Manchester’s Green Quarter and the streets of Cheetham Hill are two areas that often risk being overlooked – the former because it’s a newly-established district, the latter because of a reputation that’s fast becoming outdated. The Green Quarter’s parameters aren’t yet fully understood, the independent businesses that operate here not yet well documented; Cheetham Hill, meanwhile, no longer lacks restaurants and enticing venues. Manchester Jewish Museum, once thought of as marooned, is connected to the city by a parade of independents along Red Bank, and bolstered by its excellent near neighbours. From brewery taprooms to a hidden cinema and sprawling street food venue, read on to rediscover the Green Quarter and Cheetham Hill.

Manchester Jewish Museum

Image credit: Chris Payne

The Marble Arch, a traditional pub with an ornate interior featured on Channel 4’s It’s A Sin, is at the indefinite edge of the Green Quarter: over the road from the hinterland behind Wing Yip that might loosely be called Ancoats, it shares a street (or rather, quite a steep hill) with one of the handkerchiefs of green space in the city centre, Angel Meadow. This small, but very beautiful park has a fascinating history, and can more confidently be said to be part of the Green Quarter. It’s at the back of the curved Co-op building, with Sadler’s Cat – formerly The Pilcrow Pub, now rebranded and run by the award-winning Manchester brewery Cloudwater – running along one side of Sadler’s Yard beyond this. Under the railway line on the other side of Angel Meadow is bike repair specialist Pop Up Bikes, with Blackjack Brewing Co’s Brewtap also nearby: a suntrap in good weather, expect ad hoc seating and super friendly service here.

Duck under the railway line to find Runaway, another brewery with its own beer garden. The batting cages, bar and hotdogs at Base Bar can be found at the other end of the same street; decorated with neon graffiti, there’s a lively, all-American atmosphere inside. Leading under another railway bridge next to the venue is Red Bank, and the official start to Cheetham Hill. Along this vertiginous road is an enviable series of independent businesses, including yet another taproom at Beatnikz Republic Brewing Co. Here too is continental pasta and spätzle cafe The Spärrows, much-lauded by critics including Jay Rayner on its arrival to Manchester in 2019. Originally located close to Manchester Cathedral, the restaurant now occupies a beautifully converted railway arch and serves just about the best brownie in the city for seconds.

Street food venue GRUB occupies a large unit towards the top of Red Bank, joyfully decorated with street art and backed by a sprawling lot filled with outdoor tables. Open Wednesday to Sunday, when Europe’s first weekly vegan street food event is held at the venue, GRUB shares a building with Chapeltown Picture House, a 100-seat cinema space that screens cult films, documentaries, and classics of the genre. Also worth checking out on Red Bank are the award-winning gin experiences at the City of Manchester Distillery.


One of the city’s most incredible heritage venues, Manchester Jewish Museum, is under a ten-minute walk from here: having doubled in size following a £6m redevelopment, the museum and beautifully-restored synagogue now include a new gallery, café, shop and learning studio. It’s a destination in its own right, with an incredible story to tell. If you are in the area, however, it’s worth checking what’s on at music and arts venue The Yard, home to gigs, workspaces and with plans for future outdoor expansion into drinking and dining. Cheetham Hill is also home to the Irish World Heritage Centre, where there’s a full calendar of events and to the Museum of Transport, which documents Manchester’s public transport history – from horses to double-decker buses. No shortage of things to do in the area, then.

By Polly Checkland Harding, Freelance arts copywriter and journalist