A FASHIONABLY LONG WEEKEND ALL ALONG MANCHESTER’S MOST ICONIC, HISTORIC SHOPPING STREET. FEATURING: LIVE MUSIC, GOODIE BAGS AND FREE GIFTS, LAWN GAMES, FIZZ AND NIBBLES, A HERITAGE TRAIL, PROSECCO POP-UPS, BEAUTY BARS – AND EVENTS AND OFFERS FROM OVER 50 OF THE BIGGEST NAMES IN SHOPPING, FOOD AND DRINK.
SPRING MAY BANK HOLIDAY. MANCHESTER CITY CENTRE.
Enjoy boules, croquet, giant chess and swingball for the kids (and big kids).
Saturday 28 May
11am: Young Pilgrims
The jazz and swing band kick start celebrations with a travelling music parade down King Street
1940s style girl band
6pm-8pm: The Rubber Duck Orchestra
Rawcus folk and jazz band
Sunday 29 May
12pm-2pm: Helen Mayer
Singer and accordionist
2pm-4pm: Mat Walklate and Paolo Fusini
4pm-6pm: DJ – Thom Docking (Drunk At Vogue)
Soul and disco
6pm-8pm: Rioghnach Connolly and Ellis Davis
Celtic influenced jazz and blues
Monday 30 May
12pm-2pm: Jordan Harding-Pointon and Kerry Firth
2pm-4pm: Cupid’s Bow
4pm-6pm: DJ – Thom Docking (Drunk At Vogue)
Soul and disco
World Jazz trio featuring Matt Nickson on Saxophone
Norther Quarter Florist and Dig the City Gold Award winner David Jayet-Laraffe, Frog Flowers, brings his amazing artistic floral designs to King Street, brightening up the lamposts on the top of King Street and bringing a touch of the English country garden to our bandstand. You can pick up a bouquet of your own from his pop up shop in the old King Street telephone box near St Ann’s Passage.
A BBQ and bar are laid on throughout the festival, sponsored by Peroni, Diageo and Britvic. Expect classic burgers, steak and ribs served up alongside some of the Grill’s most popular summer cocktails, ice-cold Peroni and soft drinks.
Sign up to the Grill’s social competition for a chance to win a 3-course meal with wine (and an overnight stay at the King Street Townhouse!) – simply post a picture of yourself at the Grill on the Alley over the festival weekend and tag it @grillmanc and #thegrillonthealley to be in the running.
Jonathan Schofield takes you on a tour of King Street and the surrounding streets, delving into the area’s heritage and shining a light on the buildings and people who have made King Street the King of Streets in Manchester, from its years as the centre of the city’s theatreland to its modern retail heyday.
Meet at Virgin Money Lounge every day 1pm for this free tour. No booking is required, strictly first come first served, numbers are limited.
Volunteers from Manchester Histories Festival will be on hand between 11am-2pm daily to talk to visitors about the histories and heritage of King Street and Manchester Histories Festival (3-12 June). Pick up information about Manchester histories Festival, find out more about the Heritage Window Project and the Manchester Celebration.
Take a tour around the history of King Street as we collaborate with Manchester Histories Festival to draw out this hidden heritage of one of Manchester’s most iconic streets. Keep an eye out for a series of 16 boards around the festival with photos, facts, drawings and stories about the people and places that made King Street what it is today.
And if that piques your interest why not check out the amazing events coming up at Manchester Histories Festival 3-12 June www.manchesterhistoriesfestival.org.uk.
Bravissimo offers a wide choice of stylish, supportive lingerie and swimwear in D-L cup, and a unique range of clothing designed especially to fit and flatter women with bigger busts. During the festival, pop by for a free fitting and enjoy a glass of prosecco at the same time – and be uplifted in every sense!
The home of florals on the high street joins the festival fun with an in-store craft session every day over the Bank Holiday (11am-5pm Saturday-Monday, while stock lasts). Make your own windmill to take home with you in a workshop that’s suitable for all ages or, if you’re just passing through, be sure to pick up a helium balloon.
Create your own momento of the weekend with Diesel’s in-store photo booth, enjoy their DJ, pick up a free gift with your purchases . Plus there’s a mystery prize on offer over the weekend…
Unmissable offers! Enjoy 20% off the entire Spring Summer 2016 Menswear Collection, plus enter an in-store competition for the chance to win a £250 gift voucher. Simply stop by the King Street store, join the mailing list and you’ll automatically be entered into the draw*.
