It’s Father’s Day in Manchester and the North this weekend, in other places too, but that’s none of our concern. Have you already got your gift nicely wrapped and reservations made? Of course not, that’s why you’re here.
Resist the last minute urge to climb the escalator upward to Marks & Spencer’s men’s section. Do not reach for the credit card and start desperately tapping away on Amazon. No new ties, no pairs of Pringle socks and for God’s sake, not one more novelty mug.
Get out and about and spend some quality time with the Old Man.
Here are our picks
Bundobust Manchester, 61 Piccadilly, Manchester, M1 2AG - Visit now
Last year we recommended Manchester House for the perfect Father’s Day meal, and, while we’re sure you enjoyed the shamelessly extravagant experience, maybe you’re looking for something a little more wallet-friendly this year?
No probs. How about that crazy vegetarian curry place which you’ve heard so much about? Seriously, leave those preconceptions at the door, nay-sayers, Bundobust is something special.
Piccadilly Records, 53 Oldham Street, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 1JR - Visit now
Whether it will actually ever touch a needle or not is irrelevant, let your Dad relive the youthful joy of unwrapping a fresh slab of vinyl.
If you have one of those uses-more-instagram-hashtags-than-a-tattooed-twenty-something type Dads, try Kamasi Washington’s Heaven & Earth. Alternatively, Johnny Marr’s new record is out today and they’ll be an in-store signing session on Monday from midday.
Rapha Clubhouse Manchester, 5 St Ann’s Passage, Manchester, M2 6AD - Visit now
Cycling culture in Britain has exploded over the last decade or so, with Dads’ the least able to resist the allure of the Lycra. Your average man having a midlife crisis is far more likely to be found comparing the weight of the forks on his carbon fibre road bike than he is thumbing the pages of a Mazda MX-5 sales manual. This is a (mostly) good thing and should be encouraged. Stop by Manchester’s Rapha Clubhouse and make sure he’s kitted out in the most stylish finery for those gruelling hill climbs.
The coffee here is excellent too.
Road trip! Well, train journey anyway. Manchester Literature Festival and Northern commissioned poet Helen Mort to write about the journey from Manchester to Hebden Bridge. Courtesy of MLF and Northern, you can explore the Calder Valley’s rich literary heritage with a special trail and map.
If trains and poetry are not father’s thing, here’s some ideas for going rural without straying too far from the city.
Heiner Goebbels new large-scale work, presented with Manchester International Festival, will receive its world premiere in the city this autumn. Book this one now and have something to look forward to later in the year. I’m told that it’ll be something special.
My personal favorite way to spend time with my Dad is at breakfast. Manchester is strong with the breakfast force, and has some impressive form where brunch is concerned too. Top tip: if you see your Dad early in the morning, you pretty much get the rest of the day to yourself (love you Dad).
Give it a heartfelt, handwritten inscription and you can’t really go wrong with a book. Also, it’s Independent Bookshop Week so you can buy now and post about how great you are on the Internet next week. You’re welcome.
The Briton’s Protection, 50 Great Bridgewater St, Manchester, Greater Manchester, M1 5LE - Visit now
If all else fails, what could be better than taking your Dad for a pint? There’s many-a-pub to choose from but Briton’s is a safe bet. So safe in fact that we’re reusing the same pick from 2017. From cheap fizzy lager to guest ales and a mere 300 whiskeys to choose from.