things to do in october
Everything that happened and would happen at Mayfield © Killa Schuetze

October

Creative Tourist

There’s plenty of things to do this October in Manchester and the North as the galleries and auditoriums step up and start knocking out some of the year’s best work.

We say goodbye to Liverpool Biennial this month, if you’ve still not been you’ll be after our weekend guide. But as we say goodbye to the Biennial, we say hello, hello to great new seasons from Contact, RNCM, The Stoller Hall, BBC Philharmonic, Everyman & Playhouse and many more.

Elsewhere there’s literature festivals in Manchester and Rochdale, Art Fairs, Craft Fairs and Folk Festivals.

Really, there’s just absolutely loads on this month and you owe it to yourself to get involved.

The October Longlist

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Black History Month HOME - Barbershop
Cinema Until 31 October 2021, from £7.50

Black History Month 2021: Film Programme at HOME

For Black History Month, HOME presents examples of joy, love and light from the history of Black cinema.

British Textile Biennial 2021 – across Pennine Lancashire
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, FREE

British Textile Biennial 2021 – across Pennine Lancashire

British Textiles Biennial 2021 has an impressive list of headliners, including Maxine Peake, Lubaina Himid and fashion designer Patrick Grant.

Literature Until 31 October 2021, FREE

Wakefield WordFest

WordFest is a festival celebrating the spoken and written word in all its forms and its important place in our culture.

Cassils: Human Measure at HOME
Exhibitions Until 12 December 2021, FREE

Cassils: Human Measure at HOME

Curated by Bren O’Callaghan, renowned transgender visual artist Cassils brings their first UK solo exhibition and contemporary dance piece to HOME.

Exhibitions Until 5 February 2022, FREE

Pushing Paper: Contemporary drawing from 1970 to now

Pushing paper is an exhibition that explores the past 50 years of drawing, catch it at the Cooper Gallery this winter.

Activity Until 6 December 2021, from £45

Candle Making with Cedar Manchester

Create your own bespoke scented candle with Lizzy from Cedar Manchester and their excellent candle making workshop.

Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre: Season of Dance
Dance Until 23 December 2021, from £5

Stanley & Audrey Burton Theatre: Season of Dance

The spectacular season of dance includes DeNada Dance Theatre, Northern Ballet, Ballet Cymru and Humanoove, alongside free performances happening as part of Light Night Leeds 2021.

Synagogue Nights at Manchester Jewish Museum
Music Until 2 December 2021, from £6.00

Synagogue Nights at Manchester Jewish Museum

An intimate series of evening events taking place in the atmospheric and beautiful surroundings of Manchester Jewish Museum. Step out and experience something new.

Exhibitions Until 30 October 2021, FREE

Lightpool Festival

Taking place during Blackpool’s annual Illuminations display, Lightpool is a celebration of spectacular art works and live, illuminated performance across the iconic town.

Deborah Roberts: A Look Inside at the Bluecoat, Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 23 January 2022, FREE

Deborah Roberts: A Look Inside at the Bluecoat, Liverpool

The first major UK solo exhibition of work by award-winning artist Deborah Roberts challenges notions of the body, beauty, race and identity.

Rosa-Johan Uddoh: Practice Makes Perfect at the Bluecoat in Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 23 January 2022, FREE

Rosa-Johan Uddoh: Practice Makes Perfect at the Bluecoat in Liverpool

Rosa-Johan Uddoh’s exhibition ‘Practice Makes Perfect’ at the Bluecoat responds to the lack of Black British history taught in schools.

Jock McFadyen at the Lowry
Activity Until 27 February 2022,

Jock McFadyen Goes to the Lowry

Scottish artist, Jock McFadyen, displays key work from throughout his life at The Lowry Galleries, home to one of his artistic influences, LS Lowry.

John Powell-Jones: CYBERJUNK at Castlefield Gallery in Manchester
Exhibitions Until 19 December 2021, FREE

John Powell-Jones: CYBERJUNK at Castlefield Gallery in Manchester

John Powell-Jones’ first major exhibition transports visitors to the inhospitable planet of Durt, 1,000 years after the Quantum Crash.

