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Homeless Factory

21st May 2019

A not-for-profit "social enterprise lifestyle space", is set to open in the former Armstrongs furniture warehouse on Adair Street, Ancoats, this summer with a mission to end homelessness across Greater Manchester.


The brainchild of Oli Wilson, Peacemeal is recruiting staff who have experienced homelessness, providing a platform for individuals to reconnect with a normal life.


The son of the late Factory Records founder and Manchester icon, Anthony Wilson, said "Rough sleeping on the streets of Manchester has recently been described as a humanitarian crisis. As Manchester witnesses another renaissance, I knew there was something that this City could do, especially through our thriving food and cultural scene. We aim to support Andy Burnham’s homelessness initiative, fitting into his ‘four R’s providing the final step of ‘reconnection’ through supported employment. We’re also approaching this in a holistic fashion, making sure music and arts play a central role in everything we do."


Set across three floors, the space will include an artisan bakery and restaurant, with a menu curated by DJ restauranteur Luke "Unabomber" Cowdrey. It will serve fresh, locally sourced, nutritious soul food, including fresh pastries and homemade bread, artisan coffee, seasonal salads and sandwiches. A key addition to the food offering will be the £5 ‘holy grail’ one pot soup and bread menu, available throughout the day with guest recipes from top chefs around the North.


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The all-day eatery will transform into a late-night venue, seeing DJs take over the space at night, whilst the second floor will provide a studio space dedicated entirely to wellness, offering yoga and meditation classes free of charge.


The rooftop space will be transformed into an urban farm, working with rehabilitated prison leavers and the homeless, who will assist in growing produce for the kitchen - part of a study by Queen's University Belfast into the psychological benefits of urban farming.


Working with key Manchester charities from the Manchester Homelessness Partnership such as Booth Centre and Mustard Tree, a quarter of Peacemeal's 18 staff will have experienced homelessness and they aim to recruit individuals who have completed job workshops and kitchen courses, have keys to their first home, and need the final step in securing a job. An Employment Academy will be created to support them fulfil their positions in the bakery, back and front of house, as well as a delivery service connecting to businesses across the city centre.


All profits generated at Peacemeal will be donated to various charity and community projects across the city. The project has a two year lease before the building will be demolished.


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