Family things to do in Manchester and the North

Gemma Gibb, Families Editor

We preview all the fun at this year’s Handmade Parade and new festival line ups from Underneath The Stars and the BBC Summer Social.

Check out our free things to do in Manchester guides for more ideas.

Enjoy!

Here are our picks

More in Families

Activity 20 October 2018–31 December 2019, FREE

Documentary Challenge at IWM North

Make and feature in your own mini-documentary at IWM North.

A World Inside A Book courtesy Suzi Corker
Exhibitions 12 February–26 October 2019, from £6

A World Inside a Book: Gruffalo, Dragons and Other Creatures at Z-arts

The UK’s first immersive exhibition of the much-loved tales of Julia Donaldson and illustrator Axel Scheffler. Expect enchanting forests, miniature towns and watery worlds.

Families 3 March–2 November 2019, FREE

Dovetail, Biscuit, Splat at Nostell

From designing the highest quality furniture, to sourcing the latest fashions in wallpaper, textiles and fittings, Thomas Chippendale created a world of interiors for Nostell. Roll up your sleeves and discover the designer in you with creative family activities every school holiday

Families 7 April–24 December 2019, FREE

Explore & Draw stations at The Hepworth Wakefield

The Explore and Draw stations are open daily and are free to use.

Look out for Explore & Draw stations in The Hepworth Wakefield’s galleries. Borrow looking tools, handling objects and drawing materials to explore the galleries and create artworks.

The gallery have up to three stations in the galleries for you to use and explore. Each station links to their temporary exhibitions or collection displays and contains activities, objects and books related to the artworks. Enjoy drawing in the galleries, look in new ways at the artworks, feel objects and materials connected to exhibitions, or sit and read together.

Families 13 April 2019–25 January 2020, FREE

Family Fun at Pontefract Museum

Lively activity sessions that everyone can take part in.

Families 23 April–16 July 2019, FREE

Toddler Tuesdays at Castleford Museum

Pay a visit to Castleford Museum every Tuesday during Term Time for Toddler Tuesdays.

Families 1 May 2019–5 February 2020, FREE

Castle Crafts at Pontefract Castle

Get creative together and explore and learn about the history of Pontefract Castle through play or crafts. A different activity each month.

Little Moreton Hall
Activity 3 May–3 November 2019, FREE

Summer 2019 at Little Moreton Hall

With its beautifully charming and quirky style, Little Moreton Hall offers an iconic Tudor manor house, moat, manicured knot garden and plenty of fun activities for everyone.

GRUB Mayfield
Families 3 May–29 September 2019, FREE

Grub Food Fair at Mayfield

GRUB’s Food Fair returns to Mayfield Depot, with a bigger site and a huge array of top-class local food traders.

Culture Guides

Cinema

Music and movies intersect in our latest guide to cinema in Manchester and the North.

Exhibitions

Like the 58th Venice Biennale which opened earlier this May, our latest pick of exhibitions across the north also has a strong ecological bent.

Poet Rebecca Tamás at That's What She Said.

Literature

We’re in full festival swing with MIF’s first focus on live literature, and plenty of poetry and prose cropping up in the ‘burbs.

Music

Some of the world’s most exciting producers are heading to Manchester and the north in the coming months. Read about them here.

Theatre in Manchester

Theatre

Packed with experimental festival performances, an award-winning musical, feisty standup comedy and much more…it’s our new theatre guide.

Hatch

Food and Drink in Manchester and the North

Discover the best food and drink that the North has to offer in our expert guide to food and drink in Manchester and beyond.

tours and activities

Tours and Activities

Try something different in May with our round up of the month’s alternative Tours and Activities in Manchester.

Things to do right now

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Exhibitions 7 June–18 August 2019,

Peterloo 2019

Little Moreton Hall
Activity 3 May–3 November 2019, FREE

Summer 2019 at Little Moreton Hall

Exhibitions 6 April–29 September 2019, Quarry Bank admission prices apply (free for National Trust members)

Rights of the Child at Quarry Bank

Activity 20 October 2018–31 December 2019, FREE

Documentary Challenge at IWM North

Families 3 March–2 November 2019, FREE

Dovetail, Biscuit, Splat at Nostell

Families 1 May 2019–5 February 2020, FREE

Castle Crafts at Pontefract Castle