March 2020

Hilti to join growing Circle Square neighbourhood on Oxford Road Corridor

Hilti, a multinational construction equipment and software services specialist, has confirmed its headquarters relocation to No.1 Circle Square.

Circle Square is one of the most sought-after places in Manchester for office space owing to its location and access to the city’s finest talent.

Matt Lee, Bruntwood SciTech Head of Commercial

The company will occupy 42,000 sq ft office space, moving its 200-strong team from Trafford Park into the second, third and fourth floors of No.1 Circle Square. The move is expected to take place in December 2020.

Matias Järnefelt, managing director for Hilti in Northern Europe and Great Britain, had considered many office locations, but felt that none had met their requirements better than No.1 Circle Square.

The move marks our commitment to Manchester with its international airport, reputation for innovation, thriving construction industry and great universities,” he added. “As the hub for Northern Europe, a more modern head office will allow us to better position Hilti on the international jobs market and attract global talent to come and work with our world class team.”

Matt Lee, head of commercial for Bruntwood SciTech – Manchester, said: “Hilti choosing Circle Square for their new home after more than 30 years in Trafford is testament to the retail and amenities on offer there as well as Symphony Park, the first and largest new city park for generations.”

Hilti will join other confirmed customers Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Mills & Reeve at No.1 Circle Square.

March 2020

DNA Day comes to Manchester for the first time

DNA Day is a scientific and cultural festival which gives the public the opportunity to learn more about genetics and our DNA.

“These events showcase the wide range of ways that genetic science impacts upon our lives, from health to archaeology. We have great events about de-extinction, creativity, and bioethics”

Professor Jerome de Groot, University of Manchester and DNA Day Manchester 2020 originator

Between the 23rd and 25th April, Manchester will celebrate DNA Day for the first time and provide audiences with the opportunity to understand the significance of DNA’s discovery and genetics studies and delve into their further implementations. 

The festival promises to deliver a wide spectrum of events at different locations throughout the city, including the screening of cult movie Jurassic Park at the Manchester Museum, a book club in the beautiful surroundings of Elizabeth Gaskell’s house and poetry workshops and readings from Michael Symons Roberts at the Central Library. There will also be a Twitter conference, Decolonize DNA, which claims to investigate who owns our genetic information.

Guests are also invited to meet researchers who are responsible for Manchester Museum’s Egyptology collections, and to attend a special screening of Human Nature, a provocative documentary exploring human evolution hosted by HOME. DNA Day will take place between 23rd and 25th April at various locations along the Oxford Road Corridor and Manchester’s Science and Industry Museum.

February 2020

Northcoders bring coding bootcamp to Circle Square

Northcoders position themselves for further growth at Manchester Technology Centre.

“We are delighted to have welcomed Northcoders to Manchester Technology Centre. The work they are doing around developing skills and creating the software developers of the future is critical to the growth of Manchester’s economy and is perfectly aligned with our vision of supporting the growth of the digital technology sector. Many of our customers have already recruited multiple Northcoders into their dev teams and we look forward to connecting Chris’s team with more high growth technology businesses as they scale their campus.”

Tom Renn, managing director of Manchester Science Park and Oxford Road Corridor Executive Member

ircle Square welcome Northcoders, the coding bootamp for the North, to Manchester Technology Centre. The new 10,000 sq ft campus is now home to Northcoders’ 30-plus strong teaching, partnership, marketing and senior leadership teams and can accommodate 100 students at any one time.

Northcoders join a strong community of tech businesses growing at a rapid pace at Manchester Technology Centre. Customers in the Tech Incubator work across varying tech sectors from coding, tech for good, cyber security and more. The incubator provides a home for start up and scale up businesses looking to trial ideas, develop new teams and innovate among other like minded companies. 

Since its inaugural course in 2015, Northcoders has helped over 500 people switch career into tech on average starting salaries of £25,000. As well as the Manchester campus, Northcoders also has a site at Platform in Leeds.

