Bank holidays are a godsend – who knew just one extra day here and there could create such unrivalled joy? As this weekend’s is the last one of summer, it’s set to be a bit of a good’un. We’ve compiled a list of some of the best events on offer, each of which is completely free.

Spinfest: Beer & Blues Festival (pictured)
Spinningfields has been a bit of a summertime hotspot over the last few months, what with its Aperol Spritz stage, open air cinema and an Oast House record-breaking success, but soon the reign will be over. Wave goodbye to the season that Britain may not do best but sure gives a good bash at, with Spinfest’s Beer and Blues Festival. As a celebration of the best that the city has to offer, you’ll be given the opportunity to kick back with a pint and relax to the sound of live blues musicians.
Sun 25 Aug, The Avenue Courtyard, Spinningfields, M3 3AY, Live music from 12.30pm, FREE,

Bolton Food & Drink Festival
Mary Berry and the silverest fox Paul Hollywood will be there – but if you need even more persuading, other big names include Michael Caines, Aldo Zilli and James Martin. Of course it’s not just about the celebs, and thankfully there’s also a great line-up of food and drink with Kro, The Beer Keller and various other venues and restaurants taking part, as well as street entertainment and the Children’s Food Emporium.
Fri 23 – Mon 26 Aug, Le Mans Crescent,
 Bolton, BL1 1SA, FREE,

‘I am not a number’ at The Jackalope
Chorlton’s The Jackalope, which recently celebrated its first birthday, hosts a Festival No 6 preview event this Saturday. The free-entry night features DJs from the festival line-up, including Richard Hector-Jones and Lee Janda, plus live performances from Stazi, Badly Drawn Boy and an unplugged acoustic set from members of The Travelling band. The preview begins at 5pm with TV Eats BBQ out front.
Sat 24 Aug, The Jackalope, 370 Barlow Moor Road, Chorlton, M218AZ, 5pm – 2pm, FREE,

Bank Holiday at The Beagle
We already mentioned The Beagle’s BBQ this Saturday, curated by local folk label Red Deer Club, but they’ve now announced an additional Sunday helping to the weekend agenda with Eighty Six. DJs Duncan James Sime, James Holroyd, Rob Bright and Andrew Jif Jefferson will be providing the beats, The Beagle will be providing the beers – all you have to do is sit there and soak it up.
Sat 24 – Sun 25 Aug, The Beagle, 456 Wilmslow Road, Chorlton, M21 0BQ, 4pm – 12am, FREE

Urban Market at Greengate Square
Markets gracing city hotspots always go down well, blending the traditional trading ethos of the good old days with modern day urban life. Salford’s newest public space, Greengate Square (near Manchester Cathedral), will be hosting the first of its monthly markets this weekend, with over 30 artisan stalls, as well as live entertainment from a line-up of local musicians selected by Salford Music Festival director Ed Blaney.
Sat 24 – Sun 25 Aug, Greengate Square, Salford, Sat 10am – 5pm, Sun 12pm – 5pm, FREE,

Fri 23 Aug - Mon 26 Aug
Jess Hardiman
Published on:
Sat 22 Jun 2013