PIRATE PARTY… Place North West’s annual shindig Place Party welcomed more than 700 property professionals to the Kimpton in Manchester for a night of dancing, fun and games. Sponsors GIA Consulting provided a Pop-up Pirate for each table and it is fair to say they were a hit. No more so than on Close Brothers Property Finance’s table where things got competitive. The unlucky party whose sword sent the pirate flying had to take themselves off to the bar to buy a round for the whole table.


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VOICEOVER… This weekend sees another dreaded international break disrupt the rampant flow of the Premier League. Those not interested in watching England crush Andorra might rather escape into a world of virtual football via videogame Fifa22, which came out this week. The Fifa videogame series also happens to have regularly featured a voice familiar to Manchester’s law community. Dominic Walker, media, data, reputation management & sports law solicitor at JMW, has lent his vocal cords to game developer EA for the past five editions of the game – you’ll recognise his dulcet tones as one of the stadium announcers.

Michael Gove, P. MHCLG

Credit: MHCLG Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

GOVE IT A REST… The new levelling up minister didn’t stick around long when he gave a speech at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester on Monday. A 10-minute talk that commentators slammed for lacking substance featured a healthy dose of attempted humour. “Dance like nobody is watching,” Michael Gove began, as the strains of his chosen walk-on music – ABBA’s Dancing Queen – faded. This was, of course, a reference to now-infamous photos of the politician cutting a rug at an Aberdeen nightclub in August. Gove continued: “I know that many people have recently been asked why a middle-aged man spent more than an hour, non-stop, unleashing a series of wildly uncoordinated gestures in front of a bewildered audience, who were left wondering if this was some sort of bizarre attempt to go back to the 80s. But enough about Keir Starmer’s conference speech.” Perhaps by highlighting the length of the opposition leader’s speech the previous week, he was trying to draw attention away from the brevity of his own. 

Pretty Little Thing Manchester Map

Credit: via Rise at Seven

FASHION FAUX PAS… In a bid to boost its profile, fashion brand Pretty Little Thing has got a touch confused. PLT has sent a request to Manchester City Council in a bid to change the name of Unicorn Street in Eccles to Pretty Little Unicorn Street. Apart from the nauseating nature of the request, there is another problem: Eccles is in Salford. The proposed name change was put forward so that PLT could have a “physical and permanent presence in the city in which it was born”. Nice try.     

Chris Pincher

Credit: Place North West

DELUXE… Delegates attending the Tory party conference in Manchester this week were treated to the recurring questions ‘what is levelling up’ and ‘how do you pronounce the new department that Michael Gove heads’. Chris Pincher, housing minister, told guests at a fringe event organised by Lexington and JLL that it’s simple, the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities abbreviates phonetically to ‘Deluxe’. We hope the eagerly awaited policies live up to the hype, if and when they arrive. 

Nexus Planning Manchester, Tree Planting 2

Nexus Planning planted trees in Tameside. Credit: Nexus Planning

GOING GREEN… Staff at Nexus Planning have been getting hands dirty over the past few weeks, first with a beach clean at Crosby two weeks ago and then with tree planting today. The trees are being planted at Matley in Tameside as part of the City of Trees initiative, which wants to plant a tree for every Greater Manchester citizen. So far, more than half a million trees have been planted. Good work!

Chester Northgate Planning Application June 2019 4

Credit: via planning documents

NAME GAME… Do you want to play a key role in the future of Chester city centre? The local council is inviting residents to name the new square and arcade at Chester Northgate. In order to weed out any unhelpful suggestions from the public – we all remember Boaty McBoatface – the council has sensibly proffered its own list of suggestions to choose from. The options for the square are Coachworks Arcade, Via Victrix, Minerva Arcade and Holme’s Arcade. The arcade will be named either The Castrum, Exchange Square, The Market Garden or Fortress Square. Learn more about the list of potential names. 

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