Jump Studios

Jump Studios Reveals Plans for Boutique Manchester Food Market

September 11, 2020


A £1.2m street food market designed by London-based architects Jump Studios, a Populous company, has been approved for Barbirolli Square, Manchester.

The scheme, named Society, is the second location to be brought forward by the fast-growing start-up PopCity, which appointed Jump Studios to develop the plans following the success of its first street food development in Leeds. Launched in November 2018, Assembly Underground has transformed the former Carpe Diem nightclub in Leeds city centre into an underground street food market and event space.

Now, in Manchester, PopCity is taking over the site of the former Pitcher & Piano unit next to Bridgewater Hall – which has stood empty for the last ten years – Society will include five kitchens and two bars – offering craft beers by Hebden Bridge-based independent brewery Vocation – bringing a variety of offerings to the market.

The venue will provide 350 seats for the local community to enjoy food, drink and entertainment under one roof, and is set to generate approximately 40 jobs for the local area. Traders The Falafel Guys, Slap and Pickle Burgers and Manzoku Ramen are already confirmed as three of the five opening tenants.

The brand’s overarching values of authenticity, independence and quality are manifest in the scheme’s overall design, which takes characteristic cues from the existing Leeds venture but will employ local Mancunian influences. In doing so, the design will help PopCity to develop a family of exciting venues, each with its own unique twist. Jump Studios has integrated a mezzanine level into the existing building and an outdoor patio to activate the streetscape.

Simon Jordan, Co-Founder and Senior Principal at Jump Studios, said: “It has been a pleasure to work with Nick and Richard on this exciting project in one of the UK’s greatest cities. Lockdown has underlined how much people miss the opportunity to come together and enjoy good food, drink and entertainment. Society has been designed to offer all three in one space and represents a very positive development for Manchester’s hospitality sector and city centre economy.”

Nick Gregory, Director at PopCity, said: “We were very excited to be working Jump Studios to transform this great venue. Building on our values of independence, authenticity and quality, Society creates a high quality, welcoming, bar and street food offer serving customers throughout the day, evening and weekends to a backdrop of ambient music, combined with an evolving events programme of great independent music and other themed events. Society will offer a platform to local food independents that may not ordinarily be able to trade from such a high-profile location. We can’t wait to throw open the doors.”

Society is anticipating an opening in Autumn 2020. Jump Studios will continue to work with the expanding brand, with plans for an additional location, Union in Reading, already underway.


For further information, please contact:

ING Media · PR & Communications

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Lauren Teague



Jump Studios (a Populous company) is an award-winning architecture and interior design practice based in London. Encompassing retail, workspace, exhibition, brand experience, pop-up, restaurant and bar design, Jump Studios has established an impressive client list including Google, Nike, Rapha, Bloomberg, Saatchi & Saatchi and Starwood Hotels. For more information about Jump Studios visit www.jump-studios.com

PopCity is a start-up created by Nick Gregory and Richard Sweet, both from the south of England. They are two entrepreneurs professionally involved with catering and street food for many years who have watched with wonder as the scene flourished. Nick has a commercial property background, having designed and curated pop-up schemes over the past eight years. Richard had several businesses including a bar/restaurant and cafe and is also currently converting shipping containers for independent street food operators.