If you’ve ever struggled to get to the Trafford Centre – because without a car it can be a real nightmare from most parts of Manchester – we’ve got some good news.
The brand new Metrolink line out to the shopping centre will open a lot earlier than expected.
The Trafford Park Metrolink tram line was completed at the start of November, with the last 15 metres of track being laid and the final concrete pour bringing construction on the project to an end.
While TfGM had predicted trams to be running by late 2020, they will in fact be fully open to passengers from April next year, a whole seven months before the project was initially scheduled for completion, the Manchester Evening News reports.
Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham made the announcement at the newly constructed Trafford Centre stop, as the first test tram arrived during the day – it’s being reported driver training will start in the New Year.
The new line will connect the Trafford Centre with the rest of the tram system, with construction costing £350 million.
When it’s open, the new line will have six stops on its route, running from the existing Pomona stop all the way to the popular shopping centre.
Manchester’s All Star Lanes is closing its doors permanently
All Star Lanes in Manchester’s Great Northern is set to close for good.
The general manager of All Star Lanes Manchester took to social media yesterday to announce the news stating that the venue will close, meaning the staff are ‘all being put under consultation to be made redundant’.
The venue had been open serving food and drinks, however, the local restrictions put in place in Greater Manchester meant bowling could no longer reopen as planned.
The All Star Lanes opened up in Manchester in 2013 with a £2.5 million investment.
Manager of All Star Lanes, Matthew Powell, made a public statement on his personal Facebook with the news.
He called out for anyone who is currently taking on staff of all levels to consider his team, which he describes as a ‘record-breaking’ and ‘target smashing bunch’.
The news comes after the UK officially entered a recession this morning, and despite persistent efforts from All Star Lanes to abide by the new social distancing measures and cleaning schedules they have sadly had to close.
Many people offered love in the comments of Matthew’s post, with one user writing ‘keep positive’ and another saying ‘stay strong’.
What’s next for the Trafford Centre as it goes up for auction
Everything you need to know…
Two months after filing for administration, Intu Trafford Centre is seeking a buyer for the £1.7 billion shopping centre.
The Trafford Centre is set to be put up for auction after pressure from its biggest lender.
It comes two months after the parent company, Intu Properties, collapsed into administration. The board of the entity which controls the Trafford Centre has appointed PJT Partners, the investment bank, and the property agent CBRE to market the site, according to Sky News.
The Trafford Centre was last publicly valued by Intu at just under £1.7billion, however, analysts are expected it to be sold for at least 20% less than that.
In a statement issued to Sky News, a spokesperson for the joint administrators of Intu properties said: “All parties are working constructively together to maximise value for this highly attractive asset.”
PJT is said to be have been advising the Trafford Centre’s single-biggest lender of capital, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), for some time before the administrators were called in back in July.
CPPIB is one of the world’s largest pension funds and reportedly wants a quick sale of the Trafford Centre.
Appointing advisors is set to kick off a formal sale process, and is also expected to attract the property tycoon who sold the Trafford Centre to Intu in 2011, John Whittaker, according to Sky News.
The auction will provide a crucial test to investors at a time when the Trafford Centre, like many retail outlets, has suffered due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Intu directly employs 3,000 people with a further 102,000 working in its shopping centres across the UK. There are a further 30,000 people employed in its supply chain.
The administrator, KPMG, appointed earlier this year, has secured funding to continue managing Intu’s portfolio for six months.
Property sources and insiders have said the Trafford Centre will attract substantial interest in the UK and international investments. One source added that ‘assets of Trafford’s quality and lot size do not come to market often’.
While we’ll have to wait a bit longer to discover the outcome of the auction, it’s good news for fans of the shopping centre and people who work there, as it looks unlikely it’ll have to close at this point.
Ed Sheeran is ‘expecting first baby’ with wife Cherry Seaborn
This is amazing news!
Ed Sheeran and wife Cherry Seaborn are expecting their first baby in a matter of weeks, according to reports.
This is amazing news for the Perfect singer and wife of two years, who are reportedly ‘over the moon’.
A source told the Sun that ‘Ed and Cherry are over the moon. They’re very excited, but have kept things very low key’.
They added: “Lockdown was a perfect excuse not to be seen out and about too much, but things are getting closer and the excitement has been building so they have started telling friends and family.”
The exciting news comes after Ed Sheeran took a break from his music career on Christmas Eve 2019, announcing the break on social media.
He wrote: “Hello all. Gonna go on another break again.
“The Divide era and tour changed my life in so many ways, but now it’s all over it’s time to go out and see some more of the world.
“I’ve been a bit non-stop since 2017 so I’m just gonna take a breather to travel, write and read. I’ll be off all social media until it’s time to come back.
“To my family and friends, see ya when I see ya, and to my fans, thank you for always being amazing. I promise to be back with some new music when the time is right, and I’ve lived a little more to actually have something to write about.”
And it looks like he will have plenty to write a new album about!
Ed, 29, and wife Cherry, 28, tied the knot in a secret ceremony in January 2019 following three years of dating. The source said they are making the last preparations at home as the baby is expected late this summer.
They added: “It’s a really happy time and their families are all totally delighted for them and cannot wait to meet the new arrival.”
Congrats Ed and Cherry!