The Mancunion

Britain's biggest student newspaper

Weeknight curfew for Fallowfield bars

Manchester City Council planners are enforcing a 2am curfew on bars in Fallowfield popular with students, forcing Fallow Cafe to close early on weeknights


Manchester City Council has issued firm warnings to the bars of Fallowfield, telling them that they must adhere to a strict two A.M. curfew during the week, or else.

Fallow Café is taking this a step further, deciding to close at one A.M. on weeknights.

Eight venues, including Fallow Café, The Font, and Revolution Fallowfield, were previously violating their Planning and Building licenses for opening later than this hour.

Three weeks ago, Manchester City Council planners served Breach Condition Notices and Planning Contravention Notices to the venues.

Fallow Café, which also acts as a bar and live music venue, used to open until three A.M. every night of the week, and was frequented by many late-night student customers. The Font and Revolution already closed at two A.M, but were warned by the Council for not conforming strictly to this closing time.

Zara, the manager of Fallow Cafe, told The Mancunion that “it always takes some time for people to leave, so we thought we’d set the closing time as one A.M. just to adhere to protocol.”

She also expressed a firm hope that their early curfew will be temporary: “We hope that if we show them that we listen and go by the rules then they’ll extend our planning license to three A.M.”

The Tab Manchester reported on Tuesday 28th that Fallow Café’s new closing time was due to “noise complaints from (boring) residents.” Zara insisted that these allegations were “wrong,” and that Fallow Café did not receive any noise complaints from residents.

“It’s rumours,” the manager emphasised. “A server probably told (reporters) that maybe it was related to noise complaints, so they wrote that without researching. It’s just hearsay.”

Zara speculated, however, that Manchester City Council planners’ visits to Fallowfield bars might have been motivated by general late-night noise complaints received from Fallowfield residents.

Managers of Revolution Fallowfield and The Font informed The Mancunion that when City planners spoke with them, they did not mention any specific noise complaints.

Manchester students living nearby were angered and confused by the reports of noise complaints near Fallow Café.

A second year student who lives a few doors down from Fallow Café told The Mancunion: “I live really close to Fallow Café, and I never hear anything. The church bells make more noise.”

She joked: “keep Fallow Café open, close the church!”

Another student who lives on the same street as Fallow Café, Landcross Road, and works in a nearby pub, told The Mancunion that the two A.M. curfew is an inconvenience for her.

“It’s annoying that it’s not open. A lot of staff where I work go there after our shifts end but we can’t now. I had to go to Revs (Revolution Fallowfield) after work last time but they were nearly closing.”

Other students were supportive of the Council City planners’ opening time regulation, however, especially if they were driven by noise complaints.

A second year student at the University of Manchester stated: “Obviously, it is a testament to the quality of Fallow Café that people are actually upset over it closing a little bit earlier.

With that said, if there are legitimate noise complaints, the needs of working class families living down that street clearly outweigh students who fancy a late brew.”

Another said bluntly: “F*ck students who have a problem with it — don’t be selfish. You live in a community, in a residential area. Drink somewhere else or go home.”