*Terms and conditions apply. No purchase necessary. Entry to the competition available in Diverso King Street, Manchester store only from 9.30am Saturday 28 May 2016 until 5pm Sunday 29 May 2016. No more than one entry per household. The winner will be chosen at random on 30th May 2016. The winner will be notified within 7 days of closing date using the email address supplied, and by entering the competition agrees to have his/her name published as the winner by Diverso mail-shot or Diverso social media channels (@diversolondon). If the prize is not claimed within 21 days of notification, another prize-winner will be drawn and the original prize-winner will forfeit the prize. No cash or other alternatives. Diverso reserves the right to withdraw this offer at any time
This is an offer you’ll not want to miss: enjoy 20% off your purchase during the festival*.
*Offer valid in DKNY Manchester boutique for first time customers only. Valid 28 -30 May 2016. Cannot be combined with any other discounts or offers. Not valid on sale merchandise. Some exceptions may apply. See store for details.
With a mixologist on hand to create delicious Old English themed cocktails*, a lucky dip containing selected gift vouchers to spend in store, plus a 10% discount all Bank Holiday long, Hawes & Curtis mark the festival with both fashion and fun.
This year, Hobbs Manchester will celebrate its first birthday at the King Street festival. As part of this exciting celebration, Hobbs is running an exclusive gifting event, giving away a free illustrated tote bag to the first 100 customers who spend over £50. Plus, you can enter to win a luxury £250 personal styling experience. Ask in-store for more details.
Step back to the 1940s at House of Fraser with complimentary makeovers and hair styling. Plus there’s up to 40% off across the store at the Big Brand Event, and if that’s not enough enjoy free coffee each morning during the King Street Festival.
Join Jigsaw in celebrating their British journey in style with specially designed window display, mini treats, local musicians from 1pm-2pm and fragrance samples 2pm-3pm on Saturday.
Also be pampered in style and enjoy a free personal shopping experience with their wonderful team.
Plus on Saturday from 11am-4pm the talented team from Trevor Sorbie will be offering free hair transformations across the decades, from the 1970s to current day.
Enjoy 25% off at Karen Millen and find your perfect outfit for events season over the weekend. Plus you can dip into the store’s complimentary styling sessions, refreshments – and receive an exclusive gift with purchases over £200.
Enjoy complimentary drinks and canapés on Saturday as Gusto bring a pop-up in store, or check out jewellery and accessories from the Stella and Dot pop-up. On Sunday, an in-store psychic adds an unusual twist; there’s a complimentary reading on offer with every purchase.
To celebrate the King Street Festival Mint Velvet is offering a free personal shopping service in-store, plus complimentary Pimms and cookies and a gift when you spend over £175.
Stressed? Busy? Try a complimentary express massage taster and mini facial at Neal’s Yard over the festival weekend, or look out for a free goodie bag* stuffed with samples of best-selling products, superfood tasters and smoothies – and the chance to win a beautiful hamper bursting with Neal’s Yard Remedies goodies**.
*Terms and conditions apply. No purchase necessary. Available in Neal’s Yard Remedies Manchester King Street store only from 9.30am Saturday 28 May 2016 until 6pm Monday 30 May 2016. No cash or other alternatives. One goodie bag per customer. While stocks last. Neal’s Yard Remedies reserve the right to withdraw this offer at any time. **Terms and conditions apply. No purchase necessary. Entry to the competition available in Neal’s Yard Remedies Manchester King Street store only from 9.30am Saturday 28 May 2016 until 6pm Monday 30 May 2016. No more than one entry per household. The winner will be chosen at random on 31 May 2016. The winner will be notified within 21 days of closing date using the email address supplied. The name of the winner is available on request. If the prize is not claimed within 21 days of notification, another prize winner will be drawn and the original prize winner will forfeit the prize. No cash or other alternatives. Neal’s Yard Remedies reserve the right to withdraw this offer at any time.
Join the Phase Eight team in store for their three-day gift voucher giveaway – there’s a £50 voucher to be won. Or help yourself to sweets and treats while you browse their fabulous new SS16 collection.
Enjoy an in-store DJ and drinks on Saturday and Sunday, plus a brilliant 20% discount (not to be used in conjunction with any other offers).
Hop into Space NK for complimentary mini makeovers, on offer all weekend.
Head to the Body Shop for a special skin consultation or makeover; a 30-minute appointment where you can discuss your skin needs and try some of the Body Shop’s latest products.
The Pen Shop has laid on two festival competitions to try your hand at. Spot the crown and win a Cross Franklin Covey ball pen (worth £10; 25 to give away), or guess the number of ink cartridges in the jar and win a Waterman Expert fountain and ball pen set (worth £210).
