The Mann Island venture comes from the boss behind Ma Boyle’s

Next time you’re standing in front of a map (I know, I’m showing my age here) cast your eye over Nova Scotia in Canada and you’ll see some familiar sounding places. Liverpool, the River Mersey, Mount Pleasant, the Liverpool Hotel. No Liver Launderette, as far as I can see.

At the end of the 19th century, the Mann Island area in Liverpool was called Nova Scotia.

Liverpool Maritime Museum (this one, not across the ocean) tells us that the links between Liverpool and Canada go back to at least 1772, when Charles Dixon sailed from Liverpool in the Duke of York, to found a family dynasty in Nova Scotia. The plentiful timber available along the Canadian coast was a prime attraction - hence the port of Liverpool's Canada Dock.

Nova Scotia Mann Island From Irwell Place 1868 Liverpool City Libraries 2
Nova Scotia, Liverpool, painted by Herdman in 1868 Image: Herdman / Liverpool Record Office

At the end of the 19th century, the Mann Island area in Liverpool was a shanty-town called Nova Scotia, due to the off-loading of lumber laden ships from Canada's east coast. 

The area was made up of dwellings and businesses serving the huge ships when the city boomed as a trade destination. The dock served Canada and the lumber trade, twinning with Nova Scotia in Canada. Keep connecting the dots and there’s even a Mann Island in Ontario, Canada. 

It’s a fascinating connection and one which will be celebrated by a new restaurant and bar opening at Mann Island this year. Moving into the former & Company spot in the shadow of the Museum of Liverpool, the bar - named “Nova Scotia” - pays homage to the city’s maritime past.

Nova Scotia Mann Island Liverpool Ma Boyles Tempest
Mann Island today - Nova Scotia will move into the former &Company Image: PR

It’s the latest venture from the Ma Pub Group, led by Iain Hoskins, and follows on from the award-winning, Ma Boyle’s Alehouse and Eatery, and Tempest on Tithebarn which opened in May last year.

Iain says his third Liverpool site will utilise the extensive open-air drinking and dining space next to Canning Dock, as well as boasting a beautiful interior restaurant and bar serving great food and drinks. 

"We have a great relationship with the Mann Island landlords, RBH Properties, who are our landlords at Ma Boyle's,” said Iain.

“Mann Island is a perfect fit for us, operating two neighbouring bars locally we know the area very well. With our other two sites we've found the perfect balance appealing to the business district footfall, local residents and tourists - there really is something for everyone and we are looking forward to a fabulous spring and summer in the city.

Nova Scotia Murray Place To Mann Island 1868 Liverpool City Libraries 2
View from Murray Place to Mann Island in 1868 Image: Liverpool Record Office

“I’m fascinated by this part of Liverpool and the story of a forgotten dockside village that got swallowed up when the docks expanded. The new Mann Island building is an incredible addition to the waterfront. 

"I really like the idea of the juxtaposition of celebrating this old district that was replaced by then newer industries, now replaced in a new iconic building that trailblazed Liverpool's post millennium renaissance as a modern European destination city. 

“The recent public realm improvements to The Strand and the area around Mann Island and Three Graces are exceptional and was a massive factor in my decision to take on this site in what many would consider are challenging and risky times. 

"We have a world class waterfront and it's an absolute privilege to be able to open a restaurant here.”

Nova Scotia, Liverpool, opens from Thursday 2 June.

25a Mann Island, Liverpool, L3 1BP, open 9am – 9pm every day.

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