Updated: Saturday, 18th November 2017 @ 8:06am

Mark Cain death: Tributes pour in to Gay Village Velvet bar owner 'found hanged'

Mark Cain death: Tributes pour in to Gay Village Velvet bar owner 'found hanged'

| By Tommy Wilson

Tributes are pouring in following the death of Mark Cain, a successful businessman and highly popular figure in Manchester’s gay village who is believed to have hanged himself this weekend.

Mr Cain, who passed away at the weekend, was co-owner of Velvet, a popular hotel, bar and restaurant located on Canal Street in the heart of the LGBT district.

He was named in the top 50 Northern Restaurant and Bar (NRB) owners last year and was held in high regard by many people in the city.

Velvet's boutique hotel was ranked first out of 120 hotels in Manchester by TripAdvisor, whilst his restaurant earned plaudits from Top Table Diners.

Well-known figures took to Twitter to pay their respects to the entrepreneur, including Coronation Street actor Antony Cotton.

Mr Cain’s plans to build a 20-room hotel above his restaurant nearly failed to materialise in 2010, when a neighbouring bar owner collected a 3,000-name petition against his £3.5million project.

But it finally got the green light after he received backing from the Village Business Association and 10 letters of support.

Along with his thriving Canal Street business, Cain also opened a second restaurant two years ago - Velvet Central - which is located near Albert Square.

Popular Manchester DJ Dave Haslam said: "Shocking news that Mark Cain of Velvet and Velvet Hotel has died. He did great things. Love to his family and friends."

Oliver East, a former employee at Velvet said; "I worked at Velvet for two years, 15 years ago. Mark was a force. Loved that place."

Bernadette Kelly, director of Manchester-based marketing firm said: "Still trying to wrap my head around the loss of my beloved Mark Cain. He will be sorely missed by so many. And I'll miss that cheeky smile."

Chris Grimes, Director at Bitten Magazine, also paid his respects to the Velvet co-owner. He said: "Such sad news, Manchester has lost one of its characters."

Image courtesy of Mikey, with thanks.