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SLEUTH: Ed's Easy Diner | Elected Mayor | Koffee Pot | New NQ Bookstore

Week 8: ...in which Sleuth's sons look up the word 'bookstore' on their iPads

Written by . Published on February 27th 2015.

SLEUTH: Ed's Easy Diner | Elected Mayor | Koffee Pot | New NQ Bookstore

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


Rumours regarding the future of the supreme Grade II-listed mock Tudor former-furniture department store and Monsoon at no.15 King Street (which dates from 1902) have dragged on for months since the clothes retailer closed in March 2013. Hawksmoor, Meat Liquor, Shake Shack, Iberica, Jigsaw, and Wigan Tony's Black Truffle Kebab shop have all been for a snoop around the unit. Still, the unit has been coated in Teflon, nothing has stuck.

Now there seems to be a shred of evidence that Ed's Easy Diner - the US-diner themed restaurant which first opened in Soho in 1987 - have secured the site. Sleuth spotted the below map here which appears to show Ed's confirmed on an Experian GOAD plan (a retail property intelligence system, apparently, not to be confused with an Experian GONAD - which is something different entirely) of King Street. Ed's will cater to Manchester's seemingly bottomless appetite for fast Americana food with hot dogs, burgerzzzzzzzzzzz...... *slump*

King Street GONADKing Street GONAD

Ed's Easy DinerEd's Easy Diner


Sleuth was at the signing of the £6bn devolution of health and social care responsibilities to the Greater Manchester in the Town Hall. This is part of a process of devolution that will also lead to an elected mayor for Greater Manchester along the Boris Johnson model in London. "So who do think will be elected mayor in 2017?" Sleuth was asked. At the press conference later there was George Osborne, Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, Health Secretary, Simon Stevens, boss of NHS England and one local politician, Sir Richard Leese, Manchester's council leader. Seems to Sleuth like the Labour candidate for elected mayor has already been decided.


Given the senior government figures, given the status of the event, Sleuth was charmed by the nature of open government at, as George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer described, "This historic day for Greater Manchester and the NHS." Sleuth waltzed into the Town Hall, asked where the event was taking place, waltzed upstairs and into the Reception Room and sat down. No heavies, no police with guns. In today's paranoid times it was so very, very refreshing.

Open governmentSleuth loves an open government


In the press conference, Jeremy Hunt remarked on the progressive, innovative and forward-thinking hospitals in Greater Manchester. Sleuth hoped the Health Secretary didn't look up. On the wall of the Town Hall was the oldest bakelite phone still on any building in any part of the country.

Town Hall phoneTown Hall phone


Sleuth is charmed. After we announced the future opening of Aspidistra Books here, along comes Chapter One. The latter will be biggish too, 5,000 sq ft with a cafe and an events space for readings. The owners will be Christine Cafun and Lyndsy Kirkman, the location will be the Northern Quarter at the junction of Lever Street and Dale Street. It should be operational in a couple of months. Sleuth can't wait. "Hey sons," said Sleuth to his three boys, "Great news, Manchester is becoming more civilised with a new bookshop." There was no response, they were all looking up the phrase 'bookshop' on Wikipedia on their smart phones, notebooks and other devices.

Dale Street siteDale Street site


Following a series of the usual hold-ups (ya know, extractions and stuff), NQ's favourite indie 'ole dependable caf', Koffee Pot, look very close to launching KP 2.0 at the top end of Oldham Street... "if the ruddy gas would work," Sleuth's told. Sleuth's very much looking forward to this reopening, owner Chris has brought back his former business partner, Sam Dunwoodie, who recently helped hipster-favourite The Clove Club bag a Michelin star in London. The new Koffee Pot will include an expanded menu including "home-cured salt beef bagels with homemade pickles, beef dripping chips and an amazing grilled cheese sandwich, perhaps even some booze to go with it." Ace.

New Koffee Pot

Koffee Pot New 2New Koffee Pot


Sleuth hears there's a special police van parked at the back of Primark on certain days. This is to catch all the shoplifters emptying the shelves at the ultra bargain store. Sleuth scratches his head over this, surely people can't be selling the clothes on. "Give us a fiver mate for these seventeen shirts, four suits, three pairs of shoes, seven pairs of trousers, two Panama hats and five hugely entertaining Christmas jumpers with flashing reindeer horns." 


