Pre-millennium Manchester is unrecognisable to the city that exists today.
Back then, there was no Beetham Tower, no Spinningfields, no flats bumping their heads on the clouds hanging above New Islington.
Everything has changed in the past twenty years – and various architects, developers and politicians have rightly enjoyed credit for turning our region into one of the world’s most exciting places to live.
But LOFT is something of an unsung hero in the assembly of the Manchester skyline.
As Manchester began to blossom with brand new flats, apartment, blocks, offices and student accommodation in the early noughties, a man named Benjamin Hall created LOFT – which became the place to go to furnish interiors.
Two decades on, Benjamin and his hundred-strong team are continuing to add style to Mancunia with their brand new store in Northern Quarter.
Beginning as Buy-To-Let Furnishings with a single van in 2003, LOFT has kept pace with Manchester and grown almost in parallel – expanding into a nationwide provider for high quality furnishings and interiors.
The company now employs 135 people full-time – with dedicated departments that cater for landlords, agents, student accommodation providers and BTR developers.
The LOFT Shop on High Street, which opened in February, is an exciting addition to Manchester city centre – with different deals available almost every day of the week.
These include ‘Sofa Sunday’ where customers can receive 10% off all sofas, ‘Accessories Tuesday’ (buy two cushions get one half price). We love this one; ‘Dine With Us Wednesday’ – offering 15% discounts on dining sets. ‘My Favourite Chair Thursday’ includes 10% discount on all armchairs, and at the end of the week there’s ‘That Friday Feeling’ – with discounts on bed frames and mattresses.
Shoppers can benefit from free delivery, assembly and installation with purchases (along with next day delivery available).
High-end furnishings come at affordable prices – with expert team members on hand in-store to offer insightful design advice.
LOFT has thrived by staying in tune with market trends – which have changed rapidly and dramatically during Manchester’s revival, whilst also remaining rigidly committed to its original core values.
Their promise is simple: All new furnishings come delivered, assembled and installed; and any old items are removed, replaced and recycled.
The LOFT Shop on High Street has been designed with the community in mind; offering trendy, characterful furnishings for the everyday home.
LOFT is continuing to play a huge part in the rejuvenation of Manchester, which it has done for over 17 years.
Now, the team is all set for another chapter.
You can check out LOFT’s new shop at 26-28 High Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M4 1QB.
Nespresso opens new ‘experiential’ Trafford Centre store with free tastings, masterclasses, and more
Nespresso has opened a brand-new “experiential boutique” store inside the Trafford Centre, and it all looks very fancy.
Designed to engage both existing and new Nespresso customers through a range of “unique and personalised experiences”, the new Trafford Centre store means Greater Manchester‘s community of coffee lovers now get an unrivalled access to the beloved brand’s wide range of blends, machines, and accessories.
Shoppers will get to “immerse themselves in the world of Nespresso” through a sophisticated ‘Coffee as an Art’ tasting and masterclass area – with state-of-the-art coffee machines, and customised latte art workshops.
You can also create your own coffee recipes using digital tutorials and Nespresso machines at the interactive ‘Taste & Discover’ area, where specialists will be on hand to help you explore the full Nespresso range, and offer one-on-one coffee learning, tasting, and machine demonstrations so you can better understand your taste preferences.
There’s even a ‘Nespresso & You’ personalisation area so you can get your own travel mugs engraved with a name or personal message.
The new Trafford Centre store is also big on sustainability.
As Nespresso capsules are made of 80% recycled aluminium, making them infinitely recyclable, and the company co-founded the UK’s first industry-wide coffee capsule recycling scheme back in 2021, the brand’s sustainable ethics have been continued with throughout the design new store.
Not only is the new store run on 100% renewable energy and features a dedicated customer capsule return and recycling area, but tabletops are also made with used coffee grounds and 100% Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified wood, and there’s also an AR-powered ‘Circularity’ area showing how capsules are recycled and given a second life.
“Our boutiques are designed to encourage and support coffee exploration, creating an elevated experience for customers [and] the brand-new opening of our latest boutique at the Trafford Centre creates a new and innovative way for shoppers to enjoy and understand more about their coffee,” explained Luke Horwath – Head of Retail at Nespresso UK & ROI.
“The digital resources as well as our expertly trained staff will enable customers to learn about Nespresso blends, recipes, brewing methods, and our commitment to sustainability.”
And to top it all off, in a bid to properly celebrate the start of summer, the new Trafford Centre store is the only place in the UK where you can get yourself an exclusive first look and taste of Nespresso’s new Summer Iced range ahead of the collection’s official release on 30 May.
If you fancy seeing what the new Nespresso store is all about, it’s located on the Upper Regent Crescent next to the Trafford Centre’s New Orleans entrance.
Featured Image – Supplied
Britain’s ‘biggest ever’ bus driver recruitment campaign launches in Greater Manchester
A massive bus driver recruitment campaign has been launched across Greater Manchester to get ready for the Bee Network.
Only a matter of weeks after the first bright yellow Bee Network buses started hitting streets across the region, with more and more being spotted out and about by locals as the days go on, Go North West has today kicked-off Britain’s biggest-ever recruitment campaign for bus drivers ready for the Greater Manchester public transport service to officially launch later this year.
And you might recognise it’s taken inspiration from a certain 80s cult-classic action film for it.
With the Bee Network set to be rolled-out in September, the transport company – which was selected by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) in late 2022 as the winner of its first two bus contracts – has big plans to hire up to 300 new drivers for its ‘Elite Bus Driver Academy’.
Themed as ‘Be an Elite Driver’, with Maverick and the rest Top Gun team serving as some worthy inspiration, the recruitment campaign sees existing Go North West bus drivers all dressed up in fighter pilot-style uniforms in an attempt to “bring to life the prestige of being a driver” and the different types of careers on offer for people.
The recruitment campaign encourages those interested to become “the best of the best”, to find the thing that “makes them awesome”, and to brace themselves for a career with “wheels…that you’ll steer”.
Open both to existing bus driver licence holders and to those who have never sat behind the wheel of a bus before, applicants will undertake a six-week intensive training programme, and will operate routes across Bolton and Wigan – which are the first two areas to be franchised under TfGM and Mayor Andy Burnham’s new integrated London-style vision for local buses.
Bus driver jobs include 20 days’ annual holiday, generous pensions, and pay rates that quickly increase with experience.
Successful applicants will get to earn themselves upwards of £28,000 per year.
Not only that, but Go North West is also going to be offering longer-term apprenticeships that combine studying with hands-on driving to allow people to “earn while they learn”.
Having quadrupled the size of its training team in anticipation of an influx of new recruits, Go North West says it’s “excited” for this new chapter for bus travel in the region.
Speaking on the recruitment campaign’s launch, Nigel Featham – Managing Director of Go North West – said the company is “very proud” to be delivering these bus services for Greater Manchester, adding: “This is a groundbreaking recruitment campaign to match the huge scale of change that we’ll be helping to deliver in Greater Manchester’s public transport.”
“We’ve already had lots of interest in driving the new Bee Network buses and we’re expecting thousands of applications.”
Once the new contracts are underway, Go North West will operate more than 500 buses from Bolton and Wigan, as well as from its existing Queen’s Road depot in central Manchester – with the company’s facility in Bolton being the largest UK bus depot outside London.