What we know this morning about Greater Manchester’s new coronavirus restrictions
Measures came into force at midnight putting tighter restrictions on social gatherings in Greater Manchester and other parts of the north, banning residents from separate households from meeting indoors.
Measures came into force at midnight putting tighter restrictions on social gatherings in Greater Manchester and other parts of the north; banning residents from separate households from meeting indoors.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock made the sudden announcement yesterday evening (30 July), explaining that people in certain areas would no long be permitted to congregate due to a rise in COVID-19 cases across these regions.
The areas to which the ban applies are:
Blackburn with Darwen
The new guidelines, which were enforced in Greater Manchester following discussions with local Mayor Andy Burnham, will apparently be reviewed on a weekly basis.
Local authorities and police will have the power to enforce the rules whilst they remain in place, and anyone caught breaching them can face a £100 fine.
News of the indoor ban was initially published in short bursts via Twitter with little context, leaving residents confused as to whether they were still allowed to go to work, enter shops or visit pubs and restaurants.
But more details have been published this morning.
Can I meet with others in the a bar, restaurant, cafe or garden?
The new rules state that no two households should meet indoors in any premises.
According to the latest information, cafes, bars, pubs and restaurants will continue to remain open – but no two households should visit these public places together.
Different households are also banned from mixing in gardens.
People can, however, continue to meet with their ‘support bubbles’.
Anyone who lives alone or with dependent children (aged under 18) is permitted to be in a support bubble with another household.
Can I go to work?
As for work, nothing has changed.
The Government stated: “People living inside and outside of this area can continue to travel in and out for work” but social distancing guidelines must be adhered to.
I’m shielding; do I need to continue?
Originally, shielding guidance was set to end on 1 August.
However, the Government has now said that people should continue to shield in “Blackburn with Darwen in the North West and other local affected areas across England where shielding continues.”
Can funerals and weddings in Manchester still go ahead?
These types of gatherings are permitted to continue.
No more than 30 people should attend a marriage ceremony or funeral.
For weddings, any congregation after the ceremony “should involve no more than two households in any location or, if outdoors, up to six people from different households.”
Can I share a car with people outside my household?
The Government is discouraging this.
However, if car-sharing is necessary, drivers should thoroughly clean their vehicles before and after each trip, open the windows, avoid carrying different passengers, and ensure everyone inside wears face masks.
Can I still visit a place of worship?
This is allowed, but you must socially distance from people outside of your household and wear a face mask if closer than 2m apart.
The Health Secretary said these actions had been taken with “a heavy heart”.
“We’re constantly looking at the latest data on the spread of coronavirus, and unfortunately we’ve seen an increasing rate of transmission in parts of Northern England,” Mr. Hancock explained.
“We’ve been working with local leaders across the region, and today I chaired a meeting of the Local Action Gold Committee. Based on the data, we decided that in Greater Manchester, parts of West Yorkshire and East Lancashire we need to take immediate action to keep people safe.
Andy Burnham said: “The picture in Greater Manchester has changed over the past 7 days.
“We now have a rising rate in 9 out of 10 boroughs.
“We had concluded ourselves that something needed to be done.”
He also called on residents to “protect one another” by observing the new requirements.
“They will be reviewed weekly; meaning the more we stick to them, the quicker they will be removed,” the Mayor commented.
This Manchester restaurant serves an all-vegan roast with ‘meat’ and all the trimmings
A Manchester vegan restaurant is serving an all-vegan roast with mock ‘meat’ and all the trimmings, putting an ethical twist on the British Sunday classic.Keen to see if it’s worth the hype, I took a trip down to try it out for myself – and left feeling pretty impressed.
Not being a vegan personally, I enlisted the help of two friends of the plant-powered persuasion to accompany me to get a real feel for every option.
Suffice it to say, it was a success and, whilst I won’t be converting to veganism any time soon, it’s nice to know that there are options out there for when I feel like being ‘good’.
With three different roast choices on offer, Wholesome Junkies is the first restaurant in the city centre to venture past the usual vegan choices of mushroom Wellington and roasted squash and go all-out with a variety of mock meat options.
Meats have been created in partnership with Liverpool vegan brand CB Sushi, using their mock beef and turkey joints to give vegans the feeling of a ‘proper’ roast.