Relax in style at the White Company, with sparkling wine on offer for customers, complimentary hand massages and 10% off full-price items for anyone joining the mailing list over the festival weekend
Take part in the in-store raffle that’s being run in support of local charity, the Wood Street Mission, or refuel with a free takeaway coffee (or ice tea if the sun shines!). There’s also 15% off purchases for those signing up to the White Stuff’s mailing list.
Sharpen up for the summer season with Thomas Pink’s festival offer: 20% off the Team GB Made by Pink Collection on Saturday and Sunday.
With its urban-chic atmosphere, in-salon bar and pampering treatments the Manchester Trevor Sorbie salon offers the perfect place to relax, refresh and discover hairstyling at its best. The team can be timelessly classic or daringly creative to suit individual clients, led by Salon Manager Nicola Bond and includes Mai Ha, North Western Hairdresser of the Year Finalist and Vincent Allenby, stylist to the stars.
Above all, the Manchester salon is a celebration of Northern charm. This irresistible warmth and friendliness has been rewarded with a finalist’s place in the British Hairdressing Business Salon Team of the Year and Customer Care Awards, and their award of Trevor Sorbie Team of the Year 2014.
On Saturday 30 May, 11am-4pm the Trevor Sorbie team will be offering free hair transformations across the decades, from the 1970s to current day. Head to Jigsaw on King Street for your hair makeover.
Pop into the Manchester salon over the weekend to pick up three of Vidal Sassoon’s favourite minis – free with the purchase of any Sassoon Professional product. Or if you’re looking for a colour refresh or to update your do for the summer, all new customers receive a £15 saving on bookings over the weekend (for pre-bookings only; quote “King Street Festival” at time of booking to receive discount).
Meet at Virgin Money Lounge every day 1pm for Jonathan Schofield’s free tour of King Street and the surrounding streets. Enjoy complimentary refreshments from the Lounge (Saturday and Sunday) before delving into the area’s heritage and shining a light on the buildings and people who have made King Street the King of Streets in Manchester, from its years as the centre of the city’s theatreland to its modern retail heyday.
No booking is required, strictly first come first served, numbers are limited.
Virgin Money Lounges are about more than money and banking – they are designed to be places where customers can relax and local communities come together. They are all part of Virgin’s ambition to be a very different kind of bank – one that makes everyone better off.
Here comes Peter Rabbit, on hand at Waterstones 12pm-2pm on Saturday 28 May to meet all of his young fans. At 2pm children’s book illustrator, Helen Hancocks leads a Super Storytime – perfect for children aged 3-7! Helen will read from How To Look After Your Human by Maggie Mayhem and Kim Sears (which she illustrated), before leading a themed crafting session. At 3pm on Sunday 29 May there’s another Storytime session, this time kicking off with a reading from Peppa Pig’s Best Friends.
To celebrate the King Street Festival Whistles will be giving away a complimentary canvas tote with the first 10 purchases each day on Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
This is a bar known for its spectacular cocktail menu, so it’s fitting that Arcane is running an informal Jim Beam cocktail class (2pm-4pm Sat) where you’ll get to sample the new Jim Beam Double Oak bourbon before taking part in a bourbon inspired cocktail school. On Sunday (2pm-4pm) there’s a champagne tasting event hosted by Master of Wine, Frances Bentley, while on Monday (2pm-4pm), take part in another informal cocktail school, this time focusing on the Scandinavian spirit Aquavit. All places are free but limited; secure your place by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org in advance.
Bem Brasil brings a taste of Brasil to the streets of Manchester via a very special festival deal. For the festival weekend only (12pm-6pm Saturday-Monday), enjoy six different premium cuts of meat and a non-alcoholic Classic Caipirinha for just £14.95. Plus brilliant Brazilian dancing!
Enjoy a specially created King Street cocktail at Browns, plus 25% off the total bill when dining from the á la carte menu (for pre-bookings only; quote “festival offer” at time of booking to receive discount).
Burger & Lobster head out onto the street with on-street lobster rolls and ice-cream sampling. Delicious!
Sunny? Dine al fresco at El Gato Negro, and enjoy a selection of drinks accompanied by charcuterie.
The Grill on the Alley has been serving up 28-day-aged steaks to Mancuians for almost 10 years, becoming a firm favourite in the city of Manchester. Serving no-nonsense food with a trusted formula of steak, seafood and cocktails; offering a mix of innovative dishes with comfortable favourites. With a drinks list to rival the city’s best cocktail bars, you’ll find their bartenders mixing, merging, shaking and stirring ingenious concoctions; from old school classics right through to new infusions and flavours.
