Music legend Liam Gallagher is making the launch of the new Bee Network that much better by surprising Mancs with a series of special announcements on Metrolink trams this week.
The former Oasis frontman has teamed up with Transport for Greater Manchester and the Bee Network to be the voice of the Eccles tram line for the entire week as commuters travel in and out of Manchester city centre to make their journeys more entertaining.
Acting as the announcer on the pink line from Eccles all the way to Ashton-under-Lyne via Salford Quays and Media City UK from Wednesday until Sunday, 15 October, the iconic Manc musicians will be updating passengers on which stops they’re arriving at plenty more.
And, of course, in true LG fashion, the youngest Gallagher brother has made his voiceover revolve exactly what you’d expect: him being effortlessly funny, as laid-back as you can imagine and bigging up his beloved treble-winners, Manchester City. Here’s a taster.
Also set up as part of the celebrations for Beyond the Music, a brand-new Manc music festival and conference taking place until Saturday, 14 October, aiming to spotlight new music and grassroots venues, they managed to get one of the biggest names in the business to lend his pipes for the week.
Teasing the surprise announcements in a statement earlier this week, a spokesperson for Liam Gallagher said: “Liam’s doing his bit to get behind the festival and encourage people to get into the city and support new up-and-coming talent.
“When the request was first made by Bee Network champion Andy Burnham, Liam loved the idea of surprising tram users by doing the announcements and he was given the chance to choose his favourite line. You’ll have to get onto a tram into the city to find out which it is!”
We can now confirm that it is indeed the Eccles line, so if you’re heading that way or simply fancy a fun journey narrated by one of Manchester’s musical heroes, tap on to the tram sometime this week — just make sure to tap off!
Greater Manchester Mayor Burnham said it was “truly wonderful” to see the inaugural Beyond the Music finally taking place with such a strong line-up in venues across the city.
The founding member of the Beyond the Music co-operative, alongside Manchester City Council, CityCo and the city centre BIDs, AO Arena, Coop Live and Factory International, added: “We are supporting it all the way and are confident that it will become a fixture in the city’s calendar.
“True to Manchester’s traditions, Beyond The Music is a cooperative endeavour which aims to give all players in the music industry an equal voice and equal say on the change it needs. By doing that, our aim is to strengthen one of Manchester’s, and Britain’s, most important exports.
“There surely can’t be any better way of marking the launch of the Bee Network and the first Beyond The Music than getting one of Manchester’s most famous voices announcing the stops on his favourite Metrolink line.
“It means a lot to us that Liam has agreed to do this and show his support for his home city”, he continued. “Supporting our music venues and giving people cheaper and better public transport to and from our gigs is what we’re all about.
“I am sure that Liam’s dulcet tones will wake up a few early-morning commuters, brighten up many a journey and produce a lot of smiles along the way.”
More than 100 artists will be performing at 17 different grassroots venues across the city for the inaugural Beyond The Music fest, and punters are being urged to make the most of the new Bee Network system to travel around the city to both enjoy and support Manchester’s incredible music heritage.
You can find out more about Beyond The Music festival, including a select number of free live sets that you can enjoy around Manchester city centre down below:
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.”