For those looking to get to know Manchester better, why not start with sampling the events at June’s ambitious and wide-ranging Manchester Histories Festival? The biennial programme takes in online games, talks about moths, walking tours, bike tours and much more. In fact there are over 180 events to get involved with, many of which are completely free. We’ve picked five that we particularly like the look of, but the whole programme is worth exploring. Other highlights include Manchester Celebration Day at Manchester Town Hall and Central Library (Sat 11 Jun, all day) including free heritage bus rides from the Town Hall, up to the Transport Museum and back again (11am-4pm). and a group show called Progress (pictured), themed on the past of Rogue Artists Studios as a working mill. The exhibition includes performance, film screenings and more (Sats & Suns throughout the Festival, noon-5pm).

Free recital: Making Music in Manchester during WW1 at RNCM
Previously unseen items from the RNCM archives will be on display alongside talks by a number of experts as well as the recreation of a concert performed during WW1 by current RNCM students of Debussy’s Sonata for Cello and Piano (1915).
Sun 5 Jun, RNCM, 124 Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9RD. Tel: 11am-4pm, FREE.

Film screening: Destination Ireland at Irish World Heritage Centre
Rare screening of documentary and private film footage which reveals the many lives and journeys of Irish people between Ireland and Manchester between 1930s and the 1980s using materials from the Northwest Film Archive at MMU.
Sun 5 Jun, Irish World Heritage Centre, 1 Irish Town Way, Cheetham Hill, Manchester, M8 0RY. 6.30pm, £3 / £1.50, over 12s only,

Bike ride: WoManchester Cycle Tour
Take a six-mile guided cycle tour visiting sites associated with the six women shortlisted for a new statue as part of the WoManchester Project (Elizabeth Raffald, Elizabeth Gaskell, Margaret Ashton, Emmeline Pankhurst, Ellen Wilkinson, and Louise Da-Cocodia). Learn about their lives and achievements, and pick your winner (or just celebrate them all).
Sun 12 Jun, starting at Manchester Town Hall, Albert Square, Manchester, M60 2LA, 11am-2pm, £15 (£8 concs)

Modernist visions: Making Manchester exhibition at Manchester Technology Centre
Elevated pedestrian walkways, monorails, responsive facades and moving pavements were all part of the fantastical visions that post war planners and architects thought would compose modern Manchester. A number of groups including Manchester School of Architecture and the Manchester Modernist Society are behind this new exhibition which brings these never-to-be-built visions to life through digitally recreated gaming environments, archive material and plans from 1960-75.
Manchester Technology Centre, Oxford House, Oxford Road, Manchester M1 7ED. Mon – Fri, 9am-5.30pm, FREE,

Natural History: Manchester and the Peppered Moth at Manchester Museum
Perhaps the most famous example of natural selection, the Dark Peppered Moth spread rapidly during the 19th century in Britain’s industrial, sooty environment. Listen to a talk on the subject by experts including Prof. Laurence Cook has been studying the genetic evolution of the Peppered Moth since the 1960s and Manchester museum’s Zoology curator, Henry McGhie. You’re in safe hands here.
Sat 11 Jun, Manchester Museum, University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL. 3pm-4pm, FREE,

Fri 3 – Sun 12 Jun, Manchester Histories Festival, various venues, mostly FREE,

Fri 3 Jun - Sun 12 Jun
Ruth Allan
Published on:
Thu 9 Jun 2016