Black Gold Arts Festival 2021
Dance Until 29 October 2021, from £5.00

Black Gold Arts Festival 2021 with Contact

An outstanding festival line-up of Black-led art, performance and film which includes a live premiere of mandla rae’s as british as a watermelon.

Lucy McKenzie at Tate Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 27 February 2022, from £9

Lucy McKenzie at Tate Liverpool

Spanning post-war muralism, fashion, music subcultures, gender politics and more, Lucy McKenzie’s first UK retrospective is not to be missed.

Completely A Hustling Place at Manchester Central Library
Exhibitions Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Completely A Hustling Place at Manchester Central Library

Venture Arts presents a full studio exhibition at Manchester Central Library, where you can experience brand new work from over 70 artists.

Toria Garbutt
Literature Until 17 February 2022, from £10

Spoken Word at the Mansion House

The Reader’s Spoken Word evenings at the Mansion House in south Liverpool’s Calderstones Park are back inside, with a packed line-up running into the New Year.

River of Light Festival – Liverpool
Activity Until 7 November 2021, FREE

River of Light Festival – Liverpool

Bringing together 11 stunning audio and visual installations, the River of Light trail will mark the first anniversary of the start of lockdown, symbolising light and renewal for the city.

Edgelands: The Unofficial Countryside & The Wild Enclosed at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions Until 30 October 2021, FREE

Edgelands: The Unofficial Countryside & The Wild Enclosed at Manchester Art Gallery

Jacob Cartwright and Nick Jordan present two new films exploring the ‘edgeland’ landscapes close to their studio in Manchester.

October Half-term at the Science and Industry museum
Activity Until 31 October 2021, FREE

October Half Term at the Science and Industry Museum

Join the Science and Industry Museum this October half term for a safe, scientific and inspiring day out.

Electric Gamebox at the arndale
Childrens Until 22 October 2022, from £5.00

Electric Gamebox at The Arndale

Get ready for an immersive, digital, gaming adventure at the Arndale Centre in Manchester.

Childrens Until 31 October 2021, from £4

The Pumpkin Patch at Tatton Park

This October Half Term head to the Pumpkin Patch at Tatton Park Farm, where you can pick a perfect pumpkin, meet your favourite farmyard friends and head to the Medieval Old Hall for The Lost Crystal quest through Tatton’s medieval grounds.

Activity Until 27 November 2021,

Northern Monk Brewery Tour

Northern Monk, one of Leeds’ best breweries, is kicking off the weekend with a brewery tour to kick start your Saturday afternoon.

tim burton showroom
Childrens Until 31 October 2021, from £4.50

Strange and Unusual: A Tim Burton Half Term Double Bill at Showroom Cinema

Join Showroom this half term break for a spooky double bill of Tim Burton films in the run up to Halloween.

The Cat and the Canary at Manchester Opera House
Theatre Until 30 October 2021, from £13.00

The Cat and the Canary at Manchester Opera House

Set in a creaking mansion, this creepy whodunnit makes its way into Manchester just in time for Halloween.

Halloween at the Old Hall: The Lost Crystal at Tatton Park
Families Until 31 October 2021, from £18.00

Halloween at the Old Hall: The Lost Crystal at Tatton Park

Looking for a family-friendly Halloween adventure? Join Rusticus Arts for a magical quest around Tatton Park’s Medieval Old Hall.

Future Ages Will Wonder at FACT in Liverpool
Exhibitions 28 October 2021–20 February 2022, FREE

Future Ages Will Wonder at FACT in Liverpool

FACT presents an ‘alternative museum’ of artworks that question our past and offer new ways of understanding who we are.

Winter Droving Penrith
Families 28–30 October 2021, FREE

The Winter Droving in Penrith

An incredible wonderland of outdoor arts, masquerade and pint carrying competitions in Penrith.

Titane
Cinema 28–31 October 2021, from £7.50

FilmFear at HOME

FilmFear is back as HOME team up with Film4 for another season of new and classic scary movies, premieres and director Q&As.

Halloween Ghost Train
Childrens 28–30 October 2021, from £12.90

Halloween Ghost Train at The East Lancashire Railway

Climb aboard the hair-raisingly spooky Halloween Ghost Train at the East Lancashire Railway this October half-term and expect a journey of spooktacular fun and delight!

