17 May 2021 by Deanna Thomas

An exciting new addition to Altrincham’s Stamford Quarter has been announced as Bruntwood Works and Trafford Council reveal plans for a beautiful new temporary community space. The ‘Not So Secret Garden’ will open on Stamford Square June 4th, creating a beautiful new outdoor social hub in the heart of Altrincham. 

For the next six months, Stamford Square will be transformed into a green suburban oasis with covered al fresco seating areas centred around a solar-powered pergola, complete with seating, festoon lighting and a lush flower wall. The space will take over the whole of the Square, joining licensed café and vinyl venue Stutter and Twitch to further animate this previously under-used part of Altrincham town centre. Shoppers, families and visitors will now have a new green public space for to enjoy. 

Sustainability, well-being and community are at the centre of the concept. The whole space has been built with reclaimed and recycled materials, lit by solar-powered festoon lighting, surrounded by air-cleaning greenery, and sustained with harvested rainwater. It will be a peaceful place to sit, relax, learn, eat, drink and just hang out. 

The Not So Secret Garden will offer a rolling programme of workshops and events. There’ll be live music every Friday from Stutter and Twitch, free fitness sessions with Orange Theory, regular sustainability and wellness workshops including foraging events by Into the Wild, sustainability workshops with Inch Arts, a regular ‘Art Jam’ and a series of family-friendly activities.

Independent street food traders will be popping up at the Not So Secret Garden on a weekly basis too, creating an ever-changing menu of incredible food and drink. 

The new vision for the Stamford Quarter is to transform the area into a mixed-use destination that continues to benefit the overall Altrincham regeneration, making it an amazing place to live, work and play for local families and the wider community. 

The community can now have their say on the proposed masterplan here

Andrea George, Director of Town Centres and Consumer Brands said: “The arrival of the ‘Not So Secret Garden’ marks part of Bruntwood Works’ and Trafford Council’s ambitions to reshape the high street in Altrincham, which includes creating a community-focussed, multifaceted public square at the heart of the Stamford Quarter destination. 

“The Not So Secret Garden is central to this, bringing our vision for community, sustainability and wellbeing together with an activation designed to support the whole Altincham community - from the businesses in the Stamford Quarter to residents.”

Cllr James Wright, Trafford Council’s Executive Member for Housing and Regeneration, said: “The Not So Secret Garden is a fabulous project which will provide a huge boost to the centre of Altrincham and Stamford Square in particular.

“This beautiful new green and sustainable public space will be an oasis for shoppers, families and visitors and supports Trafford Council’s priorities to create successful and thriving places, being green and connected and having pride in our areas.”

The Not So Secret Garden launches on Friday 4th June with a programme of community workshops and events including family-focused pizza workshops with Into the Wild, Orange Theory Fitness session and live cookery demos by local food legend Robert Owen Brown Chef Proprietor of The Hinchliffe Arms and regular guest on BBC Radio 4’s Kitchen Cabinet.