Over the past year, it was selected as one of the country’s brightest tech stars in Creative England’s CE50 list and was named Business of the Year at the 15th Annual Chamber Business Awards.  It has also launched scholarship schemes and a deferred payment programme aimed at women and gender minorities, as well as those who identify as BAME or LGBTQ+, have a disability or have had limited access to education, to help address diversity in tech. The firm was also recently appointed by leading holiday company On the Beach to be its academy training partner.

February 2020

Manchester Metropolitan University and University of Manchester’s Institute of Biotechnology awarded Queen’s Anniversary Prizes at Buckingham Palace

TRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall have attended the Buckingham Palace ceremony on Thursday 20th February to award the Queen’s Anniversary Prizes for Higher and Further Education.

Mother Tongue Other Tongue continues to be a fantastic way to bring together people from many different backgrounds”.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Malcolm Press, Manchester Metropolitan University

“We are proud of the fact that we’re helping to deliver solutions for a more sustainable world”.

Professor Nigel Scrutton, The Manchester Institute of Biotechnology

The Manchester Metropolitan University has received the award for its Mother Tongue Other Tongue project, an annual poetry contest for pupils run by the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Manchester Metropolitan University.

The project encourages children who speak a community language at home to celebrate their ‘mother tongue’ by writing a poem in it, and for pupils learning a new language at school to write a poem in their ‘other tongue’. Mother Tongue Other Tongue has engaged more than 30,000 students aged 8-18 since 2012.

The Manchester Institute of Biotechnology (MIB) has also been awarded for the recognised environmental benefits of its pioneering expertise in industrial biotechnology.

Working with industrial partners, the MIB aims to transition chemicals manufacture from petrochemicals to sustainable biomanufacturing through the development of disruptive bio-based technologies. This approach will foster innovation and drive a new bioeconomy, with Manchester a key driver of green growth and a recognised northern research powerhouse with a global outreach.

The Queen’s Anniversary Prizes reward outstanding contribution made to the UK by an academic institution. The Prize itself consists of a silver gilt medallion and a decorated and inscribed certificate granting the award, signed by Her Majesty The Queen.

January 2020

First patient to undergo pioneering CAR-T treatment at Manchester Royal Infirmary is recovering well

The first patient to undergo the pioneering CAR-T therapy for cancer at Manchester Royal Infirmary (MRI) has shown promising results following treatment last year.

“This is a ground-breaking new treatment for adult cancer patients at the MRI which uses the patient’s own immune cells, allowing us to create a powerful medicine tailored to an individual’s needs”.

Dr Eleni Tholouli

Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust (MFT) was named as one of a very small number of centres in the UK to offer the revolutionary new treatment, widely regarded as the most exciting cancer treatment development in decades, in 2018.

The first patient to benefit from the revolutionary treatment had been diagnosed with large B-cell lymphoma – a type of cancer of the blood and lymph glands – in 2018 after feeling unwell for several months.

She underwent two separate bouts of chemotherapy, which didn’t manage to successfully treat the cancer. It was then she was offered CAR-T therapy at Manchester Royal Infirmary, which is part of MFT.

CAR-T (Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cell) therapy is a personalised medicine used to treat patients with certain types of leukaemia and lymphoma. It is a highly complex new type of immunotherapy which involves collecting and using the patients’ own immune cells to target their cancer in a process which is completed over a number of weeks.

Dr Eleni Tholouli, Consultant Haematologist and Director of the Adult Stem Cell Transplant and CAR-T Therapy Unit at Manchester Royal Infirmary said: “To see [our patient] have these incredible results in such a short space of time is really encouraging. This reassures us that we have to continue all the hard work and make this therapy available to more patients.”

December 2019

Hatch inaugurates Manchester’s first sustainable Christmas Markets

On Friday 29th and Saturday 30th November 2019, Hatch and Bruntwood partnered up with Zero Waste Goods to host Manchester’s first all Sustainable Christmas Market.

