Plans are underway to launch the ‘first-of-its-kind’ lifestyle venue next year

Plans are underway to launch Canvas Manchester; a ‘first-of-its-kind’ lifestyle venue on Oxford Road.

Subject to planning permission, Canvas Manchester will open in the ongoing Circle Square development next year and feature three distinctive spaces; Canvas Kitchen (a restaurant), Canvas Club (a private members’ club) and Canvas Events (an events space).  

We are going to get through this pandemic, we’re going to get back on our feet and the city is going to get back on its feet

Open to the public seven days a week, from 7am to up to 4am, Canvas Kitchen will seat 100 people and sit on the ground floor alongside Canvas Club. This promises ‘a unique and affordable take on the private members club that will offer a premium day and night experience for the community at Circle Square.’

Both will be complemented by Canvas Events, a lively calendar of activity hosted in the subterranean 400-capacity live music and events space. Alongside a bi-weekly club and gig programme, visitors can expect health and wellbeing sessions, social activism, networking and workshops.

2020 08 05 Cgi Circle Square Canvas Manchester
Canvas Manchester promises live music and events plus a community space to work, dine and socialise

The project is spearheaded by BeSixth, music events and entertainment specialists known for the Pickle Factory and Oval Space in East London.    

Led by a highly experienced team, who collectively have launched or operated several iconic venues -including the Hammersmith Apollo, Shepherd’s Bush Empire, Brixton Academy, G-A-Y Manchester and the Ritz Manchester - it’s a comforting reminder that Manchester’s famed live music and cultural scene, currently ailing, will continue to evolve in a (hopefully) post-COVID world.

Chairman of BeSixth, Dean James, said: “With Canvas Manchester we want to introduce a brand new lifestyle concept that will bring people together and offer something new and exciting to those living and working in the city.

“I think people in Manchester understand that we are going to get through this pandemic, we’re going to get back on our feet and the city is going to get back on its feet. With its people, a rich and diverse cultural scene, Manchester was always going to be the first city we said yes to when we decided to invest outside of London but we didn’t think we would find anything like the site at Circle Square.”  

L R Dean James And Gavin Aldrich Be Sixth Smaller File
BeSixth chairman Dean James (left) and CEO Gavin Aldrich (right)

Circle Square is marketed as ‘a landmark new neighbourhood in the heart of Manchester’s Oxford Road Corridor innovation district; a diverse 2.4 million sq ft urban destination…where science, technology and the arts meet and mix to enable the extraordinary.’ 

A joint venture between Bruntwood SciTech and Vita Group, the development will provide over 1700 new homes (1100 of which will be student accommodation), two hotels, a multi-storey car park, 1.2 million sq ft of workspace and over 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space; including a variety of boutique retailers, restaurants, bars and cafes centred on Symphony Park, Manchester’s largest and newest city centre park.

Circle Square is already home to the re-launched Manchester Technology Centre, a specialist ‘incubator’ for start-ups and entrepreneurs focussing on data science and innovation, plus popular indie destination Hatch.

Construction is currently underway, with two thirds expected to be complete in 2020.

Bruntwood Circle Square
Circle Square is designed to attract Manchester’s entrepreneurial, academic and creative communities

MD of Bruntwood SciTech - Manchester, Tom Renn, said: “Our ambition for Circle Square was always to create a destination - a place that would bring people together morning, day and night and a place that would become part of the fabric of the city. Somewhere tourists and innovators would see as a must-visit when coming to Manchester. 

“With a cluster of over 40 digital and tech businesses, an incredible collection of indie retail and social dining operators at Hatch and with Manchester’s newest outdoor event space Symphony Park, we are starting to see the neighbourhood develop at a pace never seen before in a new neighbourhood in Manchester.

“Canvas Manchester is another step change for Circle Square. The commitment from BeSixth to move this forward is both a nod to Manchester’s rich history and is a sign of confidence in our city’s future cultural scene. The live music industry has understandably suffered as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, but where better to drive its resurgence than in ‘the city that thinks a table is for dancing on’?”

Canvas Manchester, which is subject to planning permission, will take 8800 sq ft across the ground and basement floors at No. 1 Circle Square and it is set to open in 2021. 

Find out more about Circle Square and Canvas Manchester on the website 

Read more: £2.25m emergency funding for music venues - but Manchester needs more, says council

Also: Manchester arts and culture - What’s reopening when?