A brand new free school is being built in Belle Vue and will be run by Co-op
The Belle Vue school will launch in temporary accommodation before moving to the new building in September 2023, and the Department for Education and local council have selected Co-Op as its official operator.
The Co-Op will run a new secondary school in Belle Vue, Manchester City Council has confirmed.
The school, which will have space for 1,200 students aged 11-16, is set to open in temporary accommodation in September 2021 – welcoming an initial set of 120 Year 7 pupils.
A fresh intake of 11-year-olds will be added over successive years until full capacity is reached in every group from Year 7 to Year 11 in 2027.
The Co-Op’s Academies Trust branch already operates 26 education facilities in England – including one in North Manchester.
The Belle Vue school will open in a temporary location before moving to a new permanent building in September 2023 – with the Department for Education and local council selecting Co-Op as its official operator.
The new school has been built to meet rising demand for places in Manchester – with the number of pupils in local schools continuing to grow.
Councillor Garry Bridges, Executive Member for Children and Schools, Manchester City Council, said: “Co-op have a good track record of operating schools in Manchester and elsewhere and it’s great news that they’re going to be at the helm of this much-needed brand new school in this part of the city.
“Pupil numbers are set to continue to rise across Manchester and we’re already working closely with schools and others on this, and have detailed plans in place to ensure we have the right number of places in the right locations to meet this growing demand.
“Our children and young people deserve the best education, delivered in the best buildings, and this is what we’re determined to ensure they get.”
The Co-op Academies Trust wants to make the new facility ‘environmentally friendly’ – with plans to involve pupils in the design of the building.
Chris Tomlinson, CEO of Co-op Academies Trust, said: “We’re determined to create a school that will be a beacon of both educational and environmental standards.
“We’re a vibrant Trust that provides an engaging, inspiring and innovative curriculum, underpinned by Co-op values and principles, that equips young people with the skills, knowledge, understanding and qualifications they need to make a success of their lives.
“Inspired by the Co-op’s 1 Angel Square in central Manchester, which is one of the greenest offices in the world, we want to engage local year 5 and 6 pupils in the design of the new school and explore with them what environmentally responsible elements can be incorporated into it.”
Pupils set to enter secondary school will now be able to include Co-op Academy Belle Vue in their list of preferred schools.
This application process is open, with a deadline for secondary school places set for 31 October.
Sir David Jason set for TV return in Only Fools and Horses documentary Christmas special
In a surprise bit of festive news, the only and only Sir David Jason is returning for an Only Fools and Horses Christmas special this December. Lovely jubbly!
The best-loved and most-watched British comedy of all time will be back on our screens in documentary form this festive season, with Del Boy himself David Jason revisiting the iconic comedy character after 20 years he last played him on screen.
While the legendary sitcom was broadcast on BBC back in the day, the highly-anticipated Only Fools doc will be airing on Channel 5 right before Christmas as a special one-off programme.
Looking back on the show’s incredible run on UK screens over seven series and the several ‘Christmas Cracker’ specials, specifically, the latest Only Fools and Horses documentary will see Jason and a number of other guests appearing to chat about the legendary show.
While it’s still unclear how many of the original cast will be appearing, Jason’s on-screen wife Tessa Peake-Jones (Raquel) is confirmed to be appearing along with other special guests including newscaster Krishnan Guru-Murthy and Bendiorm‘s Sherrie Hewson.
Sadly, a full theatrical reunion just isn’t on the cards following the deaths of Roger Lloyd Pack (Trigger), Kenneth MacDonald (Mike the Landlord) and Buster Merryfield (Uncle Albert) in the 30 years since the show ended its run.
Only Fools writer John Sullivan also sadly passed away aged 64 in 2011 and fellow co-star Nicholas Lyndhurst, a.k.a. Rodney Trotter, told Metro: “We can’t. John is no longer with us. John was the driving force of the show and we have also lost quite a few cast members now.
“I don’t think I could do it without them and I certainly couldn’t do it without John. At the risk of depressing everyone, I think the last two times I’ve seen David has been at funerals.”
Simply entitled, ‘The Story Of Only Fools And Horses At Christmas’, the 90-minute special is yet to have its broadcast date fully confirmed but you best keep your eyes peeled on the TV guide — we’ll let you know as soon we do.
Jason, 81, has only just recovered from hip surgery earlier this year, so it’ll be nice to see his familiar grin back on our screens.
Right, we’re off to binge a whole series on UK Gold.
Habas restaurant in Manchester announces shock closure – with huge closing-down discount
Habas, the Middle Eastern restaurant launched by the team behind El Gato Negro, has announced its shock closure.
The subterranean restaurant will be going out with a bang though, promising one last knees-up with a big discount.
Habas will be doing 25% off its entire food and drink menu this New Year’s Eve so that fans of the eatery can raise a glass to the Manchester restaurant.
They’re also hoping that Mancs will raise a glass to new beginnings, teasing a brand new concept.
Habas is located at Brown Street in Manchester city centre and has been serving up its Middle Eastern menu since 2021.
It comes from Mills Hill Developments Limited, the company also responsible for El Gato Negro and Canto, fronted by celebrated chef Simon Shaw.
Habas has stressed that its closure ‘is not forever’ as it announces details of its New Year’s Eve closing down party.
You can ring in the new year with a selection of mezze dishes, sharing platters and small plates, feasting on chicken tagine and traditional tzatziki, all 25% off on Sunday 31 December.
Drinks, too, like the cranberry elderflower martini, blackberry ginger smash and clementine daquiri will be with 25% off.
Simon Shaw, Chef Parton at Mills Hill Developments Limited, said: “As of January 2024, we have made the decision to close the doors of Habas Bar & Restaurant, however we are thrilled to announce that our Brown Street venue has an exciting new concept on the way.
“Throughout December, Habas, will continue serving up the city’s best middle-eastern cuisine, so make sure you pop in and see us. AND on New Year’s Eve, Habas, will be hosting an unforgettable celebration with 25% off food and drinks. We want to rejoice with all of our customers, with one final hurrah!
“We would like to thank all of our guests and reassure Habas fans that this is not the end of Habas Bar & Restaurant forever, simply a farewell from Brown Street for now.
“We look forward to welcoming you to our new exciting concept in Q1 of 2024.”