Ana Silvera: Ladino Laments and Love Songs at Manchester Jewish Museum
Music 28 October 2021 7:00 pm, from £5.00

Ana Silvera: Ladino Laments and Love Songs at Manchester Jewish Museum

London-born singer-songwriter and composer Ana Silvera will explore her Sephardi heritage through traditional ladino songs and original tunes.

Poet Malika Booker.
Literature 28 October 2021 7:00 pm, FREE

Poetry London at Manchester Poetry Library

Poetry London will be launching its 100th issue in the UK’s major poetry libraries; key among them the brand-new Manchester Poetry Library.

Comedy 28 October 2021 7:00 pm, from £10.00

Cultural Comedy Tours featuring Hannah Platt and Foxdog Studios

Cultural Comedy Tours offers entertaining guided tours of galleries, museums and other cultural heritage sites, conducted by professional comedians. Thursday’s tours at Salford Museum and Art Gallery are hosted by Hannah Platt and Foxdog Studios.

Cinema 29 October–4 November 2021, from £7.50

Seven Samurai at HOME

Kurosawa expertly sustains the suspense over a lengthy duration, imbuing this classic story with an almost Shakespearian grandeur.

Tales from the Congo Basin at HOME
Theatre 29 October 2021 2:00 pm, from £5.00

Tales from the Congo Basin at HOME

Join storyteller and musician Emmanuela Yogolelo for a session exploring the traditions of songs and storytelling in the Congo Basin, Africa.

Festivals 29–31 October 2021, from £11

Fat Out Fest 2021

This October welcomes the live return of Fat Out Fest, bringing all the noise, queer energy and mayhem to Salford over Halloween weekend.

Cinema 29 October 2021 7:00 pm, from £10.00

OST Presents: Granfalloon Plays the Music of David Lynch // Eraserhead at The Yard

Granfalloon (AKA Richard Lomax) and his collaborators Dom Major + Chloe Jones perform a special set of songs from the legendary director David Lynch’s body of work.

The Nobodies at The Edge
Theatre 29–30 October 2021, from £12.00

The Nobodies at The Edge

Exciting and terrifying in equal measure, with a good dash of humour, this award-winning play asks what does it take to enact real change? And what would you sacrifice to keep it?

Château Ghoul at The Lowry
Theatre 29–30 October 2021, from £18

Château Ghoul at The Lowry

Looking for laughs this Halloween? Check out this haunted house-style comedy from the multi award-winning duo, LipService Theatre.

Activity 29 October 2021 9:00 pm, from £8.00

Gal-oween with Girl Gang

Bring your ghoulish gals and supernatural pals for a Gal-oween Girl Gang spectacular, in the middle of the Northern Quarter.

Halloween in the City
Childrens 30–31 October 2021, FREE

Halloween in the City 2021

Halloween In The City is back to haunt Manchester over the Halloween weekend, with a petrifying programme of Halloween-themed events taking place across Manchester city centre.

Nightmare on RAD Street
Cinema 30 October 2021 4:00 pm, from £5.5

Nightmare on RAD Street at Chapeltown Picture House

RAD Screenings deliver an all afternoon festival of 80’s hair metal horrors that will see you through the devils night into the twilight of Halloween itself.

Grimmfest/ J-Horror Day
Cinema 31 October 2021 9:00 pm, from £8.75

Grimmfest/ J-Horror Day at Stockport Plaza

This Halloween, Grimmfest presents a quartet of modern Japanese horror films at Stockport Plaza.

Still showing this month

Flecky Bennett’s HALLOWEEN 2018 Ghost Walk
Activity Until 13 May 2022, from £15

Flecky Bennett’s Ghost Walks

Meet, Flecky Bennet, your guide through the dark and demonic side of the city as he takes you on one of Manchester’s award winning ghost walks.

Damien Hirst at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions Until 31 May 2023, FREE

Damien Hirst at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Experience YBA artist Damien Hirst’s towering and provocative outdoor sculptures at Yorkshire Sculpture Park.

Trading Station: how hot drinks shape our lives – exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions Until 14 December 2021, FREE

Trading Station: how hot drinks shape our lives at Manchester Art Gallery

Trading Station at Manchester Art Gallery charts the history and changing social role of hot drinks in our lives.

