Much-loved Manchester café, Essy’s became the unexpected star of The Chris Moyles Show on Radio X this morning, as Chris offered to treat listeners in the area to breakfast there live on air this morning.
Chris was broadcasting from Radio X’s Manchester studio and promised to buy listeners breakfast if they visited the café during the show. He sent Dominic Byrne and producer James Robinson from the show’s team to help serve breakfast as the café was inundated with listeners.
Speaking on his Radio X show at around 7:30am, Chris told listeners: “We thought we would find a lovely little breakfast place in Manchester city centre and for anybody who’s listening in the show that works in Manchester city centre, we’ll buy you breakfast.”
Producer James went to scout out Essy’s after a listener recommendation, and Chris invited listeners to go down and enjoy a breakfast butty on the Radio X tab.
The first listeners turned up within 4 minutes of Chris revealing the destination on air, with the show crossing live to the café throughout the morning to speak to owner Shakeela Majeed, Manager Claire Smith and their customers. Listeners travelled from around the city – with one even jumping in the car and making the trip from Liverpool.
Owner Shakeela Majeed told the team how the pandemic had affected the business, and what this morning’s visit from Radio X had been like: “This was an establishment with a queue outside at lunchtime. Jacket potatoes, sandwiches, bacon butties, that sort of thing, and the workforce doesn’t look like it’s all coming back.
“We’re about 30% of what we were with the workforce so we’ve had to literally redesign our whole business model. We’ve had to go on to opening at weekends, opening in the evenings, delivery systems etc.
“We’ve only got through with no.1) government help and no.2) working night and day to make the place survive and I think that’s generally what everyone else is like in the city centre, small businesses and cafes and restaurants like us.
“This morning has been excellent. For us, this has put us back on the map. Thank you for choosing us, thank you for giving us this opportunity, we really appreciate it!”
Manager Claire Smith added: “A lot of people have found us today that I’ve never seen before. I know all our customers really, I’m here early in the morning and I finish late the afternoon – I know everybody, and everybody knows me. But today I didn’t know anybody that came in.
“Hopefully we’ll see people again, you know that have come in today, I know it’s a free sandwich, but hopefully they’ll come back.”
Chris and the team were broadcasting from Manchester after “going rogue” during the show’s Prize Dump Tour, which saw the team personally delivering a van’s worth of prizes to winners homes throughout this week.
The team decided to take a trip to Manchester for a night out, broadcasting this morning’s show from Radio X’s Manchester studio.