Long-time readers might recall a story we originally published in November 2021 about Manchester’s Night & Day café. A resident moved into the area during a Covid lockdown and then made a complaint to the council when the café reopened – resulting in a noise abatement notice being given to the venue.
So what’s happened since then? Well, the matter has been in court, and Night & Day have posted a somewhat defiant response across their social media pages. You can read in full below, but the gist of it? The café has kept doing what it’s doing since the abatement notice was put in place…
More amusingly, the resident who made the original complaint has moved away from the area. According to the Manchester Evening News, “Rex Chesney told Manchester Magistrates’ Court that his partner became a ‘recluse’ due to media coverage of the case”, claiming they had spent £21,000 on sound insulation work on the property before they left.
The case is due to be heard in court for the third time this coming week – but Ears To The House must pose a question. Is it in the interests of anyone that these proceedings continue? We don’t pose this question lightly, nor do we suggest that there are no issues to be resolved here.
But surely there are other ways of doing this. For example, if the former resident truly feels they’ve been wronged, they have the right to pursue the matter in a private case. The council, too, must face questions – is spending Manchester taxpayers’ money on fighting this case really the best use of their money?
And yes, Night & Day must accept a little humility – this statement stating they’ve “continued to operate in exactly the same manner during this period” is incredibly ill-advised. But when concerns about this case are even being raised within the legal system – District Judge Margaret McCormack adjourned the case for a second time in March 2023, warning that both parties would be “going around in circles” – it might be time for a rethink.
The truth is this is all part of the wider issues being raised by gentrification – and we believe these issues are better decided through debate and reason rather than through intemperate legal argument in front of a judge…
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