Wigan’s former Debenhams department store is set to open again as a huge charity outlet.
After the well loved British department store closed its doors for good and disappeared from the high street, residents wondered whether the empty plot would ever be used again.
But now Rebuild With Hope has announced plans to take over the enormous space, located in the Grand Arcade, giving it a new lease of life as what could be the ‘country’s biggest charity shop’.
The flagship outlet will sell famous high street brand names in homeware and accessories at discounted prices of up to 70% off.
The foundation provides opportunities and works alongside people with barriers to employment, including ex-services veterans, homeless people, ex-offenders, refugees and asylum-seekers.
It provides direct employment for both full-time and part-time work, training opportunities and helps people access employment.
The organisation will occupy both floors of the unit, using the ground floor for retail space and the first floor for storage, training, drop-ins and wrap-around support.
Eight staff have already been recruited to stack the shelves for the retail space, while the charity will use sales to help fund its work.
As reported in Wigan Today, chief executive officer Louise Atherton said: “We have only been around for a couple of years but this is massive for us.
“I am from Wigan and was hoping that we could establish our base here and couldn’t believe it when this opportunity arose.
“We receive donations and seconds, but a lot of the products we will sell are surplus from high street names. A lot is donated by a company we work with and we also purchase from other organisations which get the stock from retailers.
“It means we can sell top quality products at discounts of up to 70 per cent and we have loads in reserve.”
Because Rebuild With Hope is a charity it does not pay rent for its unit in the Grand Arcade.
But, there is a clause which means bosses of the mall can change their mind and give the retailer 28 days’ notice to quit – which Ms Atherton hopes won’t be invoked.
As a back-up plan the charity will also begin looking for alternative premises for its operation.
While there are contractual technicalities to settle, at the moment there is a hope there can be a soft opening on Thursday August 17th. An official launch date will then be arranged towards the end of September.
Celebrate Embankment Kitchen’s fourth birthday with prizes to be won throughout October
There’s some fantastic prizes to be won throughout the whole month
Manchester restaurant, bar & grill Embankment Kitchen is celebrating its fourth birthday, where diners will receive a scratch card to win a variety of prizes throughout October.
Celebrations kick off on Wednesday, October 4th at the sophisticated venue, located in the CitySuites Aparthotel, and will continue throughout the entire month.
The birthday month will feature live music every Thursday, a special birthday cocktail menu, and the chance to win some big prizes too.
Diners also receive 25% off* their food bill, throughout October, every Tuesday to Saturday (*This offer is for the a la carte menu only).
Guests could also find themselves sipping on free beer, prosecco and cocktails, or even enjoying a meal on the house – all to be won on the Embankment birthday scratch cards.
The live music features a range of talented artists performing throughout the evening, from duos covering modern songs to the fabulous gypsy jazz band The String Beans.
Embankment’s special birthday cocktail menu includes the Peach Blossom Bellini, made with Grey Goose Vodka and Baron de Marck Champagne, with notes of Peach and Rosemary.
Sip on the delightful A Toast To 4, made with Beefeater gin, strawberry and lemon flavours and topped with Baron de Marck Champagne.
The EK Sour is made with Havana 7, Disaronno, Lemon, Pineapple, and the Birthday Bubbles cocktail is made with Tanqueray 10, Aperol, Passionfruit, Lemon, Soda – perfect for the celebration.
Guests who chose to dine at Embankment Kitchen throughout October will receive a scratch card with one of the below prizes:
- 15% off food (*Food only. Not valid in conjunction with any other offer or set menu)
- Free beer or prosecco
- Free cocktail
- Free starter or dessert (*When dining with a main)
- Your meal on Embankment – x2
To book a table and celebrate with Embankment and be in with the chance to win great prizes, click HERE.
Embankment Kitchen, CitySuites Aparthotel, 16 Chapel St, Salford
Sunak announces HS2 leg to Manchester to be scrapped
Rishi Sunak announces at the Tory party conference that the Birmingham to Manchester leg of the HS2 is to be scrapped.
The Prime Minister made a key speech at the conference held in Manchester city centre where he confirmed the rail line will stop in Manchester but from Birmingham it will switch onto using the existing West Coast Mainline track.
This means the high speed route, to connect the north with the south, will no longer exist, effectively confirming days of speculation.
After being introduced by his wife, Akshata Murty, as a ‘wonderful father, my best friend, your prime minister’, Mr Sunak thanked both his wife and the audience.
Speaking live from Manchester, Mr Sunak called HS2 the ‘ultimate example of the old consensus’.
The Prime Minister then said he’s cancelling ‘the rest of the HS2 project’ – which means everything outside the London to Birmingham leg, and is currently under construction.
He then said he ‘will reinvest every single penny’ saved from HS2 – £36 billion pounds – into hundreds of new transport projects in the North and in the Midlands, as well as across the country.
He went on to say that the north would benefit from the new projects rather than HS2, saying he ‘challenges anyone to tell me with a straight face that all of that isn’t what the north really needs’.
Mr Sunak said: “With our new Network North, you will be able to get from Manchester to the new station in Bradford in 30 minutes, Sheffield in 42 minutes, and to Hull in 84 minutes on a fully, electrified line.”
He continued: “So those who wish to disagree with me, I respect that. But they should have the honesty to admit that they would now be cancelling the hundreds of alternative projects right across the country that people will benefit from instead.
“I think our plan is simply a better long term investment of £36 billion pounds of taxpayers money.”
He also said that he will keep single bus fares capped at £2 ‘across the whole country’.
The prime minister added: “I say, to those who backed the project in the first place, the facts have changed. And the right thing to do when the facts change, is to have the courage to change direction.
The anticipated announcement came after defence secretary Grant Shapps suggested a change in HS2 plans was thanks to fewer people travelling into work and instead choosing to work from home, following the coronavirus pandemic.
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham has labelled the, now confirmed, decision as ‘disgraceful’.
Gary Neville welcomes new £400m five-star hotel and residences to Manchester
The world famous W Hotel and W Residences will open in 2027
Exciting first look images are revealed for the hugely anticipated £400 million five-star hotel and residency set to open in 2027.
Gary Neville’s Relentless Developments has announced the St Michael’s development, currently being built between Deansgate and Albert Square, will be bringing with it a world famous hotel brand
The St Michael’s plot, soon to be home to luxury W Hotels and W Residences, will be the first outside London and one of 20 around the world, in a major deal with Marriott International.
The glossy new arrival will see hotel-inspired living offered at St Michael’s 217 apartments, offering buyers the opportunity to purchase a permanent residence within Manchester’s most exclusive postcode.
The iconic 41-storey tower will boast a 162-room hotel, with the tower also housing W Residences, a complex of 217 apartments which will be offered for sale from November, with occupancy also in 2027.
The live-in residences will also boast the facilities of the W Hotels, including 24-hour concierge (W’s whenever/wherever service), round-the-clock in-residence dining, laundry and dry cleaning, as well as the hotel’s gyms and other features.
“W Hotel and W Residences are going to put the distinctive 41-storey tower that is No.2 St Michael’s on the global map,” said Neville, Director, Relentless Developments.
“There is no better home for W Hotel in the North of England than Manchester.
“This is a bold city which continues to defy expectations and which embodies the same values of originality and passion that have made the W Hotel experience world-renowned.
“Situated alongside this, W Residences Manchester will be immersive, design-forward homes that will set a new standard in hotel-inspired living and massively raise the bar for city-centre home ownership.”
“I’d like to thank Marriott International and our developer partner, Salboy, for seeing the potential in this scheme and remaining committed to our vision,” he added.