“[The] Sustainable Christmas market was ahead of the curb. There is a demand for eco, alternative & conscious shopping. We managed to create something young and progressive – an alternative to the traditional markets in Albert Square”.


The project, Christmas Shouldn’t Cost the Earth, has seen the revolutionary Christmas market welcome over 25 independent, zero waste stalls, all providing innovative, eco-friendly products. Perfect for a range of Christmas gifts, and proving extremely popular with customers (around 8,000).

Throughout the weekend, there were also a number of workshops and panel discussions that included Sustainable Wreath Making, Upcycled Kids Decoration Making and Inspiring Talks from Manchester’s Eco-Heroes – all used to reinforce the theme of the event, that Christmas Shouldn’t Cost the Earth.

Not only that, but there was plenty of live entertainment courtesy of DJ Rick Donoghue, The Not Quite Big Band and Manchester’s popular Drag Queens, Violet Vogue and The Real Banksie, providing festive cheers across the site.

Through this event Hatch has emerged as a pioneer in the field of sustainable shopping and has managed to answer the demand for systemic change before anybody else.

November 2019

Bruntwood SciTech celebrates major milestone at Circle Square

Bruntwood SciTech has celebrated a major milestone at Circle Square with the topping out of its first two commercial buildings – No.1 and No.2 Circle Square.

“Circle Square will be a real asset to the city, strengthening its role at the cutting edge of tech and innovation-led business, creating hundreds of jobs and developing ever closer links with our world-leading universities”.

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council

“As a partner in the Oxford Road Corridor [..], we have a long history of investing in this important part of the city and working in partnership to enable amazing talent and brilliant new ideas”.

Chris Oglesby, Chair of Bruntwood SciTech

Located in the heart of Manchester’s Oxford Road Corridor innovation district, No.1 and No.2 Circle Square provide 400,000 sq ft of commercial workspace at the new city centre neighbourhood.

Sir Richard Leese, Leader of Manchester City Council, joined Chair of Bruntwood SciTech – Chris Oglesby, and guests to celebrate the landmark event.

No.1 and No.2 Circle Square have already received exceptional levels of interest from national and international innovation-led businesses. Global tech company Hewlett Packard Enterprise has already announced the relocation of 300 employees to No.1 Circle Square to be close to the city’s talent pool, while leading law firm for many businesses in the science and tech sector – Mills & Reeve recently announced the relocation of its Manchester office to No.1 Circle Square in 2020.

Both buildings offer a range of co-working, small office suites and social spaces, as well as larger floor plates to accommodate fast growing digital and tech businesses. No.1 will also provide state-of-the-art conference and events facilities and a large ground floor welcome space with cafe.

Circle Square – a joint venture between Bruntwood SciTech and Vita Group – is a new neighbourhood for the city that will boast over 1,700 new homes, 1.2 million sq ft of workspace and over 100,000 sq ft of retail and leisure space, providing a variety of boutique retailers, restaurants, bars and pavement cafes, all centered around Symphony Park. The Park, the first in the city for a generation, will host a variety of community and cultural events celebrating the city’s dynamic and creative community for residents and visitors alike.

October 2019

The Christabel Pankhurst Institute for Health Technology

A new multimillion-pound research institute that will maximise the Oxford Road Corridor academic strengths in digital health and advanced materials to discover innovative health and care solutions is being launched by a consortium, led by The University of Manchester.

“This is a really exciting opportunity to work with our partners to exploit the Universitys strengths in digital health and advanced materials to make a real difference to the health and economic development of Greater Manchester”.

President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell

The centre will be called The Christabel Pankhurst Institute for Health Technology. The name celebrates Dame Christabel Pankhurst, a driving force behind one of the most significant social reforms of the 20th century and demonstrates the University’s commitment to redress the underrepresentation of women and other groups in science and academic leadership through its equality, diversity and inclusion action plan.

The Institute is being launched following a £5million award from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s Local Growth Fund and is part of an ambitious plan set out to boost the city-region’s provision in this area. The consortium is made up of the University, Manchester Science Partnerships, Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust, and Health Innovation Manchester.

