Not your average retail therapy
So many of the stores are nestled within the textile-industry buildings of old. There’s a romantic, red-bricked feel to the area.
The independent, eclectic spirit here is also hugely appealing. You can pick up a cool vintage jacket or an amazing, one-of-a-kind piece of handcrafted jewellery. You’re forever unearthing hidden gems.
Aesthetically, it’s unique. Every wall feels infused with history, every shop-shutter is a canvas for street artists – which is why the area’s so popular with bloggers and photographers looking for cool backdrops.
In many ways, this area hasn’t changed – just grown. I’ve been visiting Affleck’s Palace indoor market – a Northern Quarter stalwart – since I was a moody teenager shopping for clothes that my parents wouldn’t approve of. And now I take my three-year-old daughter there for brunch!
Behind every small business in the Northern Quarter and Ancoats is a person wanting to share their story and their interpretation of what style means to them. This area is the true heart of the city.
My three must-visit shops
“This ultra-colourful boutique is a go-to spot for gift shopping. Perfect for quirky presents, homewares and accessories.”
“Vintage store Cow is trend-led and carefully curated. Designer labels without the hefty price tags!”
Ancoats General Store
“The neighbourhood corner-shop goes hipster. Everyday necessities mixed with artisan coffee and street food.”