COPYRIGHT:  Andrea Schaffer .    Used under the CC 2.0 Licence. 

COPYRIGHT: Andrea Schaffer Flickr.comUsed under the CC 2.0 Licence. 

Dear David,

It's been a couple of weeks since we last spoke and your article went into The Sunday Times. It was a good piece and gave people all the right information on how we run our business. However, the headline 'Wasteland cider soothes Manchester's gangland heart' just didn't sit right with me. I've had a few days to mull it over and also speak to those in our community who love what we do and who love Moss Side.

You see the problem is it gives the impression that Moss Side is still a 'gangland' and really offends those who have lived and loved through those dark times and come out the other side. Come on, those days were twenty years ago. Do we really have to still live in the shadow of the area's past?

My wife and I moved to the area eight years ago and have loved living in these streets and have not been afraid to raise our two kids here. One of the main reasons we moved onto the street we're in is because we saw young families playing out in the road and a vibrant multicultural mix. Not a hoodie or thug in sight! My wife and I threw ourselves into not just getting to know our neighbours but also the wider community. I became vice chair of my residents' association and sat in many community meetings attended by residents, councillors and police. One such meeting particularly stands out when the police shared how Moss Side actually had the lowest crime rate in South Manchester, beating that of it's seemingly more affluent neighbours, Fallowfield, Chorlton and even Didsbury! Now the cynic in you may say 'well you don't rob from your own?' but we like to think it's the great community spirit we hold dear that makes us all love these streets we call home all the more.

So  journalists and editors, please pay attention, we know it's hard to shake off a reputation and it's easy to fall back into old mindsets that Moss Side was once a gangland but lets leave it at that. It was once a gangland. Once. 

Yours Sincerely

Dan Hasler

Founder - The Moss Cider Project