Our Advent Calendar continues, marking the cultural countdown to Christmas. Today: Memorial art and Media City
Some pretty special paintings are currently in residence at Manchester Art Gallery: on tour away from their usual home, the Sandham Memorial Chapel in Hampshire, Stanley Spencer’s stunning murals of his memories from World War One make up Heaven in a Hell of War. Unlike the gallery’s other, major exhibition A Sensory War, these paintings look away from the worst outcomes of conflict to humbler, domestic scenes away from the front. They are stunning works on large-scale, arched canvases. Don’t miss them. Manchester Art Gallery, 10am-5pm, free.
Do more. For something more festive, head to MediaCityUK. The annual ice rink is up and running at Manchester’s media hub, with food and drink offerings tacked on to the side. We say ice skating is more magical after dark – so don gloves (and possibly a pillow for your bum) and see how long you can stay upright. Good luck! Media City UK, 11am-9pm. Tickets £5 Mon-Fri; £7/£5 children Sat & Sun.