“It was like an angel p **** ng on the tip of my tongue” – Meet the boozers who are very happy to be back in the pubs

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“It was like an angel pissing on the tip of my tongue,” says Jimmy. The regular from The Shiredale in Harpurhey has just left a night shift carrying bitumen on the roads.

He took a quick shower after work before going straight to the pub at 10am to taste his favorite beer on tap.

It’s been three long months for Jimmy, while the pubs are closed.

The Shiredale, on Fernclough Road, is one of several sites in the region authorized to reopen today with social distancing measures.

Staff have been reorganizing the boozer to ensure it meets the new safety requirements.

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Customers must give their names, numbers and addresses at the door, there is a one way system marked on the floor and it is table service only.

Owner John Malone says making the pub safe for Covid took a lot of effort and money.




They had to pour 27 barrels of beer when the pub closed in late March, they lost a lot of income and had to hire more staff to reopen it.

If they hadn’t opened now, they would have closed permanently next month.

“It was a little nerve-wracking because we don’t know what to expect, we don’t know how customers will react.

“It was hard work, very hard work, very stressful. The amount of do’s and don’ts is a lot to watch.



Owner Deborah Thompson pouring a pint of Boddingtons at the Shiredale in Harpurhey.

“At the moment it’s not too bad, but everyone is sober. All guys when they have had a few, their attitude changes. When they have had their whiskey, asking them to keep the volume low will be difficult. ”

Paul Costa sits at the window with his pint of Boddingtons.

The 68-year-old says he has a taste for “magic.”



Owner John Malone at the Shiredale in Harpurhey.

“I feel good because it’s been a long time. It’s been almost four months and it’s great to see your local and take a pint of the old Boddys. ”

He says it’s “a little strange” to be back with the new rules.

At The Vine in Collyhurst and the cleaning lady Diane Hurst feels moved.



John Keane has his temperature taken at the Vine Pub in north Manchester.

Behind her, customers have their temperature checked upon entering.

” Its very important [that it’s opening for the community], ” she says.

“There are a lot of elderly people in the area who have come to see what has happened here. They said, “I can’t wait to go out, I haven’t been out for 12 weeks.”

“So today they hope to enter, even if they don’t drink coffee and tea for the elderly. It’s open to everyone. “




At the Alliance Inn in Blackley, and a group of young men laugh hysterically in the beer garden.

“I waited forever for a pint of fresh Stella, absolutely buzzing,” enthuses a bettor.

“Oh my god, this is unreal,” said his companion.

A huge beer tent was erected in the pub garden before their big bingo match later.

“We did everything. Whatever we can do and what we haven’t done, we will have to learn by mistake, “says Nicola McMillan while holding an inflatable doll – one of the props for pub games later.



DJ Micky Valente at the Alliance

All the pub tables are separated by plexiglass screens and she later puts on a face shield on arrival of the punters.

Pub enthusiast Tonika Ryan, 28, is pumped up for the day to come.

” How do I feel? The best day ever. Great Saturday, let’s go. I will see everyone, from a social distance.

“Keep safe, but have a good time.” We missed it. Local businesses are back. Go to the ally, wooo. ”

DJ Micky Valente sips a pint of Guinness, which he says tastes “classy”.



Carla Garside, Yasmin Johnson, Tonika Ryan à l’Alliance Inn.

“Breakfast, dinner and tea that,” he smiles.

He is about to make a few records later, and tells us to expect a lot of reggae and soul.


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Glue Pot at Newton Heath and Manchester Evening News meets Michael Deveney of The Manchester Fame Creation.

Several years ago, the 52-year-old man was photographed in a viral photo in which he was photographed lying on the road next to a pint of beer on New Years Eve.

“It’s one of those innate things,” he says, unperturbed by his local fame.

“It was very complicated. Two pints I had had, that’s all I had. ”

“Two pints of Bacardi,” jokes a friend.

“I was here that night. I got drunk from here. I had a few drinks. I woke up and took a taxi and left for the house, ”adds Michael.


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He says that tonight will be “sober”.

Friends who gathered outside say the photo was “epic” and they start singing “Manchester Picasso”.

“You never spilled a drop, did you, Michael?” Said one, cackling.

“It wasn’t my bottle,” he replies – tongue firmly in his cheek – before pulling out his cigarette.

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