Explore the Northern Quarter. Manchester Craft and Design.

If you explore the Northern Quarter you might come across the Manchester Craft and Design centre. We all know how important it is to support our local small businesses. From food to fashion and everything in between, small businesses are the backbone of the UK. Well the Manchester Craft and Design centre is the place to go and support your local craft artists. In the very words of Elbow front man Guy Garvey, “If you like to give personal gifts then there is nowhere better in the North West. I’m proud to be a patron.”

Hidden in an old Northern Quarter Fish Market.

The first thing that will strike you when you visit the centre is the actual building it is housed in. The building is a former Victorian fish market. Inside you can still see some of the old fish shops that would have plied their produce to people across Manchester (see main picture). It really adds an atmosphere to the place. Left derelict, like a lot of the Northern Quarter in the 70’s, the building wasn’t resurrected until 1982 when the craft community took over. Since then it has been one of the main catalyst for the regeneration that has taken part in the Northern Quarter.

An Oasis of calm right in the city

The centre has until recently housed a great little cafe called The Oak street cafe which did some of the best soups in Manchester. Sadly due to covid the cafe has closed but they are looking for pop ups to take its place with a view to a more permanent fixture when the world gets back to normal. It is still a really unique and beautiful place to visit. You can walk around the 2 floors and pop in to the artists studios and stores. From bespoke jewellery and ceramics to abstract paintings and glass works, the centre is a perfect place to buy that gift for someone who has everything. Have a look at a list of their residents here.

Another great reason to visit is that there is always an exhibition on. Supporting local artists and encouraging all of us to appreciate their work a bit more.

Explore the Northern Quarter

If you’d like to learn more about Manchester and explore some of its hidden gems like the Arts centre, book a tour with Manchesterbites. We run tasty food tours around our city. Showing you not only the best parts of the world’s first city but also eating some amazing locally produced dishes as we go. Check out www.manchesterbites.com/tours for more details.

Manchester Craft and Design Centre. Housed in a Victorian fish market