Grey skies and drizzle can only mean one thing… summer has officially hit the UK. Hopefully the worst of the weather can stave off as we enjoy the best of what our reopened city has to offer. Here’s our weekly guide to the best free things to do in Manchester this week, featuring The Modernist Gallery, new exhibitions from Manchester International Festival and much more.

Learn life lessons & cookery skills in If You Can Survive Nigeria, You Can Survive Anywhere | Mon 5 Jul | 7:30pm - 9pm

The School of Integration is part of the MIF 2019 Legacy, and was launched alongside Manchester Art Gallery. We’re starting to see the results of their hard work at this year’s biennial – and here’s a film and Q&A session with Lara Kazeem, all done while she teaches you how to make Nigeria’s favourite street food snack, the egg roll.

Visit a new MIF sculpture at I Love You Too | Manchester Central Library | Until Sat 10 Jul

Another piece of MIF19’s legacy involved South African artist Kemang Wa Lehulere working with a network of Manchester’s libraries. Now, he’s back – and after inviting 11 writers and 100 local people from across Manchester to send love letters to the city – he’s made a sculpture based on their experiences. Check it out in the wonderful Central Library Reading Room.

St Peter's Square, Manchester M2 5PD
Celebrate North Manchester in Brian Lomas' Small Shops | The Modernist Gallery | Ongoing

Local photographer Brian Lomas has been snapping Manchester for over 40 years, and yet this is one of his first ever exhibitions. His photographs of Moston, Harpurhey and Newton Heath unlock a time forgotten, particularly through his architectural subjects – see North Manchester’s quirky independent shops and businesses and experience a piece of our city’s elaborate history.

The Modernist, 58 Port Street, Manchester M1 2EQ
Celebrate footy's Hall of Famers | National Football Museum | Until Sat 27 Nov

It’s coming home… but before it does, check out the Hall of Fame our England heroes would love to be inducted into. The National Football Museum celebrates its reopening with a brand-new Hall of Fame featuring some of the game’s greatest figures. There’s a stellar selection of artefacts on show too, building a vivid picture of football’s top talents through time.

Urbis Building Cathedral Gardens, Todd Street, Manchester M4 3BG
Explore Captioning the City walking tour | Manchester International Festival | Until Sun 18 Jul

One final pick, which is perfect for getting out and about – just make sure you pick a decent day. We love MIF’s city-spanning projects, and there’s none more adventurous than Captioning the City by Christine Sun Kim. Her playful, political captions adorn lots of Manchester’s favourite buildings, and a walking tour is the perfect way to get to know the city.

Mon 5 Jul - Sun 11 Jul
Hugh Morris
Published on:
Mon 5 Jul 2021