Gary Neville admits £400m mistake after Manchester development scheme U-turn

Gary Neville has admitted he made a huge mistake in his £400 million development in Manchester city centre.

Neville and former Manchester United team-mate Ryan Giggs issued a plan to transform Jackson’s Row in the heart of Manchester into a development known as St Michael’s in 2016.

Neville wanted to demolish the iconic Sir Ralph Abercromby pub and the pair faced backlash from concerned campaigners at the time.

Their plan included a five-star hotel, apartments, offices and restaurants.

Neville and Giggs along with their business partners advised their plans for St Michael’s and work began around 18 months ago.

The former right-back has described his project as a “bumpy ride”, but he is confident it will create 2,200 jobs and an extra 700 jobs in construction.

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 Live’s Wake Up To Money, Neville said: “It’s been challenging all the way through for different reasons.”

While the plan was approved in 2018, Neville stresses he has taken “responsibility” for the planning issues surrounding the project and insists “I recognise the mistake that I made”. He remains “proud” of this project and we can’t begin to think how he manages to get involved in so much.

Just think about all of the time it takes working on Sky Sports and The Overlap.

Neville also admits he regrets trying to demolish the Sir Ralph Abercromby pub. He added: “I don’t know why or how I was thinking that at the time.

“I love old buildings, I have always renovated old buildings, the idea that we looked at that pub and the front of Bootle Street police station and thought we should knock it down, that was a huge mistake… I have openly admitted that we got it wrong but we have been corrected and we have owned up to our mistakes and we are now on site.”

Neville was also asked about featuring on the new series of Dragons’ Den.

“I am excited to join the Dragons, and to meet the entrepreneurs brave enough to face us in the Den. I hope my personal journey shows that you can take the experiences you’ve had in one part of your career and use them to do something entirely different and make it a success.

“Business is all about managing people and managing yourself and I’m looking forward to sharing my experience to help the entrepreneurs we’ll meet in the Den reach their potential.”

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