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What will studying in Manchester be like during Covid-19?

Resource from The Essential English Centre

As we prepare to re-open our English language school on Monday 7th September 2020, we also want to turn our attention to the other important aspects of your trip to make sure your language travel experience is exciting and rewarding.

As well as face to face English lessons, students can stay in our accommodation (either Homestay or Student Residence) and spend time in the afternoons, evenings and weekends exploring the city of Manchester and taking part in exciting guided trips outside of the city. Our weekend trips include places such as Wales, Liverpool and the Lake District.

(Left) A city centre park next to the National Football Museum, Manchester

(Right) A pre-lockdown trip to Alton Towers with our adventure partners Smile Adventures

What will your language travel experience in Manchester look like during the Covid-19 pandemic?

On Saturday 4th July we saw the re-opening of many shops, pubs, restaurants, libraries and other businesses in Manchester.  We are very aware that Covid-19 is still here and so every business in Manchester has adapted and made changes to make a safe re-opening possible. The following will be the new normal:

  • Social distancing.

  • Wearing face masks where possible and in some circumstances you must wear a face mask.

  • Hand washing and hand sanitising.

It is actually quite impressive how businesses in Manchester have responded and how normal these changes are already starting to feel.  

What will be open?

By September we expect the city to be mostly open and there will be plenty of socially-distanced activities available so you can make the most of your free time. Here is a list of the venues which have already received permission to re-open.

  • Hotels, hostels, bed and breakfast accommodation, holiday apartments or boarding houses

  • Places of worship

  • Libraries

  • Restaurants, cafes and workplace canteens

  • Bars

  • Pubs

  • Cinemas

  • Museums and galleries

  • Hair salons and barbers

  • Outdoor playgrounds

  • Outdoor gyms

  • Funfairs, theme parks and adventure parks and activities

  • Other indoor leisure centres or facilities, including indoor games, recreation and entertainment venues

  • Social clubs

  • Indoor attractions at aquariums, zoos, safari parks, farms, wildlife centres and any place where animals are exhibited to the public as an attraction

You can also expect to see more outside spaces available for leisure activities. The council are making large areas of Manchester pedestrian-only zones, providing more outside space to eat and drink. The council are even in talks to make these a permanent feature of the city.

(Left) An artist’s impression of what a permanently pedestrianized Stevenson Square could look like.

“You can expect to see more outside spaces available for leisure activities.”

Museums and galleries

Elizabeth Gaskell’s House museum in Manchester
Elizabeth Gaskell’s House museum in Manchester

We are so proud of the variety of museums and galleries in Manchester and we are sure you will love them too! Whether your interests are in science, history, art or the industrial revolution, there is a large choice of museums and galleries in Manchester and we recommend you visit all of them. Many are free of charge and we expect most to be open from August 2020.

Music, bars and pubs

A bar in Manchester preparing for a Covid-19 safe re-opening on 4th July 2020
A bar in Manchester preparing for a Covid-19 safe re-opening on 4th July 2020

Manchester is a well-known student city with one of the largest student populations in Europe, so it is no surprise that the music, bar and pub scene has always been an important part of life in the city. With such a variety of venues now open we are sure you will have plenty of options for every night of your stay.


Walnut Persian restaurant, Rusholme, Manchester
Walnut Persian restaurant, Rusholme, Manchester

If great food is your thing then rest assured there will be a huge variety of cuisine to choose from. Most restaurants re-opened on July 4th and many have transformed their restaurants to offer Covid-19 safe dining. Walnut Persian restaurant in Rusholme is one of our personal favourites and they have renovated a new floor in their restaurant to allow for social-distanced dining.


"We are OPENING!!" from The Essential English Center

Opening 7th September 2020

The Essential English Center is pleased to announce that we will be opening our school for face to face English lessons on Monday 7th September!

Since the lockdown began in the UK, we have been delivering all of our lessons online using our award-winning virtual classroom. The lockdown is now lifting in the UK and whilst we recognise the risk of Coronavirus is still a reality for everyone, we believe we can open our school and maintain a low-risk environment.

Our safe re-opening is based on small class sizes with social distancing, frequent hand washing and regular and proven cleaning within the school. Of course, we have a much more detailed approach to how we will do this and we have spent the last few months taking part in specialised training and creating a detailed risk assessment which covers every aspect of your experience with us.

We believe that opening in September means students can benefit from all of the advantages that a language travel experience can offer, whilst staying as safe as possible.


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