Chapel Street is Salford’s historic heart: laid back, spread out and under the radar. Running physically parallel to Deansgate, but contrasting with its urban straightness, architectural pomp and familiar brands, Chapel Street has the different counter-cultural feel of another city: still industrial, more casual, temporal. Chapel Street is at the centre of a £650m regeneration project that will see new housing, shops and cafes set up shop there.
At one end is Greengate Square, just over the Irwell from Manchester Cathedral. This was a spot reviled by the Victorians for being a dirty, knotted mass of industry and squalor; now it’s an elegant square with planting and fountains. You can grab a coffee at Grindsmith‘s eco pod espresso and enjoy the sun and view from the outdoor seating. Also good for coffee is creative, co-working space Honest Coffee further down Chapel Street, or Lupo Caffe Italiano, with its cheery yellow branding, homemade pastries and pasta dishes. Slick cocktail bar Corridor nearby is hard to find, but well worth the search.
Chapel Street is also has rich pickings culturally, with arts consultancy and contemporary art gallery The International 3, Islington Mill – a deceptively large complex of old industrial buildings that is home and workplace to a diverse range of artists and creatives – and the Working Class Movement Library, homage to Salford’s rich political history. Even the pubs are creative hubs; handsome Victorian gem The King’s Arms up Bloom Street boasts a stage space, while a number of the other boozers get caught up in Salford’s annual, and excellent, Sounds From the Other City music festival.