These Lancashire Women are Witches in Politics with The Turnpike
Exhibitions Until 31 January 2022, FREE

These Lancashire Women are Witches in Politics with The Turnpike

A collaborative project that takes inspiration from the history of the Leigh Female Reformers of 1819 and the monstrous representations of them in the media of the time.

Rock and Goal
Activity Until 27 February 2022, from £4.50

Rock and Goal Tour

Join Joe Feeley a Mancunian through and through, who guides you into Manchester’s two pillars of cultural excellence with his Rock and Goal tour.

Activity Until 26 March 2022,

Curious About Leeds, Self guided walking tour of Leeds

Alternative to walking tour guides, Curious about Leeds give you the materials to experience Leeds’ heritage in your own time with their self guided tours.

Literature Until 5 February 2025, FREE

The Little Library in Spinningfields

Take your pick from The Little Library’s carefully curated collection of classics and new releases, adding a recently read book of your own as a replacement.

Joana Vasconcelos exhibition at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions Until 9 January 2022, FREE

Joana Vasconcelos at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Yorkshire Sculpture Park presents the monumental work of celebrated Portuguese sculptor Joana Vasconcelos.

Below the Salt Online Exhibition
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021,

Below the Salt Online Exhibition

Below the Salt is an exhibition of new works by Catherine Bertola, shown alongside the first inventory of Temple Newsam House, made on 12 September 1520.

sounds of our city online exhibition
Exhibitions Until 31 December 2021,

Sounds of Our City Online Exhibition

The Sounds of Our City Online Exhibition gives you a chance to visit the current exhibition at Abbey House Museum virtually. Find out how the different musical styles and venues of Leeds interact.

What is Manchester Art Gallery?
Exhibitions Until 31 January 2023, FREE

What is Manchester Art Gallery? at Manchester Art Gallery

Manchester Art Gallery reopens with a thought-provoking new exhibition that delves into the history of the public institution and its role within the city.

#WELCOME? at the People's History Museum
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, FREE

#WELCOME? at the People’s History Museum

#WELCOME? at the People’s History Museum explores the wider impact of media coverage and changing immigration controls.

Activity Until 27 February 2022, from £13.50

Shiverpool: Ghost and History Tours

Expect chilling street theatre and immersive thrills as the award winning Shiverpool return to Liverpool’s streets.

Thwaite at 30 online exhibition
Exhibitions Until 1 December 2021,

Thwaite at 30 at Thwaite Watermill

In the Thwaite at 30 online exhibition, uncover the fascinating story of Thwaite Watermill as it celebrates its 30th year as a museum.

Blackburn Open Walls
Activity Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Blackburn Open Walls

Over 3 years, forgotten walls of Blackburn were brought to life with the creation of a vibrant outdoor gallery, by international, national and local artists, who together over 2 weeks, created a collection of large scale murals and art walk trails for the residents and visitors of Blackburn to enjoy.

families at the national history museum
Families Until 1 January 2022,

Families at the National Football Museum

Bring your football-loving family for a visit to England’s one and only national museum for football, with activities for families available throughout the museum.

Pendle Witch Experience Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £18

Pendle Hill Witch Experience Tours

Group tours of Lancashire in the area surrounding Pendle Hill. Through visiting the countryside and villages of Pendle, visitors learn all about the dark deeds and wicked plots surrounding the Pendle Witches in the 1600s.

Literature Until 31 October 2021, FREE

Raw Milk online

With the support of Manchester Independents, Kate Feld’s project is a chronicle of the writer’s experiences during the winter of 2020-21, documenting a single mother’s lived experience of the structural inequalities laid bare by the pandemic and offering a harrowing case study of how capitalism fails women.

Discover Buxton Tram Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £80

Discover Buxton Tram Tours

Enjoy a journey through time on Discover Buxton Tour’s unique vintage tram.

Discover Buxton Character Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £15

Discover Buxton Character Tours

These colourful character guides offer unique and entertaining insights into the history of some of Buxton’s most iconic buildings.

Discover Buxton Walking Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £10

Discover Buxton Walking Tours

Have your history delivered by expert guides whose passion for the heritage of Buxton spills into the unexpected.

Discover Buxton Roman Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £15

Discover Buxton Roman Tours

Join local historian Brian Shepherd for a walk around the town and learn what Buxton may have looked like during Britain’s Roman occupation.

