Come As You Are socially-distanced weekender

August Bank Holiday in Manchester and the North

Ben Williams, Managing Editor

August Bank Holiday weekend is upon us, and while things aren’t quite back to normal yet, it does seem like this final bank holiday of the summer months will be the best one of 2020. Look, we know that isn’t saying very much, but there are lots of great things happening this weekend, so there’s no reason to spend it indoors rage-tweeting about a government special advisor like you did the last one!

Galleries and museums are joining restaurants, bars and pubs in slowly reopening, which means there’s plenty of socially distanced fun to go round. If you are heading out, please check if you need to book your spot first, and, if your plans do change and you need to cancel, then please let the venue know. We are hearing about lots of people not turning up for their bookings and it’s very frustrating for attractions and businesses who are desperate to get as many people through their doors as they can.

Whatever you do, have a great weekend and be kind to each other.

Here are our top picks of the best things to do this August Bank Holiday Weekend.

Here are our picks

  • 1. What is Manchester Art Gallery? at Manchester Art Gallery

    What is Manchester Art Gallery?
    Photography Andrew Brooks

    What is Manchester Art Gallery? at Manchester Art Gallery, Chinatown, Until 31 January 2023, free entry - Visit now

    Manchester Art Gallery has reopened with a thought-provoking new exhibition that delves into the history of the public institution and its role within the city. You need to book your free slot, but there’s good availability for the entire weekend. Just remember that the gallery is closed on Monday.


  • 2. Beer Gardens in Manchester & Salford

    The sun is threatening to come out this weekend, here are some more great places where you can enjoy a drink outdoors in Manchester and Salford. Remember, if your pint does take a couple of extra minutes to arrive, don’t get stressed, these are trying times! Enjoy just being in the pub after months solitary confinement.

  • 3. Alcohol Delivery in Manchester

    Alcohol Delivery in Manchester

    However, if you’re not ready to get out there and be socially distant in the many excellent bars and pubs which have reopened, then kick back and bring the pub to you. Here are some of the best alcohol delivery options in Manchester.

  • 4. Homemakers

    online events I am falling in love with you and its making me do stupid things
    Bryony Kimmings in I am falling in love with you and its making me do stupid things

    Homemakers, online, Until 31 July 2021 - Book now

    There are still plenty of great things to do online if you’re still happiest in your own living room. HOME’s Homemakers series is a good place to start for locally-produced online entertainment.

  • 5. GRUB Manchester

    GRUB Manchester, 50 Red Bank, Cheetham Hill, Manchester, M4 4HF - Visit now

    Manchester’s legendary independent street food festival GRUB found a permanent home in the Green Quarter earlier this year. They set up GRUB-E-MART during locked down and kept up the spirits of both independent traders and punters alike. Go pay them a visit in person.

  • 6. Art Galleries in Manchester & Salford

    The Whitworth
    The Whitworth. Photo: Alan Williams.

    That’s right, art galleries in Manchester and Salford are slowly beginning to reopen as lockdown begins to ease. Here’s what we know so far.

  • 7. Best places to drink outside in Liverpool

    The garden at Free State Kitchen
    The Bombed Out Church Garden Bar. Photo © Vicky Andrews

    If you do decide to see one of the many excellent exhibitions in Liverpool, check out our guide to outside spaces where you can get a good drink afterwards (or before… there’s no judgement here).

  • 8. Art Galleries in Leeds

    Leeds Art Gallery, galleries in Leeds

    Leeds and its surrounding region is bursting with some of the best galleries and art centres in the North – and they’re beginning to reopen. Here’s where you can go this weekend. We highly recommend The High Dam which is the latest work by upcoming artist Emii Alraihas and been extended until the end of November at The Tetley.