The aim of the collaboration is to capitalise on the Oxford Road Corridor strengths in digital health and advanced materials and develop innovative products and services for the health care sector. In turn this will drive business growth and employment as well as boost the long-term health benefits of the city-region.

The institute will be housed in a flagship building at the centre of the University’s campus on the Oxford Road Corridorand will play a critical role in pulling innovations through from basic research to market ready products and services, which can then be accelerated into clinical use through Greater Manchester’s devolved health and care system and established innovation pathway.

September 2019

Low-carbon smart city project Triangulum reaches successful conclusion

A £30 million award-winning smart cities project in which Manchester Metropolitan University was a key partner has reached a successful conclusion.

“Manchester is now one of the leading cities for Smart City technologies, using the expertise shared among partners to tackle the challenges of today and tomorrow. The technology has helped us to boost green energy solutions, and we can effectively balance energy demand, storage and usage – creating a more sustainable Oxford Road Corridor.”

Professor Bamidele Adebisi, Smart City lead at Manchester Metropolitan University

Triangulum was a five-year European Union-funded project in which places chosen to demonstrate technology – known as Lighthouse Cities – were used as a testbed to prove low-carbon, cost-efficient solutions are possible and could be rolled out to other urban centres across the continent.

Manchester was one of the participants, showcasing technologies that can now be achieved and replicated, in the key areas of ICT, sustainable mobility and energy along the city’s Oxford Road Corridor.

As part of the pilot scheme, Siemens worked with the University on a distributed energy system at the Birley Campus. A 400kWh lithium ion battery was introduced and 595 solar panels installed on the roof of the Brooks Building, which together with the existing combined heat and power plant can supply electricity to 900 student rooms and the academic building.

Energy-saving projects such as Triangulum have helped the University to rank second in the People and Planet university sustainability league 2019.

Triangulum closed with an international conference in Stavanger, Norway, which, along with Manchester and Eindhoven in The Netherlands, was one of the three ‘points’ of the smart city demonstrator triangle.

It is envisaged the findings from Manchester pilot will be used to develop smart city quarters in other cities around the world.

Triangulum was one of 14 European Smart Cities and Communities Lighthouse Projects funded by the European Union’s Research and Innovation Framework Programme known as Horizon 2020.

August 2019

Cézanne at the Whitworth

The Whitworth is set to host an extraordinary collection of drawings and prints by Paul Cézanne (1839-1906) that has been gifted and placed on long-term loan to the Mancunian art gallery by collector, gallerist, author and publisher Karsten Schubert.

This important act of generosity means that the Whitworth now holds the best collection of Cézanne works on paper in the United Kingdom, including a version of every print produced by the artist. These works will significantly expand the research potential of the Whitworth’s important collection of late nineteenth-century French and Dutch drawings by artists including Van Gogh, Seurat and Gauguin.

Cézanne is widely considered to be one of the most influential artists of the nineteenth century, described by both Matisse and Picasso as ‘the father of us all’. Renowned for his accomplished approach to building form with colour, this exhibition will place focus on his drawings and prints, revealing Cézanne to be a draughtsman of great range and complexity. His lively, deeply personal drawings were never exhibited during his lifetime and were barely mentioned in his correspondence, only being discovered after his death.

An exhibition catalogue published by Ridinghouse in association with the Whitworth accompanies the show. It includes a lead essay by renowned Impressionist scholar Richard Thomson on the significance of the loans to the Whitworth’s collection of nineteenth-century drawings and contributions by Elizabeth Cowling, Yuval Etgar, Rosalind McKever, Karsten Schubert, Colin Wiggins and Edward Wouk.

Cézanne’s work will be on exhibit from 24 August 2019 to 01 March 2020.

July 2019

Royal Northern College of Music and Abbey Road Institute join forces for an exciting collaboration

Students on RNCM’s Popular Music programme will have the unique chance to work with students on the Abbey Road Institute’s Advanced Diploma in Music Production and Sound Engineering, as well as receiving advice from industry legends.

