“We want you here with your friends having a good time”

All this week we’re celebrating Kampus in Manchester, a distinctive new neighbourhood filled with great people, more than 500 apartments to rent in an eclectic mix of buildings, independent eateries, drinking holes and shops all centred around lush gardens.

In our second in a series of Kampus-focused blog, we meet the operators bringing delicious new flavours to the menu – from pizzas, to pastries.

Here, their respective owners tell us more about their unique offering and why they love being a part of the city’s newest neighbourhood.

Kate Askham is general manager at Pollen. Manchester’s best loved bakery, the team established a great reputation from its original base in Ancoats, before expanding to Kampus last year.

“Our second Pollen home was always going to be important. It was a big step as we grew our business, building on a hard-earned reputation in Ancoats in the north east of the city.

“It’s a bigger space than Ancoats, and one which invites our customers to experience more of Pollen – be that the large counter on arrival, from which you can select our delicious cakes and drinks, through to the large pastry kitchen at the back of the venue – an intentionally exposed facility that helps the customer feel like they’re part of the process.

“The layout was the best use of L-shaped floorplate, a space filled with bench seating and various seating areas for a relaxed experience.

“Our customers like it, our colleagues like it, and we’ve loved getting to know more of the likeminded independent operators moving to Kampus as they learn more about our offering too.  We love getting to know each other and supporting each other.”

Follow Pollen on social media here to keep up to date with a changing brunch menu using locally-sourced, seasonal ingredients. The team will also be hosting special offers and events for Pride 2023.

Owain Williams and his team opened their doors at Madre just days ago, bringing the taste of Mexico City to Manchester. Here he tells us about Kampus’ role in his new restaurant journey.

“It’s been 10 insane days since we opened at Kampus. It’s amazing and we can’t wait to establish ourselves as a part of this community.

“We’ve been operating in Liverpool for years now and knew it was time to head down the M62 to set ourselves up in Manchester.  Our Liverpool restaurant is in a listed building, and we were keen for something similar, something that would have a mix of original features, adding in vibrant colour and branding – a nod again to the Mexican theme.

“Kampus is more than just the aesthetics though and I already feel like we’re a part of this neighbourhood – its uniqueness drew us in from the outset. I love being surrounded by independent operators who have a shared goal; I love meeting the residents and getting to know them already.

“We’re looking forward to growing our brand here and, while Manchester may not capture Mexico’s weather, I think our home at Kampus will at least give people its vibe!”

Madre will host a series of outdoor acoustic events this summer. Follow them here for all the details.

Antonia Lallement looks after sales and events at Nell’s – a social pizza bar encouraging Kampus residents and visitors alike to get their friends around a table for a drink and a slice. Here, she tells us more about the New York-inspired offering.

“While we’re enjoying the good times now, it was equally as challenging as exciting when we first brought Nell’s to Kampus.

“We were one of the first operators here, 18 months ago, giving us an interesting placemaking opportunity and allowing us to fly the flag for our Nell’s concept. Our brand was born from a love of pizza and the joy of making, and baking by hand. We want to offer a contrast to the more commonly found Neapolitan style pizzas at other restaurant, bringing diversity and different flavours, all topped with locally-sourced produce and a schedule of great events and music that mirror Kampus’ vibe.

“You can’t not love it here. The gardens are my favourite part – while rare for a city centre it doubles our space in the summer. Inside, there’s a raw, industrial aesthetic inspired by New York – all punctuated with bold and bright graphics and posters.

“It’s a distinct look but sets the scene for what we’re about – we’re a bar that serves big pizzas and we just want you in here with your friends having a good time!”

Follow Nell’s on social for all of the details of their forthcoming events.