In late October 2010 whispers spread around Manchester about the possibility of another OK Cafe. For some of us this was a new concept, part of Manchester’s past which we knew nothing of, for others it brought back memories of fun times, good friends and the wonders of having a radical, non-commerical space in the city. Either way, it roused excitement in all of us, and by the start of November a collective had begun meeting regularly with it’s minds set on rekindling and recreating the OKasional Cafes once more.
Just five weeks later, after an 8 year absence, the eleventh OKasional Cafe opened on the 3rd December 2010 at The Lord Nelson Pub on corner of Newton Street and Great Ancoats Street. People from across the city converged on the space for the afternoon and the old pub was given a fresh lick of paint, a handful of new blackboards and injected with lots of radical energy and enthusiasm. For three weeks the space became Manchester’s radical hub, hosting workshops, poetry, music, meetings and daily vegan meals.
Since then the Café has been all over, giving everyone a taste of how much the community benefits from a non-commerical, volunteer led, radical space in the city. The sites we’ve opened include Castlefields, a former information centre re-imagined and transformed into a radical hub for Manchester, an abandoned residential home in Fallowfield, and more recently the Gamecock Pub in Hulme.
A massive thank you to everyone who has come down to the Cafe, used the space, ran workshops, cooked, cleaned, painted and made it what it was!
It’s been a while since the Gamecock so watch this space for a Café popping up soon…
OK Café Crew