Try antipasti from of the best restaurants in the city. Jamie’s will be handing out cured meats, cheeses, olives, pickles and much more for festival goers to try. Or sign up for gold club membership to receive more fantastic treats, tasters and prize draws every month (there’s even a special sign-up treat, so don’t miss out). Kids, meanwhile, will be ably entertained by a live pasta-making demo (1pm Sat) and special screenprinting sessions (11am-3pm Sun).
Keep an eye out for Daisy the cow, Miller and Carter’s bovine mascot. Daisy will be handing out gift bags, plus vouchers for free starters and desserts. There’ll also be samples of the store’s premium-graded beef, which is sourced from carefully selected cattle reared on sustainable British farms. Yum.
Get busy at Pizza Express with samples, a dough corner for kids (they can make their own pizzas all weekend) and a raffle in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support.
Quill will be extending their seating out onto the street and serving 2for1 on the specially created King Street punch across the whole weekend. Plus an extra special Sunday Jazz Club with live jazz and 2for1 drinks from 6pm on the Sunday.
There’s 20% off the menu, plus bite-sized canapés and drinks at a special festival cart all weekend.
This is a hotel that mixes history with modernity. This 19th-century Italian renaissance building has been lovingly restored and is now a “baby grand” hotel, each of its 40 bedrooms individually designed to the highest specification and the Townhouse itself offering one of the top stays in the city centre.
King Street is in the heart of Manchester city centre. Nearest Metrolink stops: Market Street, Exchange Square and Castlefield-Deansgate. Nearest bus interchange: Piccadilly Gardens. Nearest mainline train stations: Manchester Victoria and Manchester Piccadilly. Nearest car parks: NCP King Street West, Deansgate and Bridge Street. For general travel information please visit tfgm.com.
From the off, Manchester’s King Street had ideas above its designation. It has always been more than simply a street – though it actually began life as a square. St. James’ Square, lined with the fashionable homes of Manchester’s merchants, changed its name in 1745 as an act of solidarity with Bonnie Prince Charlie (the would-be king who’d just tried and failed to take the English crown).
Other names of that era did stick, each whispering of King Street’s past. Spring Gardens and Fountain Street are echoes of the natural springs whose water flowed for over 200 years. Concert Lane is all that remains of Manchester’s first theatre, Police Street a memory of the city’s law enforcers. Manchester’s original town hall was here, too, at the corner of Cross Street. That building is now lost, replaced by the pale Baroque opulence of the Lloyds building (now Zizzi). Its Grecian façade was saved, though, hefted into Heaton Park in 1912.
As Manchester grew, homes were cleared for the coming of the banks. The financial institutions that brought their HQs here in the 19th and 20th centuries set out to impress. Consider Jamie’s Italian. This magnificent, Edward Lutyens-designed building is the former Midland Bank; if anything has the knock ‘em dead charisma to match Jamie Oliver’s patented charm this building is it. The Prudential, Northern Rock and the Bank of England came too, as did others. Above Jamie’s, from the windows of Hotel Gotham’s Honey restaurant, you can see Neptune, naked but for a three-pronged trident. He is rather magnificent. Neptune stands atop Ship Canal House (home to Burger and Lobster); it’s one of 18 listed buildings nearby, testament to the ambition of Neptune’s masters. And their spending power.
Across the road, housing Agent Provocateur, is the Manchester Club. Its intricate Gothic frontage is no less interesting than the Vivienne Westwood store nearby. That sits at 41 Spring Gardens in the former National Provincial Bank, designed by celebrated Victorian architect, Alfred Waterhouse (of Natural History Museum fame). While this end of King Street was shaped by big business, and still contains stores for the likes of Belstaff and DKNY, the lower end has always felt more modest. Look up – the narrow shop fronts feature some sweet details: the frieze above Rapha’s bay window, the Georgian townhouse that is now Jack Wills, the black and white timbers that tower over the corner of Police Street, even the tiny, tiled St. Ann’s passage that leads past Hermés. They are architecturally eclectic and all the better for it.
King Street came into its own in the early 20th century, the high-end shops lending it the nickname the “Bond Street of the North”. The street has had its ups and downs since then, but an injection of energy (and cocktails) has come in the form of critically acclaimed El Gato Negro, cocktail bar Arcane, the aforementioned Honey and fine dining at Quill. Together with a mix of shops such as Jigsaw, Whistles and House of Fraser, it all points to a new future for King Street – and one that befits a street with such a majestic past.