My Stockport: Kate O’Brien

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Kate O’Brien, 38, works as an artist, with her own shop and studio in Stockport’s historic Market Hall. She was born in Nottingham, raised in Whaley Bridge, and moved to Stockport around ten years ago.

Favourite Stockport pub? It depends on what mood I’m in really, and there are so many good ones now, especially around the market place. Last time I ventured out I really enjoyed the cocktails at The Good Rebel; the Espresso Martinis are particularly awesome! I can’t really see any need to venture into Manchester anymore with places like this on the doorstep.

Favourite Stockport restaurant? Again, there are so many great independent cafes and bistros such as Barista, Laco, Tiamos, Blackshaws and The Produce Hall. Restaurant wise, I had a fantastic meal at The Wycliffe in Edgeley recently, which is just around the corner from where I live.

Favourite Stockport shop? Apart from my own?! There are a brilliant range of local artisans to be found in The Warren. For music and jewellery lovers, as well as quirky gift ideas, I love Jewel on the Hill.

Best thing about Stockport? Obviously I’m a bit fan of the architecture and I love hearing about the history behind the places, as well as the little stories that go along with them. I get to hear a lot of these at the market! Also, there’s a great buzz in the air, particularly around the market and Underbanks, that Stockport is on the up and it’s an exciting place to be.

Funniest thing you’ve ever seen in Stockport? Pretty much anything seen on the way back from town on the 192 during the 90s – I was there most Saturday nights!

Describe a perfect Stockport day? A meander past the iconic Viaduct down to the Underbank to grab a coffee and breakfast in one of the cafes. Then a wander around the brilliant independent shops down the Underbank and Market Place before either taking in a film at Redrock or an indulgent massage or beauty treatment in one of the salons. Then, a few drinks with friends (Covid restrictions permitting!) around the market place pubs, trying out some unusual beers and some tasty street food from The Produce Hall. 

What do you make of public transport in Stockport? I’m very fortunate that I can walk to my studio/shop in Stockport Market Hall in around 20 minutes so I don’t use public transport that much anymore. I know rail links into Manchester are good, but it would also be great to have the Metrolink in order to easily access other parts of Greater Manchester, especially as most other towns in Greater Manchester already benefit from this.

What do you miss about Stockport that’s no longer here? I was a big fan of the shop Cobwebs in my youth. It would be good to visit it again for nostalgia purposes but I’m not too sure if I could still rock the black lipstick and striped tights I used to get from there!

Favourite Stockport memory? Being part of the Giant Leap Frog Trail was great, and it was really fantastic to see all the frogs auctioned off and raising over £30,000 for Stepping Hill Children’s Unit.

And here’s a few of Kate’s favourite things to finish…..

TV Show: I’ll watch comedy that never stops being hilarious over and over again. Things like Father Ted, The Office, Dinnerladies, Absolutely Fabulous, Frasier. More recently I loved Fleabag, Orange Is The New Black and Ozark.
Film: Too many to pick from!
Album: There are too many to choose from, but Songs in the Key of Life by Stevie Wonder never fails to make me happy.
Book: I love historical and contemporary fiction; anything by Sebastian Faulks, Victoria Hislop or Margaret Atwood.

If you’d like to appear in our ‘My Stockport’ feature, please email des@theviaduct.uk.

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