Discover Buxton Audio Tours
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £10

Discover Buxton Audio Tours

Discover Buxton’s audio tours of The Peak cover the area around Buxton and are designed to be enjoyed from the comfort of your own vehicle.

Hardeep Sahota: Bhangra Lexicon – Online
Dance Until 1 April 2022, FREE

Hardeep Sahota: Bhangra Lexicon – Online

The world’s first ‘visual dictionary’ of movements found within Bhangra, compiled by World Bhangra Day founder, Hardeep Sahota.

doodle den at people's history museum, young girl using thick marker pen to drawer on a glass panel
Activity Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Doodle Den: Playful Protests Online

Pick up a pen and encourage the whole family to explore the art of peaceful protest.

Science Learning at Home with Jodrell Bank
Activity Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Science Learning at Home with Jodrell Bank

Science Learning at Home with Jodrell Bank is a perfect way to keep children (and their adults) busy while learning from home.

Cinema Until 21 February 2022, FREE

Queer Treatment

To coincide with LGBT History Month, Heart of Glass launches Queer Treatment, a new animated short film by the amazing Amy Pennington. Queer Treatment is inspired by conversations with members of the LGBTQIA+ community and explores connection, identity, representation and celebrating queer icons past and present.

PUSH Festival - HOME
Festivals Until 31 December 2021,

PUSH Festival 2021 at HOME

Thrilling and challenging, HOME’s annual festival is a glimmering reminder that new performance continues to be developed, despite ‘you-know-what’.

Tai Shani: The Neon Hieroglyph – Online with Manchester International Festival Virtual Factory
Exhibitions Until 31 March 2022, FREE

Tai Shani: The Neon Hieroglyph – Online with Manchester International Festival Virtual Factory

Turner Prize winning artist Tai Shani takes us on an LSD-inspired hallucinatory journey across time and space. Prepare to have your consciousness expanded.

Ad Minoliti at BALTIC in Gateshead
Exhibitions Until 13 March 2022, FREE

Ad Minoliti at BALTIC in Gateshead

Argentinian artist Ad Minoliti’s immersive exhibition draws upon queer and feminist theory to offer new understandings of the world around us.

Elizabeth Gaskell's House garden. Photo by Chris Tucker
Literature Until 12 December 2021, from £4.50

Book sale at Elizabeth Gaskell’s House

Elizabeth Gaskell’s House and award-winning garden is a must-see, with the famous book sale back on 18 April and scheduled thereafter for 9 May, 13 June, 11 July, 8 August, 12 September, 10 October, 14 November and 12 December 2021, 11am-4pm.

Mindscapes While Waiting, Wait Here
Visual Arts Until 16 May 2022, FREE

MINDSCAPES: While Waiting, Wait Here – Merel Smitt

Created in collaboration with service users and staff, this online interactive game explores the benefits system and the process of applying for Universal Credit.

Mindscapes //OUTSIDEIN//
Visual Arts Until 16 May 2022, FREE

MINDSCAPES: //OUTSIDEIN// – Theater DEGASTEN

A brand-new online work, by Amsterdam-based Theater DEGASTEN, exploring the connection between mental health and where we live.

POSTPONED – AI: More than Human at World Museum Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, from £5

AI: More than Human at World Museum Liverpool

Barbican’s major exhibition, AI: More than Human, comes to Liverpool, offering a tantlising look into the future.

Grayson's Art Club at Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, FREE

Grayson’s Art Club at Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester

Turner Prize-winning artist Grayson Perry presents a major exhibition at Manchester Art Gallery featuring work made by the nation during the initial weeks of lockdown.

More in Common: In memory of Jo Cox at People's History Museum, Manchester
Exhibitions Until 24 April 2022, FREE

More in Common: In memory of Jo Cox at People’s History Museum, Manchester

An exhibition inspired by the legacy of Jo Cox MP and which represents the culmination of a community-led project involving over 30 people who made the city their home.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £15

Embroidery with Sara Dennis at Lancaster Castle

Learn embroidery in a fun and relaxed environment with the BBC’s Sara Dennis at Lancaster Castle’s famous Witches Tower.

