Jacinta Russell, a music graduate, has recently set up Taffeta Events, her own event, party and wedding planning company. In the second instalment of our new regular feature, she talks about her Altrincham.
My favourite pub
My friends and I were big fans of The American Bar in Hale until it closed recently – it’s a shame, I think it was a great place and had something for everyone. Sticking with Hale, I love the relatively new addition of Moose bar. The décor and feel is really unique and the size makes it quite an intimate affair, especially when they have live music playing.
I recently went to the opening weekend of Traders Tiki Bar in Goose Green and really enjoyed the experience. It’s a place that’s a little different from the norm, with their barrels for seats and exotic cocktails, and is a wonderful addition to the nightlife in Altrincham.
My favourite restaurant
If there’s one thing Altrincham has in abundance it’s restaurants, and I think we’re so lucky to have such a wide and varied selection. I’m a lover of Italian food so the likes of Coco’s, Scalini and Danilo’s really are the perfect places for me to go for a meal.
I was a judge for Veg Out Altrincham recently and had the opportunity to sample vegetarian dishes from a number of different restaurants in the town. I was really impressed with the offerings from both House and Istanbul Grill so I think they’ll definitely be next on my hit list!
My favourite coffee shop
I’m not really a coffee drinker so if I’m looking for a pit stop for a bit of an energy boost I like to drop into Y… McGregor on Stamford New Road. By their own admission, they provide ‘naturally healthy food’ but that doesn’t stop what they offer being delicious too – I’m particularly fond of their smoothies!
My favourite place for a walk
I think if you live in Altrincham then Dunham Massey really is the ultimate place to run, walk or stroll – it’s just so beautiful and I love the deer. We’re really lucky to have such a wonderful piece of National Trust land on our doorstep and the new visitor centre complete with shop and café is just brilliant. For a slightly quieter walk, I love to visit Devisdale and Denzell Gardens. The ornamental pond and colourful flowers are just gorgeous and I love the history surrounding the wonderful Denzell House.
In terms of independent shops, I really wish Altrincham had a bit more to offer, however, being a girly girl and loving clothes, I think Laundry Boutique is an absolute must to visit. My friends and I all love it and they have the most amazing, on-trend dresses, shoes and accessories at such affordable prices. Aside from clothes, I’m really excited to pop into the newly opened Hummingbird Flowers & Vintage Angel Design shop on Moss Lane (right). They’re two companies who have joined together after being in the Trader’s Outlet and the shop just looks so beautiful from the outside.
My favourite market stall
Without a doubt, my favourite stall at the Sunday markets is The Ginger Kid. I’m a vegetarian and am picky about whose food I eat and The Ginger Kid, aka Kevin White, is a perfectionist who is passionate about the food he produces and about the quality of the ingredients. His pastry is to die for and I’m looking forward to his permanent residence in the refurbished Market House and the new additions to his already amazing menu.
My favourite building
I love the range of historical buildings Altrincham has to offer, from the pretty black and white Lloyds Bank building (left) to the angular architecture of the Warrant House. I’m happy to see the renovation of Stamford House and think it’s been tastefully finished in keeping with the style of the building.
I think I’d have to say, however, my current favourites are the new hospital and the bus station – despite the fact they aren’t completed yet – because they represent the start of the continuing regeneration of Altrincham and the beginning of an exciting new chapter in the town’s history.
My bugbear about Altrincham
I don’t think I’m alone in saying that the most infuriating thing about Altrincham is the number of empty shops. There are so many talented, enthusiastic and creative people in this town and I know with affordable rent and rates and with the right support many of these people would want a space, shop or unit to harness their skills and develop successful businesses.
My hopes for the future of Altrincham
As a resident of Altrincham for over 20 years, I’ve been saddened by its decline. I’m passionate about Altrincham and its future and in common with most residents, I’m sure, my hope is that the current regeneration continues and it’s not too long before Altrincham is once again the thriving, affluent town it once was. There’s a community spirit that needs to be nurtured and community events such as Altrincham Sings and the French Festival that bring people together to celebrate what the town has to offer need to be supported and encouraged.
The best thing about Altrincham
It’s a bit cheesy, I know, but I honestly think the best thing about Altrincham is the people. The town is full of artistic, warm, intelligent, friendly and just generally lovely people who all contribute to the warmth and character Altrincham has. Aside from that, I think what’s great about Altrincham is that it’s close enough to Manchester to feel connected and trendy but far enough away to have all the benefits of a close community and a quieter life. As a twenty-something, the balance is just perfect for me and I can’t imagine living anywhere else.