The cafe in the trees at the Whitworth
Image courtesy of The Whitworth

Oxford Road, Manchester

Creative Tourist

Stretching all the way from the Curry Mile – with its glittering sari emporiums, Indian sweet shops and mixed reputation for actual curry – up toward the city centre, Oxford Road is not only home to two Universities, the Royal Northern College of Music, an Olympic-sized pool and a good number of the city’s best music venues, it’s also the busiest bus route in Europe. Yes, this is student land, but cultural institutions such as The Whitworth art gallery, Manchester Museum and International Anthony Burgess Centre also make the area a real draw for locals and tourists alike. There are also two parks: Whitworth Park, which dates back to 1890, and Grosvenor Square, a small patch of green that was once a church and where now, on sunny days, the locals come out to bask in bookish style.

The Oxford Road Corridor is the site of serious scientific innovation; here, you can visit the place where the atom was split, and doff your cap to the building dedicated to pioneering computer scientist and code breaker Alan Turing. Once home to philosopher Friedrich Engels and writer Elizabeth Gaskell, the area can boast its fair share of artistic prestige, too. Here, history and innovation still exist side by side.

Discover our top picks

Theatre 4–18 March 2017, from £10.00

City of Glass at HOME

This multi-layered meta show from 59 Productions has as many thrills as any good detective tome, only with added weirdness as fractured central character Dan Quinn loses the plot – quite literally.

Cinema 31 March–17 April 2017, from £5.00

¡Viva! Spanish & Latin American Festival at HOME: Film Programme

HOME’s annual celebration of the best in new Spanish and Latin American filmmaking returns with an exciting line-up of UK premieres, one off events and filmmaker Q&As.

Cinema 5–19 March 2017, from £5.00

Paul Auster: Man of Cinema at HOME

Paul Auster has a long association with cinema, as source material, screenwriter and also as a film director in his own right. This March, Home presents an Auster-inspired film season with titles chosen by the novelist himself.

Exhibitions 19 November 2016–16 April 2017, FREE

Artist Rooms: Andy Warhol at the Whitworth

If you’ve seen one exhibition about Andy Warhol, you’ve seen a thousand… Not so with ARTIST ROOMS: Andy Warhol at the Whitworth, which brings the master of repetition’s work into an entirely new context.

Exhibitions 16 November 2016–1 July 2017, FREE

After The Bees at Manchester Museum

This exhibition explores the haunting consequences of a world without bees through a series of photographs and artworks.

Exhibitions 11 March 2017, FREE

Stuart Semple: Happy Cloud

Are you happy? That’s the question Stuart Semple is asking in his art installation Happy Cloud, which floats thousands of smiley faces into the sky.

Theatre 15 March 2017, from £7.00

The Game at Contact

The Game addresses the problems of prostitution by turning men from passive consumers to active participants in the outcomes.

Theatre 16–17 March 2017, from £7.00

Hetain Patel: American Man at Contact

Hetain Patel has a new super power: he’s disguised himself as a white man, to fit in with the while world. American Man takes on issues around race, gender and political correctness that we’re normally too embarrassed (or scared) to talk about.

Theatre 24 March 2017, from £10.00

Michael Essien I want to play as you at Contact

There;s a lot of money in Football, but also a lot of exploitation as Michael Essien I Want to Play as You… reveals.

Theatre 25 March 2017, from £10.00

Five Easy Pieces at HOME

Dark and deadly work from Milo Rau that sees kids re-enact the life and times of a child killer. Disturbing stuff indeed.

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