Festivals and Events

Field trips.

Creative Tourist
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We think Manchester’s the greatest (of course) but sometimes even diehard Mancunians like us get wanderlust. Fortunately, we don’t have far to go for fantastic family cultural adventures…

This summer, we’ll be packing the kids into the car/bus/train and striking out for Leek, where the Just So Festival, a boutique weekend of creativity for kids and their families in an enchanted Staffordshire wood. This year’s festival features theatre and puppetry, children’s authors David Lucas and the Etherington Brothers, music for dancing from Polly and the Billets Doux and the Zen Hussies, plus lots of chances to get painty, muddy and inspired. It takes place 19-21 August at Barnswood, Staffordshire.Weekend tickets including 3 nights camping cost £80 for adults and £35 for children (under 3s free).

We’ll also be heading north for Lakes Alive, the summerlong programme of performance and arts events in the glorious setting of the Lake District. This year’s highlights include Zircus Plus (top), the contemporary circus festival in Barrow (15-17 July), magical nightime aerial shows above Whitehaven and Maryport harbours, a full-of-surprises family garden party to celebrate Lake District National Park’s 60th birthday (13 August) and the always-excellent Mintfest, Kendal’s International Festival of Street Arts (2-4 September).

Images courtesy Lakes Alive and Just So Festival

Culture Guides

Darling – Image courtesy of Grimmfest

Cinema

Summer might be on its last legs, but as the temperatures start to dip, the cinemas of the North are on hand to provide audiences with exciting films and a dry place to hide out.

Tim Etchells, Lets Pretend (Large) (2014), installation view, Grundy Art Gallery. Photo: Phill Heywood, courtesy Grundy Art Gallery.

Exhibitions

An overview of the current best exhibitions in Manchester and the North might be summed up in the following directive: think differently.

Image courtesy of Wild Rumpus

Families

Autumn is drawing in and half term adventures are on the horizon. Here are our top tips for outdoor and indoor hot tickets to book and do now.

Lemn Sissay at the 8th Black and Asian Writers Conference

Literature

From Rising Stars to World Literature, nothing says October in the Rainy City like Manchester Literature Festival. And the region is abuzz with words this month – and, in the case of the South Lakes, words and pictures.

Ramsbottom Festival - Image by Andrew Allcock

Music

As the festival season draws to a rainy close – with the odd Indian summer exception like Festival No 6 and Ramsbottom Festival – now is the time to enjoy your live music experience in more intimate surroundings.

The poster image for Giselle

Theatre

I don’t think there’s a more enticing time of year to visit the theatre than autumn – when the nights draw in it just feels more exciting to be sat in a theatre seat.

Destination Guides

Things to do right now

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