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Escape to Freight Island is throwing one of Manchester’s first restriction-free parties

A huge lineup of favourite Manchester DJs in a series of back-to-back sets.

Hannah Starkie Hannah Starkie - 14th July 2021

Now we have the go-ahead that all current COVID-19 restrictions will be lifted on 19 July, venues are finally able to confirm their plans for the big day – including Escape to Freight Island. 

The huge former railway station venue at Mayfield Depot has revealed it’ll be putting on one of the city’s first restriction-free events – aptly titled ‘Let’s Start the Dance’.  

So, to help wave goodbye to restrictions and finally start dancing again, there’ll be a series of extra special one-off, back-to-back sets from some of Manchester’s most legendary DJs. 

From 5pm until midnight, there’ll be no less than 14 DJs spinning all the best feel-good house, disco, garage, and drum and bass tunes to soundtrack your post-lockdown mood. 

Featured on the night will be: 

  • Rich Reason b2b Chimpo 
  • P-RO Jones b2b Katbrownsugar 
  • DJ Paulette b2b Dave Haslam 
  • Jenna G b2b Mix-Stress 
  • Krysko b2b James Holroyd 
  • Gina Breeze b2b Will Tramp 
  • Unabombers b2b Tom Wainwright 

Hit&Run boss Rich Reason has hosted a number of more chilled out hip-hop fuelled Sit&Bun Sessions here over the past year, so he’s got the vibe well under control whatever the occasion.

Meanwhile, Mix-Stress and DJ Paulette are also familiar faces, having played countless times across the last couple of months. And not to mention there’ll be appearances from solid Manc faves Gina Breeze, Will Tramp and Jenna G.


So, it’s good to know we’re in safe hands here.

DJ Mix-Stress is stood being the DJ decks at Escape to Freight Island.
DJ Mix-Stress back behind the decks at Escape to Freight Island. Credit: @mix_stress/IG

Freight Island has provided the city with such a unique atmosphere over the last 12 months. And alongside a full (and free) music and arts programme, there’s been a selection of top-quality street food vendors and drinks on offer to keep everyone fed and watered.

The venue has proven a massive hit amongst socially-distanced drinkers since opening in July 2020. But now, customers will be able to experience Freight Island in a brand-new unrestricted way for the first time.  


Dan Morris, Managing Director of Escape to Freight Island, said: “We are proud to be preparing Manchester for one of the first restriction free parties happening on Monday 19 July at Escape to Freight Island. This will be a special gathering for everyone in attendance.  

“The setting of Freight Island is perfect – outdoor and overlooking the city as the sun sets, with sunny weather, great DJs and a rich diverse mix of people that Manchester is known for. It will be a beautiful moment, a special one-off event to celebrate.”

Tickets for Let’s Start the Dance are free but they are limited. Grab yours here before it’s too late. 

See you on the platform.  

Featured image: Escape to Freight Island