World-class viewing facilities in the heart of Manchester

What are we doing about COVID from 19th July?

As a viewing facility, our role is to provide a safe, comfortable place where different people can come together to share their views and to explore attitudes on a wide variety of subjects. So, with ‘safe and comfortable’ as our aim, we have decided that:

  • We will continue to follow MRS guidelines and the preferences of our clients when it comes to social distancing. The guidelines say that social distancing is no longer necessary as long as all participants are informed in advance and are happy with this. 
  • We are continuing to ask people to wear a mask in the shared spaces and when moving around the building. Our social distancing signage remains in place as a gentle reminder to avoid close contact.
  • We will continue to provide sanitiser and masks as required.
  • Once seated in the studio, participants can remove their masks as we have large, clear screens which provide protection without obscuring expressions or muffling voices.
  • Our staff will continue to wear masks when interacting with clients and participants
  • We will continue to ask that people do not come to the studio if they are suffering from symptoms, have tested positive or been asked to self-isolate.
  • We will continue with our COVID-safe protocols regarding sanitisation of the studios, stationery, etc.
  • For the time being we have decided that we will continue to limit bookings to two studios out of three at any given time. Having an empty studio allows us to give participants more space, particularly when arriving, leaving and waiting for sessions to begin.

Why choose us?

Studios that meet your needs

Whether you’re planning focus groups, in-depth interviews or user-testing, our studios can be arranged to perfectly suit your needs. They all feature an observation room, wi-fi access, comfortable furniture, air conditioning and essential AV equipment.

Tech to make it easy

We can provide MP4 and MP3 recordings of your research on one of our USB drives and/or via GDPR-compliant WeTransfer, and if you combine this with our unique Magic Marker – used to easily mark your MP4 focus group recordings – you have all of the options you’ll need to analyse and present your findings.

Free parking after 5pm

Don’t worry about having to walk very far! In the evening we have our own car park, located just across the road from our studios.

In the heart of Manchester

A stroll away from Manchester City Centre, you’ll have plenty to do before and after your research.


We are listed in multiple trusted market research directories and are equipped to live-stream your focus groups with assistance from either Stream Team or Focus Vision.



Our studios

Studio 1

Click here to view our floor plan for Studio 1

Studio 1 is our largest studio, making it ideal for workshops and focus groups, featuring an observation room which seats up to ten people.

Studio 2

Click here to view our floor plan for Studio 2

Studio 2 is great for focus groups, with a viewing room which can accommodate up to eight observers.

Studio 3

Click here to view our floor plan for Studio 3

Studio 3 is the smallest of the bunch, but its place on the ground floor also makes it the most easily accessible. It’s perfect for depths and smaller groups, and the viewing room seats up to six observers.

Our services

Everything you need

We’ll provide you with plenty of stationery and flip chart paper during your stay, as well as a TV screen if required, but if you need us to pick up anything specific ahead of your research – like some local stimulus or printing – just let us know and we’ll help you out as best we can!

Food for thought

We provide complimentary tea, coffee, fruit, crisps and biscuits to all of our guests to keep energy levels high, but if you’re looking for something more substantial we also offer options ranging from buffets prepared on-site to food from a variety of local restaurants.

Observe from anywhere

On-site observers will have everything they need to view the research, but if some of your colleagues are unable to make it to our facility you can book focus group streaming through our partners – Focus Vision and Stream Team. We also offer complimentary picture-in-picture web streaming for user-testing bookings.

Our Magic Marker

Each studio has one of these wonderfully simple, foot-operated devices. Every time a significant moment occurs during a group, the moderator can create a marking on the MP4 recording which can be viewed when played back using a compatible media player. It’s a real time-saver when it comes to analysing the groups or editing clips for the debrief.

User Research

Leave the tech to us

When your booking requires desktop or mobile user-testing, we provide our own laptop and peripherals as standard – all set up and ready to go when you arrive.  During your interviews we will take care of the picture-in-picture MP4 recordings.

Go mobile

Are you testing on a mobile device? No problem! Whether you bring your own or request that participants bring theirs, we’ll get it connected to our wi-fi network and provide a desk camera to capture footage of the device screen as the participant is using it.


If you already have a recruiter you trust in The Talking Shop areas, then you already have the ideal recruitment solution should you want to use one of our studios.

If you don’t know any recruiters in the area then we have good relationships with a number of recruiters and fieldwork agencies.  We can organise the whole recruitment process or simply put you in touch with a supplier so that you can sort it out directly – it’s entirely up to you.


We give moderators a chance to leave a note about their experience with us as we sign them out at the end of a booking, and here is a selection of the kind words we have received in their own words (and writing!):

Find us


By train: We are less than a 10-minute walk away from Manchester Victoria and Salford Central, and a short cab ride away from Manchester Piccadilly station.

Click here to view a map of nearby stations

By taxi: Chapel Street is a long one, so tell the driver that we are at the Blackfriars Street end, near Deansgate. Most cab drivers should also know The Lowry Hotel, which is close by.

By bus: The First 67 and 100 services run through Chapel Street and the bus stop right outside our facility (ID: MANGJMJG)

Parking before 5PM

For shorter visits during the day, we recommend using the Pay and Display meters on Bury Street and Blackfriars Road, which are £1 for each period of 40 minutes (so allow about £3 for a 1.5 hour session.)

The Q-Park Arena/Deansgate North is great for longer visits, which starts from £2 for 2 hours.

Click here to view a map of the route to/from the Q-Park

Parking after 5PM

For evening sessions, we offer supervised free parking in our own car park, located on the corner of Cross Street and Bury Street; a 2-minute walk away from our facility. The postcode for the car park is M3 7AX.

Click here to view a map of the route to/from our car park

There is also free parking available on single yellow lines after 6pm on Chapel Street and other side streets nearby.

Where to stay

Our facility is in central Manchester, meaning that there are a number of hotels, to suit every budget, within easy reach.

Contact us

You can e-mail us at with any enquiries that you may have, or call us on 0161 834 3396.

You can send us a simple message using the form below, or for a more detailed enquiry you can e-mail us at, or call us on 0161 834 3396.

Contact Us