Fewer shots, more sanitiser: Manchester prepares for freshers week in the time of Covid
In Fallowfield, local shops depend on trade from students, but worry that their behaviour may get out of hand
Enter 256, the popular student bar in Fallowfield, Manchester, and it’s usually the heat that hits you first. In ordinary times, and particularly during freshers’ week, the dimly-lit repurposed church building is packed with hundreds of sweaty youngsters dancing and enjoying booze-fuelled nights out.
Covid-19 has rendered such gatherings unimaginable, and this year will be much quieter. Capacity has been slashed by more than half. The dancefloor has been replaced by tables and chairs. There will be no crowd surfing or drunken flirtations at the bar. You sit down at a table, or you’re out.