A new artisan bakery is tipped to open in Manchester’s Green Quarter later this year, bringing sweet and savoury croissants, impressive Danish pastries and flavoured focaccias to the Red Bank neighbourhood.
Called Half Dozen Other, it forms part of the Pot Kettle Black Group (PKB) and has been quietly making some of the best viennoiserie, bread and (our personal favourite) pretzel buns in Manchester for years.
Up until now, the bakery has played more of a back-of-house role with its bakers busily working away behind the scenes.
Last year it took its first step into the limelight when it moved into the Northern Quarter food hall Mackie Mayor, replacing Wolfstreet Coffee with a fresh menu of bakes, French toast and savoury croissants.
Now, the team is preparing to open its first ever customer-facing store – meaning that before long fans will be able to pick up their treats to enjoy at home.
Joining a community of independent food and drink businesses housed inside the Red Bank railway arches, Half Dozen Other will sit side by side with beloved continental pasta restaurant The Sparrows, Foundation Coffee House and Green Arches Brewery and Bar.
The bakery has signed a 10-year lease with FEC on a 4,500 sq. ft premises with the Red Bank Arches and will run both its retail and wholesale operations from the new site.
Specialising in ‘classic bakes with modern takes’, customers will be able to watch the Half Dozen Other bakers at work in the kitchen as they pop in for loaves of freshly-baked brioche or sourdough.
Mark Flanagan at Half Dozen Other, said: “We are really excited to open our doors at Red Bank. Due to the high demand for our wholesale baked goods and our desire to open our own retail bakehouse, this site is perfect for us.
“We’ll be serving up our standard breads, cakes and viennoiserie alongside our modern takes on classic bakes. All the while customers will be able to spectate on the mixing, rolling and shaping taking place at the Bakehouse.”
Developer FEC is working with a range of partners to create a programme of immersive events and unique experiences across 155 hectares of land that will, in due course, become known as Victoria North.
Jake Scott-Thrale, Asset Manager at FEC, said: “Half Dozen Other perfectly aligns with our approach of working with independent and entrepreneurial businesses to help people find and enjoy this emerging part of the city.
“Half Dozen Other has risen to fame on the brunch plates of Mancunians, so we’re excited to be working with them to expand their production capacity and moreover, bring their delicious bakes to local residents.
“It also marks an exciting next step in supporting a buzzing and social community as we bring forward the first developments within Victoria North, with numerous other businesses looking at the area as a potential new home too.
“It’s genuinely exciting to imagine how things will progress in the future as more residents and businesses move in and the community really takes shape.”
Feature image – Google Maps
Rio Ferdinand is helping change young lives with community programmes in Oldham and Salford
Ex-Manchester United and England defender Rio Ferdinand and his foundation’s wonderful work is helping better the lives of young people in Oldham, Salford and across Manchester as a whole.
Over the past year, the Rio Ferdinand Foundation and The Guinness Partnership have been putting together a vital social initiative aimed at providing opportunities and resources to young people across Greater Manchester, helping them develop their skills and aspirations for future working life.
Now, after a hugely successful 12-month campaign, their skills and progression community programme, participants are well and truly starting to feel the impact, with 90% of those taking part now stating that they are enjoying a clear idea and focus on what they want to do for a career.
It may have be thriving in Salford and Oldham at the moment, but given the benefit the scheme has already had — not to mention the ambition the Rio Ferdinand Foundation has shown around various areas of the UK since being set up in 2012 — we can only see this spreading further across the region.
The skills-based initiative engages young people aged under 25 years old and living in Guinness homes in a six-month skills-based programme which has been up and running in the two Manc boroughs, as well as the London boroughs of Southwark and Lambeth, since March 2022.
Young people from both Oldham and Salford take part in a weekly schedule of activities designed to tackle youth unemployment, including digital media training (photography, product design, filmmaking, podcasting), building and construction, CV workshops, mock interviews and more.
Not only do these shadowing opportunities garner confidence and raise aspirations among other young people in the local community, but they also help directly develop their employability skills via mentoring.
For instance, Matthew, 19 from Royton in Oldham, completed the programme and then was supported to apply to the Guinness Aspire Awards to request funding to purchase camera and lighting equipment to help him start a small local photography business. Quality stuff.
Matt says that the scheme “has been an amazing opportunity and has given [him] a chance to get back on the right path… I know what I want to do now and can’t wait to start… I would recommend that other people in my position get involved with it in the future.”
As well as markedly increasing participants health and well-being, all 100% of those involved across Salford and Oldham reported feeling more confident, with many now enjoying opportunities with the Rio Ferdinand Foundation’s partners such as Warner Music, Kiss FM, The Jockey Club and the Gym Group.
Speaking on the programme’s success, Rio himself said in a statement: “The Foundation is committed to working with young people at the heart of their communities to offer support, training, and opportunities to those that need it… engaging with the Guinness Partnership has provided a great boost to our reach and our work”.
Well in, Rio. Thankfully, he isn’t the only ex-Manchester-based footballer still trying to make a difference in the local community either:
Campbell, 38, was found dead in his home in Mossley, Tameside, on Saturday 3 July. He had been fatally assaulted and died of the injuries he sustained in the attack.
Belfield was arrested on 23 March 2023 by Suriname authorities on suspicion of drug-related offences – he’ll likely remain in the South American nation’s jurisdiction to face these charges.
Then GMP want to bring him back to Manchester to face questioning from GMP’s Major Incident Team.
Detective Chief Inspector Liz Hopkinson from GMP’s Major Incident team said: “The news of Belfield’s arrest is an important development in our investigation, we will be working with international law enforcement agencies to bring Belfield back to Manchester and continue in our pursuit to find answers for Thomas’ family.
“Through vigilance shown by our colleagues in South America, Belfield was recognised by Suriname’s law enforcement upon his arrest and information regarding his whereabouts was shared with our Force Critical Wanted Unit.
“We have previously released numerous appeals to ask for help in finding him and we thank the public for their continued support in this case.
“This is an excellent result which shows once again, that UK law enforcement does not give up on finding those abroad who are wanted for offences in the UK.”