“Abbey Road is such an iconic British studio, where some of the most important and influential popular music of all time was and is still created. The session was an incredible learning experience and to be able to work with a producer of Haydn’s experience and expertise was truly inspiring”

Andy Stott, RNCM Head of Popular Music

It all started when Andy Stott, RNCM Head of Popular Music, took the Joe Keegan Band for a recording session at Abbey Road Studio Two with students from the Institute.

The band, already signed to Norther Quarter Records and comprising current students, paired up with producer and Abbey Road Institute guest lecturer and double Grammy award winner Haydn Bendall to show their peers what can be achieved during a day’s recording. The students got to experience a professional coaching session with an experienced producer, using some of the finest recording equipment, and from breaking down song structure to writing Hammond organ parts, the session was a burst of creative energy.

Mike Sinnott, Abbey Road Institute London Campus Manager, has described the experience as mutually beneficial for both parties, providing students with the chance to work in the iconic Abbey Road Studios and cultivate creative relationships that will shape the future of popular music.

May 2019

The University of Manchester’s GEIC wins RICS 2019 Award

The University of Manchester’s Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre (GEIC) has won ‘Project of the Year’ at the region’s RICS Awards 2019.

​The new building, which is the first on the university’s North Campus in 40 years, won the ‘Design through Innovation’ award before winning the overall category.

The GEIC will open up opportunities for new innovation using the 2D material Graphene. There are plans for regeneration of the North Campus site to become a ‘Graphene City’, to which the GEIC will be pivotal and is expected to make an economic impact of more than £100m over the facilities’ lifetime. Diana Hampson, Director of Estates said: “We have an ambitious Estates Strategy and a billion pound investment programme that is now bearing fruit in the transformation of our buildings and Campus around Oxford Road.

“We are delighted with this award as recognition for the quality of our design and construction projects. The GEIC is one of our signature buildings and houses innovation for the 21st century using graphene technologies first isolated at The University of Manchester.

“Our ambition for developing the campus and adding value to the city was also boosted in March of this year when we launched Innovation District (ID) Manchester, demonstrating our commitment to developments that enhance the buildings, public realm and quality of Manchester’s built environment.
We are very proud to win this award – and to win it for such a unique building as the GEIC.”

April 2019

Manchester Science Partnerships delivers record financial results

Manchester Science Partnerships (MSP) has hailed a “year of strong progress” with levels of investment and growth reflecting strong demand from new and existing customers.

The 12 months to the end of September 2018 saw a 35% increase in the consolidated net worth of MSP and its subsidiaries from £58.3m to £78.9m.
MSP’s city centre campuses – Manchester Science Park and Citylabs, which are in the heart of Manchester’s Oxford Road Corridor innovation district, offer lab and office space for digital tech and life science businesses together with specialist programmes of business support, including a post-accelerator innovation centre – Mi-IDEA in partnership with Cisco.

Combined, the Oxford Road Corridor campuses tripled profits from £4.7m (2017) to £17.2m as occupancy levels increased and property valuations rose. The year also saw MSP launch a Tech Incubator at Manchester Technology Centre, designed for entrepreneurs and SMEs working in data science and technology innovation.

Tom Renn, Managing Director, MSP said: “Against a backdrop of significant uncertainty in the wider economy, in particular for those working in the science sector, we are heartened by the extraordinary resilience of our customers and of the science community in the UK, who have  continued to successfully raise investment and grow their businesses at pace both within our portfolio and across Greater Manchester. 
“Construction of Citylabs 2.0 for QIAGEN, a world leading international molecular diagnostics company, who have taken a 100% pre-let, is a hallmark of that success and reinforces the quality of the Greater Manchester offer, partnerships and assets. Citylabs will be at the heart of a new globally-leading genomics and precision medicine campus which will create over 1,500 high value jobs and add over £150m to the Greater Manchester economy, and importantly benefit the 2.8 million people living here as new tests and treatments emerge.”