Jade Montserrat Constellations: Care & Resistance at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Jade Montserrat Constellations: Care & Resistance at Manchester Art Gallery

Part gallery, part studio, ‘Constellations: Care & Resistance’ showcases Jade Monserratt’s work exploring race, the body and language.

Barbara Hepworth: Art & Life
Exhibitions Until 27 February 2022,

Barbara Hepworth: Art & Life at The Hepworth Wakefield

The Hepworth Wakefield celebrates its 10th birthday with the largest exhibition of Barbara Hepworth’s work since the artist’s death in 1975.

archive open saturdays at sunny bank mills
Exhibitions Until 27 November 2021,

Archive Open Saturdays at Sunny Bank Mills

Discover the unique history of a textile mill and the community that surrounds it at the Sunny Bank Mills Archive Open Saturdays.

English Football Hall of Fame
Exhibitions Until 31 March 2022, from £5.5

English Football Hall of Fame

National Football Museum’s English Football Hall of Fame celebrates the great game. A full-scale exhibition showcasing some of those who’ve made an outstanding contribution to football.

Visual Arts Until 1 December 2022, from £20

Graffiti at Zap Graffiti

Liverpool’s Zap Graffiti teaches all the basic skills and techniques you need to make a street-style creation you’ll be proud of.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £95

Blacksmithing at Forge Four

This beginners workshop will teach participants the traditional skills associated with blacksmithing, in the ‘Steel City’ of Sheffield.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, FREE

Stone carving at West Riding Stonecarving Association

The West Riding Stonecarving Association is dedicated to keeping the art of hand-carving stone alive and bringing it to the general public.

Textile taxidermy
Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £80

Textile taxidermy with Jaki Bogg at Craven Arts Studios

Head to Skipton’s Craven Arts Studios to create a unique mounted animal head for your home with local textile artist Jaki Bogg.

You Belong Here: Artists Rediscovering Salford’s Green Spaces at Salford Museum & Art Gallery
Exhibitions Until 28 November 2021, FREE

You Belong Here: Artists Rediscovering Salford’s Green Spaces at Salford Museum & Art Gallery

Salford Museum & Art Gallery presents an exhibition that highlights the city’s green spaces and the stories that they tell.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £13

Candle making at Cheshire Workshops

Try your hand at candle making with the experts at Cheshire Workshops, this fun and creative skill is suitable for all ages.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £20

Pottery at Earth Pig Pottery and Fine Art in Buxton

Try your hand at pottery at Earth Pig Studio in Buxton’s Green Man Gallery; a longstanding community arts hub, shop and gallery.

tours and activities
Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £50

Eat The City – Scranchester Tours

Satisfy your hunger for knowledge as well as lunch with Scranchester’s food tours of the city centre. You may discover a new favourite hidden gem or learn a bit more about the cultural or historical significance of the food you eat all the time.

Silence – Alone in a World of Wounds
Exhibitions Until 5 June 2023,

Silence – Alone in a World of Wounds at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Stop and spend an hour or two with this special creation, nestled within a stand of birch trees beside Yorkshire Sculpture Park’s Upper Lake.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £60

Glass fusing at Glassmonkey Studio

Come and experience the magic of fused glass at Glass Monkey Studio in Burnley, where workshops cater for all levels and abilities.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £59

Making silver stacker rings at The Old Granary

One of many workshops hosted by local jeweller Helen Drye, here you’ll learn the technical skills required to make a chic stacker ring.

David Nash, Running Table, Grizedale, 2021
Exhibitions Until 12 December 2021, FREE

David Nash: Return to the Forest at Grizedale Sculpture in Cumbria

Return to the Forest captures a seminal moment in the development of one of Britain’s most important contemporary sculptors.

Exhibitions Until 3 January 2022, from £6

Use Hearing Protection: The Early Years of Factory Records at the Science and Industry Museum

Use Hearing Protection tells the story of Factory Records’ formative years from 1978-1982, when the label made waves with its innovative work in music, technology and design.

Suzanne Lacy: Cleaning Conditions and Uncertain Futures at Manchester Art Gallery
Exhibitions Until 31 December 2021, FREE

Suzanne Lacy: Cleaning Conditions and Uncertain Futures at Manchester Art Gallery

Cleaning Conditions and Uncertain Futures at Manchester Art Gallery brings together two of artist Suzanne Lacy’s Manchester-based projects.

