26 August 2020

Office leasing guide – Manchester

Manchester is a lively city that’s full of personality. With a fantastic shopping scene, world-class restaurants and a reputation as one of the key commercial centres in northern England, it’s understandably a very popular place to live, work and visit. Every street offers something unique, and its unforgettable character has seen it land a place in Time Out’s 15 best cities in the world in 2019.

Manchester was once a powerhouse of industry but is now known for its eclectic nightlife scene, beautiful Victorian libraries, and of course, its premier league football teams. But the major cultural hub has even more to offer business owners. It’s considered the commercial and retail capital of north west England and has the UK’s second largest economy, making Manchester a very attractive place to do business.

It has many of the perks of the capital, including a constantly evolving skyline, multicultural population and a well-developed transport network, but they come at a more affordable cost. Over 100,000 students reside in Manchester and attend one of its five universities, so it won’t be hard to find graduates with impressive academic backgrounds too.

If you’re thinking about leasing office space in Manchester, here’s everything you need to know about the city.

Offices to rent in Manchester

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Key business areas

Manchester’s central business district is Spinningfields. The £1.5 billion project has given birth to a new financial community and lively restaurant scene. With many big names like HSBC, Barclays, Deloitte and PWC based there, some describe the area as the ‘Canary Wharf of the North.’

The regeneration of Salford Quays and the rise of MediaCityUK now means that BBC, ITV and a whole host of other creative businesses call the area home. The area is bursting with high quality facilities like creative studios and modern workspaces.

Nine miles south of the city centre and adjacent to Manchester Airport you will find Manchester Business Park. It’s made up of four HQ office buildings that offer almost 190,000 sq ft of Grade A office accommodation. Carrington Business Park also offers low cost office space and conferencing rooms.

Travel and transport in Manchester

Manchester has four main railway stationsThe four stations are Piccadilly, Victoria, Oxford Road and Deansgate. Manchester Piccadilly station is the largest, with 14 platforms. You can catch the train to London in just over two hours.

Metrolink is Manchester’s convenient tram serviceTo get around Greater Manchester, taking the tram is one of the quickest options. There are seven lines operating and they connect the city centre to Manchester Airport, MediaCityUK, as well as many other key destinations.

Manchester is well-connected by bus There are two bus interchanges in the city centre, Manchester Piccadilly bus station and Shudehill Interchange. From there, you can catch a local bus service to one of the 10 Greater Manchester boroughs, as well as Lancashire, Cheshire, Yorkshire and Derbyshire.

There are great cycle routes in Manchester If you’re a keen cyclist, you can make the most of the five main cycle routes in Manchester. These are.

  • Trans Pennine Trail
  • Rochdale Canal Cycle route
  • Fallowfield Loop
  • City Centre to Manchester Airport Cycling route
  • Manchester Airport Orbital Cycleway

Business amenities nearby

There are lots of luxurious hotels in Manchester

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Top places to grab some lunch

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The best bars and pubs

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There are lots of great meeting spaces

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Other amenities

Manchester is a retail-lover’s paradise

The central retail district has plenty for those who love to shop till they drop. The area has been massively redeveloped and includes the large shopping centre, Manchester Arndale as well as Market Street.

If you’re looking for high-end retail brands, you can head to nearby King Street. The Trafford Centre is also five miles west of the centre and has around 150 stores to browse. The Northern Quarter is an up-and-coming, alternative area with lots of trendy bars, art galleries, organic eateries, and local markets. It’s also the go-to destination for vintage clothing and quirky gift items.

Handy facilities

There are plenty of gyms in Manchester, including Crossfit clubs, upmarket FORM, affordable PureGym and Bannatyne Health Club if you need some extra TLC after a busy day.

If you’re visiting for meetings, you can use spaces like Chamber Space, thestudio and Friends’ Meeting house, among many, many others, to host your guests. And when the day is done, you can catch a show at The Lowry, The Palace Theatre or The Octagon Theatre, if cutting-edge arts are your thing.

Key office occupiers

  • First TransPennine Express
  • The Co-operative Group
  • ITV Granada Television and ITV Studios
  • Umbro
  • Pretty Little Thing

Offices to rent in Manchester

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Key agents in the area

  • Avison Young
  • Cushman & Wakefield
  • CBRE
  • Colliers International
  • Savills 

Interesting facts about this area

Charles Rolls and Henry Royce first met in 1904 in the iconic Midland Hotel in the city’s centre and two years later, luxe British brand Rolls-Royce was formed.

The first computer to have a stored memory and programme was developed at Manchester University in 1948. A replica of ‘Baby’, which is credited with paving the way for modern computers, can be seen at the Museum of Science and Industry.

Iconic feminist figure Emmeline Pankhurst was born in Manchester in 1903 and founded the Women’s Social and Political Union in the city.

Vegetarianism first emerged in the Manchester area, after Reverend William Cowherd began preaching the idea in his sermons in 1809. You’ll find headquarters of The Vegetarian Society in Salford, where you can take a cookery course covering all things veggie.

The world’s first professional football league was set up at the city’s Royal Hotel. Now, two of the world’s best and biggest football clubs exist in Manchester – Manchester United and Manchester City.