2019 will see continued growth; the next stage of the Manchester Science Park campus masterplan will get underway with additional development as part of plans to grow to 1million sq ft and progress in the construction of Citylabs 2.0.

March 2019

Oxford Road Corridor enters transatlantic partnership to enhance growth and competitiveness of life sciences innovation companies across the city region.

Manchester’s Oxford Road Corridor, Health Innovation Manchester and TRUSTECH have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to create a new partnership with Nashville-based Life Sciences investment company, Briovation. This forms part of Greater Manchester’s continued commitment to foster the growth and competitiveness of its flourishing Life Sciences sector.

The Life Science industry plays a critical role within the health and social care system, providing a pipeline of innovation with the potential to transform population health and wellbeing. Oxford Road Corridor is fortunate in that it enjoys a diverse and burgeoning Life Sciences sector, encompassing everything from pharmaceutical, medical technology and digital companies who are thriving in the city-regions devolved health and social care system and deriving significant benefits from the level of support currently on offer such as funding, expertise and brokering.  However, this new partnership with Briovation will enable Greater Manchester to bolster its already highly attractive proposition with the provision of additional investment funding, entrepreneurial programmes, and innovation export and import opportunities between the city-region and the lucrative US market.

Briovation have a reputation for delivering results and currently provide a portfolio of services aimed predominantly at supporting life sciences SMEs including strategic advisory support, assisting companies moving from an idea to a successful launch, and securing investment;  all of which have the potential to contribute to accelerating innovation, yield additional growth and create additional opportunities for life sciences industry across the region – a priority for Greater Manchester and the wider UK. 

Running for an initial period of 3 years, the MoU is a critical first step in identifying aspects of Briovation’s US offer that can add value to the Greater Manchester Life Sciences economy, and, tailoring it to the UK market with a view to co-delivering it in an integrated manner, enhancing the overall support and opportunities on offer to the life sciences industry.  A comprehensive implementation plan will be launched in the second half of 2019.

Jackie Oldham, Director of Strategic Initiatives, Oxford Road Corridor said “We are excited to partner with Briovation to broaden opportunity for local and regional healthcare businesses that are looking both for strategic investment and the ability to introduce their offerings into the complex US healthcare market”. 

Vic Gatto, Briovation’s CEO and Co-Founder said “Briovation has identified Greater Manchester and the North of England as an important world-wide centre of healthcare innovation, and envisions this collaborative partnering relationship as highly complementary to its existing US business. The Greater Manchester region has developed a healthcare ecosystem that is recognised globally for its leadership in Health and Social Care, and its dynamic entrepreneurial environment creates an ideal opportunity to implement our proven approach outside of the US”.

March 2019

ID Manchester, the University of Manchester’s latest development

The University of Manchester has unveiled a bold ambition to create a world leading Innovation District in the heart of Manchester.

“… I truly believe we can make ID Manchester the innovation capital of Europe, providing the perfect conditions for organisations of all sizes and from different sectors, to share knowledge and work together turning incredible ideas into reality.”

Professor Dame Nancy Rothwell, President and Vice-Chancellor of The University of Manchester and Chair of the Oxford Road Corridor Partnership

Plans to develop a new neighbourhood on the university’s 10.6 hectare North Campus site which would bring huge economic benefits to the city, including the creation of around 6,000 jobs.

The site is in a prime location, adjacent to Piccadilly Rail Station and is part of the Oxford Road Corridor.

In their search for a development partner, the university’s £1.5bn vision for ‘ID Manchester’ was presented at MIPIM 2019 to over 150 property professionals from all over the world.

Joanne Roney, Chief Executive, Manchester City Council said: “The University and the city have long been closely aligned. We have grown up together and share a spirit of innovation, revolution and entrepreneurship. ID Manchester will build upon this proud shared history.”

An OJEU notice is due to be released this summer, signalling the start of the competitive process, with a view to appointing a development partner by mid-2020.