Sutapa Biswas: Lumen at BALTIC, Gateshead
Exhibitions Until 20 March 2022, FREE

Sutapa Biswas: Lumen at BALTIC, Gateshead

Sutapa Biswas’ major solo show explores the artist’s role in illuminating the imperialist structures that still exist within British society.

Refloresta! Maria Nepomuceno at The Portico Library
Exhibitions Until 22 November 2021, FREE

Refloresta! Maria Nepomuceno at The Portico Library in Manchester

The Portico Library presents an installation of immersive sculptural and textile works by world-renowned Brazilian artist Maria Nepomuceno.

Activity Until 1 December 2022, from £3.50

Knittaz with Attitude: Yarnbombing at Upside Down Coffee

Knitting, crochet, yarnbombing and contemporary needlecraft. Not a workshop as such but a ‘learning’ social with Knittaz with Attitude.

Rachel Kneebone: 399 Days at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions Until 24 April 2022, FREE

Rachel Kneebone: 399 Days at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Encounter artist Rachel Kneebone’s most ambitious sculpture to date, presented in the unique setting of YSP’s 18th century chapel.

Lucian Freud: Real Lives at Tate Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 16 January 2022, from £5

Lucian Freud: Real Lives at Tate Liverpool

Tate Liverpool presents the first major display of portraits by Lucian Freud in the North West in over 30 years.

Literature Until 27 November 2021, FREE

Northern Publishers’ Fair at Central Library

Thirteen independent publishing houses set out their stalls at the Christmas Northern Publishers’ Fair at Manchester Central Library.

Food and Drink Until 17 December 2021, from £55

Explore Ancoats Food & Drink Tour

Take a culinary tour of Ancoats, the world’s first industrial suburb where an award-winning chip shop (which pays homage to hip-hop) sits alongside a Michelin starred fine dining restaurant.

Activity Until 31 July 2022, from £12

Heaton Hall & Park Tour: Glorious interiors and glorious landscape

Heaton Hall and the surrounding park are a reminder of Manchester’s complicated past, join this walking tour to see the beauty and hear the stories behind these cultural monoliths.

Earthbound: Contemporary Landscape from the Roberts Institute of Art at Millennium Gallery, Sheffield
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, FREE

Earthbound: Contemporary Landscape from the Roberts Institute of Art at Millennium Gallery, Sheffield

Featuring work by numerous contemporary artists, Earthbound explores how Sheffield has been shaped by the landscape it exists within.

Interruptions: Sounds – Online with Holden Gallery, Manchester
Exhibitions Until 5 August 2022, FREE

Interruptions: Sounds – Online with The Holden Gallery, Manchester

‘Interruptions: Sounds’ is an online collection of new audio works by seven artists, spanning spoken word, ambient sound and musical tracks.

Craft Beer Tour Around Manchester
Activity Until 18 December 2021, from £30

Craft Beer Tour Around Manchester

Join Craft Beer Tour Manchester for a journey through some of the cities best local breweries and artisanal beer serving bars. Discover the personality of Manchester’s beer through a diverse range of pints.

Literature Until 11 December 2021, FREE

Leeds Record & Book Fair at Kirkgate Market

Every second Saturday of the month, Leeds Record & Book Fair is indoors at Kirkgate Market, one of Europe’s largest indoor markets. Next dates are 14 August, 11 September, 9 October, 13 November and 11 December.

Activity Until 31 December 2021,

Manchester Taxi Tours

Manchester Taxi tours are the most personalised guided glimpse of the city you can find and now you can get to know Manchester better whilst enjoying a delicious afternoon tea.

Activity Until 27 November 2021, from £25

Urban Buddies, Mandarin Language Walking Tour

Join RobinGo for Urban Buddies, a 2 hour walking tour of Manchester, exploring the cities past and future in Mandarin.

Activity Until 30 October 2021, from £16

Canal, Coal and Cake

Canal, Coal and Cake is a walking tour that takes you through the industrial past, present and patisserie of Worsley.

Activity Until 31 December 2021, from £269

DJ Gym at Hatch

Learn some DJ and production skills with DJ Gym Manchester, based in the culturally infused surrounds of Hatch.