Think glazed ‘turkey’ filled with stuffing, medallions of ‘beef’ and crispy deep-fried oyster mushrooms, all served with lashings of onion gravy, ‘buttered’ seasonal greens, glazed carrots and parsnips, deep-fried stuffing balls, crispy roasties and fluffy Yorkshire puddings created by Mabel’s.
Having tried all three, I have to say that my favourite was the turkey. It’s actually my least favourite meat to eat, so it was something of a surprise to find I enjoyed the vegan version much more than the real thing.
The texture was spot on, and there was none of the dryness you typically associate with the bird. Washed down with a pint of locally-brewed Cloudwater Fuzzy Hazy Pale Ale, it absolutely hit the spot.
Coming in a close second was the deep-fried oyster mushroom roast, which was so packed with flavour that it almost felt like I was eating fried chicken with my Sunday dinner.
As for the beef, it didn’t really do it for me – tasting more of herbs than red meat, but then, I don’t suppose there are many vegans queueing up the block for a bloody meat substitute.
Wholesome Junkies has long been a favourite with Manchester vegans. First shooting to fame in 2018 with an appearance on BBC2’s Million Pound Menu, owner Chelsea appeared on the show to ask for 95,000 to open her own vegan junk food restaurant.
Prior to that, she’d been running her Wholesome Junkies concept as a street food pop-up at sites like Grub and Ancoats General Store.
Whilst her bid to impress the BBC judges was not successful at the time, the TV appearance put her on the map and within a year she had her own Arndale market stall.
Fast forward a few more, and in 2022 she opened her first bricks and mortar restaurant – taking over the former Umezushi site at 4 Mirabel Street.
Since moving in, she’s completely transformed it: decking it out in bright colours and filling every corner with quirky little ornaments and decorations.
Strings of fairy lights, hanging mushrooms and frames filled with pictures from local artists all make the small space feel incredibly warm and welcoming – and our visit the restaurant was absolutely packed.
At a time when so many vegan restaurants seem to be closing, it was an absolute joy to see so many bums on seats during our visit.
Veganuary might almost be over, but if you’re a vegan – or simply just trying to cut down on your meat consumption – it’s definitely worth giving this one a go.
Feature image – The Manc Eats
Meet the couple who quit their jobs to sell sandwiches from their Northern Quarter flat
If you’re a fan of things in bread (and honestly, who isn’t) then there’s a new Italian sandwich dealer in town that you absolutely need to get down your neck.
Serving up some of the best butties we’ve had in a long time, it’s called Ad Maiora and is being run by a couple who are making absolutely everything out of a kitchen in their little Manchester flat.
Collected from a nondescript door on a Norther Quarter back street, we’re talking giant focaccia-style loaves generously stuffed with premium ingredients like ‘nduja, spicy Tuscan sausage, smoked scamorza, mortadella, burrata and red pesto.
The brainchild of Sardinian couple Daniela Steri and Enrico Pinna, all of their sandwiches are made using only top quality Italian ingredients with a total of nine different options to choose from.
From the vegan-friendly La Nonna (Italian hummus, roasted aubergine, olives, sundried tomatoes and rocket) to a huge array of different cheesy and meaty delights, fillings include parma ham, gorgonzola DOP, truffled brie, Milano salami and crumbled pistachios.
Their bread is baked freshly by hand each morning using a tiny domestic oven, and they’re already baking up to 60 loaves of schiacciata (a traditional Tuscan flatbread) a day to keep up with the demand – putting just four in the oven at a time, over and over again.
On our visit, the pair tell us that they moved over from Sardinia to the UK six years ago and first tried living in London for a year (they say they hated it) before making the move up to Manchester.
In that time, they say they’ve fallen in love with the city of Manchester and with the Northern Quarter in particular.
Inspired by the brilliant food scene in their area, two months ago they both decided to pack in their jobs and pursue their own business instead – and haven’t looked back since.
Previously, Daniela tells us she’d worked at hotel Dakota in housekeeping for three years whilst her partner, Enrico, had been employed at Ezra and Gil. Despite their hospitality experience, though, neither of them had made bread before.
That doesn’t seem to be holding them back, though, and demand for their sandwiches is rocketing as word spreads about the new homemade Italian butties for sale on a Manchester backstreet.