Unmissable things to do in Manchester and the North

Discover acclaimed music and stand-out exhibitions, groundbreaking theatre, family, cinema and literary events in Manchester and throughout the North.

We are so grateful for the support we’ve received from National Lottery players, The National Lottery, DCMS and Arts Council England to create our new Destination Guides. #HereForCulture

Yorkshire Sculpture International 2021
Exhibitions Until 19 September 2021, FREE

Yorkshire Sculpture International 2021

The second edition of Yorkshire Sculpture International – the UK’s largest dedicated sculpture festival – opens this summer.

Poet Gregory Woods
Literature 28 July 2021 7:00 pm, from £2

Carcanet online book launch: Records Of An Incitement To Silence by Gregory Woods

Celebrate the launch of Records Of An Incitement To Silence, the new Carcanet collection by poet and cultural historian Gregory Woods, and his sixth, with a live online reading hosted by poet Richard Scott.

Poet Henry Normal
Literature Until 1 September 2021, FREE

Henry Normal in conversation online

Join Henry Normal online every Wednesday from 14 July to 1 September as he chats and shares poems with award-winning wordsmiths from Salford’s Flapjack Press.

Writer Louise Finnigan.
Literature 20 August 2021 6:30 pm, FREE

Fly On The Wall Press showcase at Blackwell’s Manchester

Manchester-based not-for-profit publisher Fly On The Wall Press has teamed up with Blackwell’s Manchester to present this showcase of three exciting local authors, David Hartley, Louise Finnigan and Tina Tamsho-Thomas, who will be reading from their latest releases.

Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland
Theatre Until 7 August 2021, from £5.00

CANCELLED: Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland at Homeground

CANCELLED: We’re thrilled that a new adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s fantastical story will play in the open air in Manchester this summer. Perfect.

Refloresta! Maria Nepomuceno at The Portico Library
Exhibitions Until 22 November 2021, FREE

Refloresta! Maria Nepomuceno at The Portico Library in Manchester

The Portico Library presents an installation of immersive sculptural and textile works by world-renowned Brazilian artist Maria Nepomuceno.

British Textile Biennial 2021 – across Pennine Lancashire
Exhibitions 1–31 October 2021, FREE

British Textile Biennial 2021 – across Pennine Lancashire

British Textiles Biennial 2021 has an impressive list of headliners, including Maxine Peake, Lubaina Himid and fashion designer Patrick Grant.

Use Hearing Protection: The Early Years of Factory Records at the Science and Industry Museum
Exhibitions Until 3 January 2022, from £6

Use Hearing Protection: The Early Years of Factory Records at the Science and Industry Museum

Use Hearing Protection tells the story of Factory Records’ formative years from 1978-1982, when the label made waves with its innovative work in music, technology and design.

Just So Festival, Rode Hall Cheshire
Families 20–22 August 2021, from £20

Just So Festival

Just So Festival is back with bang for 2021 – promising a jolly knees up which is sure to entertain the entire family.

The Tiger Who Came to Tea and the adventures of Mog the Forgetful Cat at Z-arts
Families Until 4 September 2021, from £8

The Tiger Who Came to Tea and The Adventures of Mog the Forgetful Cat

Discover the magical world of Judith Kerr’s books and learn more about the life of their legendary author in this eagerly awaited exhibition.

Activity Until 30 July 2021, FREE

A Week with PINS from Brighter Sound

Brighter Sound are offering the chance for early career musicians aged 16-24 to spend a week creating, learning and collaborating with PINS.

Poet and performer Curtis Watt.
Literature Until 5 August 2021, FREE

A Lovely Word outdoors and online

A Lovely Word join forces with the Unusual Art Sourcing Company for two one-off specials taking spoken word outside – on Thursday 1 July at St James’ Gardens and on Thursday 5 August in Princes Park.

Grimm Tales: Witches, Wolves, Fairies and Frogs at Williamson Park
Theatre Until 22 August 2021, from £20.00

Grimm Tales: Witches, Wolves, Fairies and Frogs at Williamson Park

The shades and glades of Williamson Park will provide an atmospheric setting for this magical outdoor show.

Families Until 15 August 2021, from £13

Dino Kingdom

Calling archaeologists big and small! Dino Kingdom is taking over Wythenshawe Park and promises a meander with a difference. Take in an incredible 100 towering, roaring prehistoric beasts with your little ones in this one-of-a-kind magical kingdom.

Children's author and illustrator Rob Biddulph
Families Until 18 September 2021, FREE

Summer Reading Challenge with Manchester Libraries

Manchester Libraries invite all four to eleven year olds to join the free Summer Reading Challenge running for six weeks through the summer holidays, until 18 September.

Culture Guides

Cinema in Manchester and the North

Hong Kong classics, a John Carpenter marathon and an obscene midnight movie masterpiece all feature in this month’s cinema guide.

Rachel Kneebone: 399 Days at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Exhibitions

Tales of antiquity, cloud gazing, and a return to the forest all feature among this month’s hand-picked selection of exhibition highlights.

Grimm Tales: Witches, Wolves, Fairies and Frogs at Williamson Park

Families

With summer in full bloom in Costa del Manchester and the North, we round up our top alfresco activities to do with the family, plus exciting indoor offerings.

Writer Louise Finnigan.

Literature

As August approaches, the literature scene is promising some hot events, both online and in real life: with book launches, short story showcases, regular poetry chats, live readings and even an exhibition of word art…

Music

Outdoor shows, candle-lit jazz gigs, boozy all-dayers. Manchester and the North’s live music scene is making up for lost time.

Theatre in Manchester

Theatre

As some of our favourite theatre teams head back into the rehearsal room, we take a look ahead to some of the performances we’re most looking forward to, as well as the outdoor theatre happening now.

Classical Music in Manchester and the North

We preview the standout classical music events and venues in Manchester and the north.

Black Friar

Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

A guide to Food and Drink in Manchester and the North, including plenty of new bars and restaurants and exciting new menus from old favourites.

Online events

Discover the best things to do online from the organisations we love in Manchester and the North.

Tours and Activities

Summer is here and we’re so excited to be out in the world touring, making, playing and doing all the things Manchester and the North has to offer.

Welcome Back Manchester. It's Time To Restart.