At Home with the Pankhurst Family at the Pankhurst Centre
Exhibitions Until 29 August 2024, FREE

At Home with the Pankhurst Family at the Pankhurst Centre

The Pankhurst Centre’s new permanent exhibition offers an intimate glimpse into the lives of the people behind the iconic Pankhurst name.

Nancy Collantine: Lazy Gazies/Tense Edges at The World Of Glass in St. Helens
Exhibitions Until 5 November 2021, FREE

Nancy Collantine: Lazy Gazies/Tense Edges at The World Of Glass in St. Helens

Nancy Collantine presents a new body of work produced between 2020-21 in the artist’s studio on the fifth floor looking out over Manchester.

A Creative Community at the Bluecoat in Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2021, FREE

A Creative Community at the Bluecoat in Liverpool

Discover the Bluecoat’s 100 year history of supporting artists in Liverpool and see inside the studios of the those currently working there.

The Edge Reopening Season
Comedy Until 18 December 2021, from £6

The Edge Reopening Season

Live theatre returns to The Edge this September and the opening season promises to be one to remember when its doors open for the first time in 18 months, and to a completely refurbished building.

Glee & Me at the Royal Exchange
Theatre Until 30 October 2021, from £10.00

Glee & Me at the Royal Exchange

This Bruntwood Judges Prize-winning dark comedy offers audiences a surprisingly optimistic portrayal of love even in the darkest times.

Little Play Squad Sessions at Legoland
Education Until 17 December 2021, from £15

Little Play Squad at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre

Regular weekday interactive parent-child sessions at Legoland Discovery Centre in Manchester designed for parents and their children aged 2-5.

She Appeared to Vanish at Waterside Arts in Sale and HOME Manchester
Exhibitions Until 7 November 2021, FREE

She Appeared to Vanish at Waterside Arts in Sale and HOME Manchester

HOME and Waterside Arts present an exhibition steeped in energy, tension, subversion and feminist resistance.

Lauren Gault: Cithra at The Tetley, Leeds
Exhibitions Until 3 January 2022,

Lauren Gault: Cithra at The Tetley, Leeds

Artist Lauren Gault’s sensory exhibition, Cithra, invites us to consider our relationship with the natural world in an entirely new way.

I Fall Back Asleep When I Dream of You at Waterside Arts in Sale
Exhibitions Until 6 November 2021, FREE

I Fall Back Asleep When I Dream of You at Waterside Arts in Sale

Holly Staniforth digitally combines disparate visual elements to build a florescent dreamscape – a space where the imagination takes over.

Annie Morris: When A Happy Thing Falls at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Exhibitions Until 6 February 2022, FREE

Annie Morris: When A Happy Thing Falls at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Step into When A Happy Thing Falls – a dense forest of luminous, towering sculptures by Annie Morris that reflect the fragility of life.

Sickert: A Life in Art at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 27 February 2022, from £5

Sickert: A Life in Art at Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool

Walker Art Gallery presents a major retrospective exhibition exploring the life of Walter Richard Sickert and his contribution to British art.

Rafaël Rozendaal: Permanent Distraction at Site Gallery in Sheffield
Exhibitions Until 23 December 2021, FREE

Rafaël Rozendaal: Permanent Distraction at Site Gallery in Sheffield

Site Gallery presents the most extensive installation of Rafaël Rozendaal’s websites series in a new immersive environment

Emily Speed: Flatland at Tate Liverpool
Exhibitions Until 2 January 2022, FREE

Emily Speed: Flatland at Tate Liverpool

Emily Speed’s new film uses set design, choreography and costume to depict flattened hierarchies and close-knit community structures.

Albert Potrony: EQUAL PLAY at BALTIC, Gateshead
Exhibitions Until 31 October 2022, FREE

Albert Potrony: EQUAL PLAY at BALTIC, Gateshead

Artist and educator Albert Potrony sets out to explore non-gendered and non-prescriptive modes of childhood play in a major new exhibition at BALTIC.

CYC: Everything All of the Time at Contact
Theatre Until 17 May 2022,

Contact Reopening Season

Following the extensive transformation of their iconic Oxford Road venue, Contact has announced a vibrant and progressive reopening programme. Read our preview of the upcoming season.