...Goes to this lot, who we can only presume are rabbits (and was this steak about £6? Weird)


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

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

A themed diner? That's gonna turn King Street around. Somewhere for the Kedem protesters to get refreshments too. Phatang!

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

The one in Soho is overpriced and not very good. A bit gawdy for that lovely building i think. Why don't they open a Bettys of Harrogate there or something more befiitting to that street. There is a Hermes on there isn't there. I don't think that this is going to get the English rooting for their passports to visit an independent Mancunia do you?

3 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

I agree..BETTYS perfect....

Ghostly TomFebruary 27th 2015.

Betty's would be wonderful but there was more chance of travelling from East to West Berlin at the height of the Cold War than for Betty's to cross the border from Yorkshire to Lancashire.

AnonymousMarch 1st 2015.

Slatterys much more NW? There also use to be a very small french patisserie on Kings St where Hermes is. Maybe that could come back. I think the rents made them move (?) to the back of M&S in that strange square before the IRA.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

The Aspidistra sounds terrific. People with souls in the NQ. Wannabe Landanas in Spinningfields.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

Jeremy Hunt and Greater Manchester's innovative hospitals. Shameside and Shocking Hill presumably are not included in this list then.

Kevin PeelFebruary 27th 2015.

I'm really excited about the new bookshop. I've been saying for ages that we need more to join the little stall on Church Street and Paramount on Shudehill and the book section at Oxfam on Oldham Street! We're also working on exciting proposals for the 'green' space pictured outside, currently a favourite haunt of drug dealers. Stay tuned...

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

Wasn't that where Harry Hall's first moved to after July '96?

Henry VFebruary 27th 2015.

Wow, a bookshop. Cute. Can we do fax machines, telex equipment, those natty eight track video jobbies? Filofaxes would be cute.

1 Response: Reply To This...
JonnyFebruary 27th 2015.

Filofaxes still sell very well. Just check out WHSmith if you don't believe me.

SteamyFebruary 27th 2015.

"Manchester Foodies" :-( Anybody that describes themselves as a foodie needs to have a stern word with themselves.

JonnyFebruary 27th 2015.

Wouldn't a city mayor actually be a "Ken Livingstone" model? Is he being airbrushed from history? The bikes should also be called "Livingstones bikes" too, as it was him that introduced them.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

Don't be surprised, the Tories claimed all the glory for the Olympics too even though they opposed the bid.

Ghostly TomFebruary 27th 2015.

Livingstone Bikes doesn't alliterate very well though does it?

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

Ed's Easy Diner - please piss off.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2015.

King Street is the new Printworks. The Corn Exchange has a better line up of restaurants. Spinningfields is becoming the area of choice for restauranteurs.

AnonymousMarch 1st 2015.

Eds Easy Diner on King Street? You've GOT to be kidding me. But mainly what a waste of a great unit. This is the unfortunate outcome when planning restrictions are relaxed, landlords become greedy and the character of the area changes for good. King Street will really be on the slippery slope if this goes through. Let's hope that just like TGI Fridays attempt to open on St Anne's Square, the council maintains the current planning restrictions on the unit and moves to protect the character of this important street. Wonder what CityCo and Mr Binns have to say about this - their strategy to diversify the streets offering on some of the smaller more inflexible units is sound. But I firmly believe this unit should stay as retail use only as it's likely that it's only the landlord's unrealistic rental demands that is keeping it empty.

2 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousMarch 2nd 2015.

I agree with you totally. This is not an appropriate site for this type of venture. Would they put an Ed's on Bond street? Of course they wouldn't. Why not a small Hamleys Toyshop or a stand alone Tiffanys. Slatterys is a great idea too. They are long overdue a central presence.Not a gawdy dated American diner. Please Manchester council do not allow this to happen. There are loads of empty places in Manchester more fitting for this,even the Corn Exchange.

AnonymousMarch 2nd 2015.

Wouldn't worry about it too much, it's crap, it's a crap concept and it will bomb. Byron's must be on it's backside by now, don't think I've seen it more than a quarter full, and most times there is a handful of people in it.

Paul SoanesMarch 2nd 2015.

Quite right about Labour candidate being elected in the future for mayor, the same thing happened with the Deputy Police Commissioner being appointed. Police Commissioner Tony Lloyds friend and ex Labour councilor Jim Battle...its who you know!

David in CheshireMarch 10th 2015.

I've eaten in Ed's Diner at Euston. Never again. Worst diner I have ever encountered. "American" is a misnomer - Americans wouldn't tolerate it.

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