Just before Halloween takes over our social life, and the darker, shorter days truly set in – it’s the perfect time to cram in as many free activities the city has to offer.

From some wholesome Tuesday afternoon urban gardening to a wild 90s nostalgia throwback club night – we’ve found something for just about everyone. Check out this week’s guide for the best free things to do in Manchester.

Here’s the rundown…

Steve McQueen's Mangrove Film Screening | University Place | Tues 19 Oct | 4pm-7pm

As part of Black History Month, the University of Manchester’s History Department is showing Steve McQueen’s critically acclaimed film, Mangrove, followed by a panel and audience discussion. Sponsored by the Race, Roots & Resistance Collective, this is a brilliant opportunity to explore, learn and discuss a range of concepts all while actively participating in Black History Month and supporting the lines in which the arts and history intersect.

Room 1.218, University Place, 176 Oxford Road, Manchester M13 9PL
Better in the 90s | The Bread Shed | Sat 23 Oct | 11pm-3am

The year is 1994. The location: Manchester. After hearing about the burgeoning rave scene revolving around house, jungle, and hardcore music, you and a group of friends decide to investigate the hype first-hand. After a short bus ride, you join a queue outside of a former industrial space. The wait is not long, but it takes just enough time to build some excitement as you feel the low rumble of the bass emanating from inside. Finally, you cross the threshold into a different world. As you open the doors of the venue you’re instantly greeted by a garage classic, transporting you straight back to the 90s.

Be sure to finish your pre-drinks quickly as free entry only lasts up until 11:30pm!

126 Grosvenor Street, Manchester M1 7HL
Alan Turing Guided Tour | Manchester Museum Reception | Sat 23 Oct | 10:30am-12:15pm

Join this brilliant free guided tour to learn a little more about one of the great figures who helped shape the Manchester we know and love today. Alan Turing is undoubtedly one of the most influential 20th century Britons, but his life was beset by frustration and tragedy. From the Enigma Machine, to his personal relationships, to his death – this tour will show you the city in a brand new light whilst simultaneously educating and enlightening you on such a prominent Mancunian figure whose legacy is still felt today.

Oxford Road, Chorlton-on-Medlock, Manchester M13 9PL
City centre Planting | Great Northern Warehouse | Tues 19 Oct | 10am-12pm

For all you green-fingered folk out there, The Great Northern Warehouse has begun to develop a city centre garden. Join in for some autumn flower bulb planting along with discussions on plant life cycles, seasonality,  gardening advice and how you can get involved in their city centre project.

Suitable for families and delivered by the warehouse’s Community Growing Coordinator, who has long-standing experience of working with children and communities, it’s the ideal morning out for you and your little garden sidekick.

235 Deansgate, Manchester M3 4EN
Antics Clubnight x French Electro Spezial | YES | Sat 23 Oct | 11pm-3:30am

Swing by YES, Manchester nightlife stalwart, for an evening of Alternative, Electro House and Electronic Indie anthems. With DJ Antics & Acid Child spinning the decks, expect Daft Punk, MGMT, Jamie xx, La Femme, Tame Impala, LCD Soundsystem, Peggy Gou and many more alt music icons. What better way to end the working week than to groove out to some killer tunes with a cheap pint in the famed pink room at YES?

38 Charles Street, Manchester M1 7DB
Mon 18 Oct - Sun 24 Oct
Rhiannon Ingle
Published on:
Mon 18 Oct 2021