it would be in their review when it was highlighted that alcohol wouldn't be served. I mean, who would want a steak without a glass of red wine or two?

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

It doesn't deserve to get smashed up though, does it Trish?

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

So, has anyone else heard about Harvey Nics courting the operators of Burger & Lobster to come up North and takeover their whole 2nd floor f&b operation?

MikeJanuary 10th 2014.

Burger & Lobster is in HN London so wouldn't surprise

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

Since Trinity Mirror took over, is "Manchester Evening News" still an appropriate title for this, our supposedly local evening newspaper? Manchester? Evening? News? Oh really! Shouldn't the ASA be investigating?

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

Where would the people of Manchester be, without knowing what the top ten fish and chip shop names were though??

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

Some days now my "evening" news gets delivered at half past eight - in the MORNING!

AnonymousJanuary 10th 2014.

Their one sided reporting of a case yesterday which is currently being heard in Manchester Crown Court was considered to be so potentially prejudicial to the case that the presiding judge swore out the jury so it could be discussed.

tierneychickJanuary 10th 2014.

But what about the Stilton Cheese Chocolate?

AnonymousJanuary 11th 2014.

"The MEN is better than this." No, the MEN is not better than this. Dreadful paper. And now since they moved the web version to the Trinity Mirror platform, has made it even less readable.

10 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

Since the takeover, now probably the most unstable & unreadable news website I visit. Never a huge fan of the MEN, but they did have a wonderful local news website, constantly updated and packed full of reader comments (there's virtually none anymore) - that Trinity Mirror have taken over and completely ruined, in my opinion. (Shouldn't there be one of those local media awards for this? The worst website in Manchester!) So thanks a lot GMG - John Scott must be spinning in his grave!

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

We should be grateful Trinity Mirror took it over. It must be a challenge to make it pay.

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

Grateful for an ever accelerating slide into triviality and mediocrity? How about employing some more real journalists to provide a bit more substance and interest to their output? I would genuinely spend a bit more time on their site if they did - do advertisers not pay for dwell time?

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

Pretty sure most of the stuff that they have from MCC is literally just the press release, even down to City Centre Supremo

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

The alternative to Trinity Mirror's MEN is no MEN. Anyone who thinks they could do a better job of providing a local newspaper and a website is free to have a go.

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

"Pretty sure most of the stuff that they have from MCC is literally just the press release, even down to City Centre Supremo" ... and GMP and TfGM and the Courts Service and large companies

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

The alternative to Trinity Mirror's MEN is no MEN - bollocks. The alternative to Trinity Mirror's MEN is an MEN with some journalistic content and without the need to drain resources off to support a large, centralised and expensive London head office and excessive shareholder returns.

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

I know Channel M made a huge loss for GMG, but not the MEN surely? Wasn't the paper sold simply because of that "market panic" about the imminent death of the local newspapers industry a few years ago? Also because those London luvvies at The Guardian wanted nothing to do with Manchester and the "unfashionable" provinces anymore?

AnonymousJanuary 13th 2014.

Trinity Mirror's HQ is in One Canada Square is it not? Office space there must cost a fortune. Yet, the MEN staff - or what's left of them - are shunted out to a converted shed on the outskirts of Oldham in the name of cost saving.

AnonymousJanuary 13th 2014.

If the MEN had any kind of interest or ability to investigative journalism nowadays, you would hope they might have taken a greater interest in the affairs of the apparently dysfunctional Co-op board. Its not like there weren't warning signs with the resignation of high profile executives and the group struggling to complete the Verde takeover - well before the scandal hit the national press. That the Co-op bank is now majority owned by private equity vulture funds and the group is facing potentially hundreds of job losses can be blamed, in part, on the lack of a robust local media - thanks for nothing MEN and your asset-stripping parent company Trinity Mirror.

AnonymousJanuary 12th 2014.

'Secret' and 'mysterious' openings. Could they be any more pretentious?

DavidJanuary 12th 2014.

The future of journalism is online.That applies to local journalism as well.A well written,vibrant website that actually held the local politicians to account rather than than a tired paper like MEN,which has no interest in any serious local journalism in case it upsets the Labour council leaders.Manchester is a very political city,a city of the right and left in political ideas. The By-Election in Wythenshaw,in which UKIP has a real chance of beating Labour,offers an opportunity for this website to start demonstrating a much more critical level of reporting,rather than slavish pro Labour advertorial.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
Poster BoyJanuary 13th 2014.


GimboidJanuary 13th 2014.

Ooh, that was close! You nearly managed to post a comment without mentioning the local Labour party! Keep trying David, you'll do it one day. I believe in you.

AnonymousJanuary 13th 2014.

"The By-Election in Wythenshaw,in which UKIP has a real chance of beating Labour". Ha. Yeah, you keep taking those meds David.

AnonymousJanuary 13th 2014.

Never remember the MEN been so overtly party political under GMG ownership? Exactly what is Trinity Mirror's relationship with the Labour Party and why have the Lib Dems, Tories & now even UKIP - all been so "apathetic" in letting this conglomerate take control of so many of our local newspapers?

Tom Brooks-PollockJanuary 14th 2014.

Sleuth, you need to chill. The Karney story is what's known as 'a bit of fun'. Karney is a lovable character who is both hilarious and does a lot of good work for the city. Which is probably why the MEN loves him.

1 Response: Reply To This...
Stephen DouglasJanuary 15th 2014.

I used to think that until I had cause to deal with him on council business. He was absolutely insufferable. His PR folk deserve every penny.

SleuthJanuary 14th 2014.

Did you write it Tom? Either way it was such a snivelling little story it was worthy of mention and worthy of derision. One thing cities such as Manchester should always avoid is tight-arsed prissy pettiness.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousJanuary 14th 2014.

But the MEN isn't "of this" city anymore. Wake up, they're like an enemy within now. Sure, they're not stupid and obviously daren't upset MCC - but reading between the lines these days, I kinda detect many of these Trinity Mirror journos just don't like our rainy, grim old town? (Geez, they certainly seem to revel & love it, just love it, when some "nobody" slags the place off, don't they just!)

Tom Brooks-PollockJanuary 21st 2014.

You can see who wrote it at the top of the piece, 'Sleuth' ;)

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