The Quays will play host to a number of astounding world-class events this autumn, including performances from the BBC Philharmonic, Birmingham Royal Ballet and the critically acclaimed theatre production ‘Not I, Footfalls and Rockaby. There will also be renowned exhibitions and a showcase of the foremost contemporary visual art from across the globe. Adding to this incredible line up is a host of family activities and the monthly artisan food and craft markets.
The Quays is Greater Manchester’s stunning waterfront destination and home to some of the most spectacular attractions and iconic buildings in the UK. It’s one of the Northwest’s best cultural, sporting and leisure destinations, where you’ll discover a whole host of exciting places and activities to see and do. Housed within one square mile, all of its attractions are within easy walking distance, making it the ideal location for a day out or weekend break. The Quays is a one-stop destination for entertainment, dining out, arts, culture and shopping!
Experience the award-winning IWM North, part of Imperial War Museums, with its range of compelling exhibitions, tours and family activities. To commemorate the centenary of the First World War, a landmark anniversary for Britain and the world, IWM North has launched the largest exhibition ever created about the North West of England during the First World War, called ‘From Street to Trench: A World War that Shaped a Region.’ Open now, the exhibition features more than 200 objects, films, sound recordings, photographs, artworks and letters, including donated personal items, many of which have never been on public display before.
To add to this the BBC Philharmonic joins forces with IWM North for a moving piece of music and drama, telling the story of Salford lad Arthur Burke, a soldier in the First World War. There will be four performances from October 17 to October 18 in IWM North’s unique Main Exhibition Space. In addition to this special showcase, IWM North will play host to the Asia Triennial Manchester 2014 (ATM14), the only Asian Art Triennial outside the Asia Pacific region, which returns to Manchester for a third time on September 27 to November 23; a festival of visual culture that will feature a series of powerful exhibitions, commissions, and creative interventions by artists who live in, work in or address issues surrounding Asia.
A spectacular waterside venue housing theatres, galleries, a restaurant, cafe and bar, The Lowry offers visitors the chance to enjoy the very best in visual art and performance and this autumn is no exception! A major highlight this year will be Not I, Footfalls and Rockaby, where Lisa Dwan performs a one-woman Samuel Beckett trilogy after a critically acclaimed sell-out run at the Royal Court. What’s more families can enjoy the Birmingham Royal Ballet’s Beauty and the Beast; a gothic fairytale with magical transformations, wild waltzes and a relationship between Belle and the Beast. On Saturday 27 September, there is fun for all the family, with a unique opportunity to meet the cast, see the costumes, take part in creative activities and even have your face painted!
Taking place the second weekend of every month, the Lowry Outlet’s family-friendly, Waterside Food & Craft Market will transform The Quays into a bustling market place. Spanning the Lowry Outlet’s Plaza, the open-air market will host over 30 stalls offering the finest seasonal produce from around the county and further afield including delicious artisan breads, homemade cupcakes, local cheeses, award-winning sausages, organic drinks and traditionally created real ales. An abundance of crafts will also be on offer, including handmade gifts, homewares, jewellery and seasonal goods.
Creating extraordinary experiences at The Quays, Quays Culture is an arts programme that brings in high quality local, national and international culture to the public spaces of The Quays. This autumn, they will host a Quays Open Day, part of the Family Arts Festival, on November 1, giving the public the opportunity to get behind the scenes of this new international Centre of media, heritage and creativity. There will also be a mobile cinema showing innovative animations and arts films, and Quarantine Theatre’s popular interactive artwork, Soldiers Song.
Set sail in the autumn sun, as visitors can take a boat ride along Manchester’s historic ship canal and explore the city’s stunning scenery with Manchester Cruises – an exciting sightseeing venture for all the family. If you fancy traveling further afield, Mersey Ferries offer a fascinating six-hour trip where you will travel the 35-miles of the canal to Liverpool enjoying spectacular scenery and lively commentary along the way. At the end of the cruise you are returned to your point of departure by a dedicated coach transfer.
Feeling energetic? Why not take part in the 2014 City of Salford 10k on September 7. This is one of the most popular 10k runs in the North of England, with nearly 3,500 entrants in 2013. Starting and finishing on the Plaza, it’s the perfect opportunity to take in the sights and stretch your legs!
With too much to see in just one day, take the opportunity to rest your head at one of the top-quality yet affordable hotels in the area, including the Old Trafford Lodge, which is adjoined to Emirates Old Trafford the home of Lancashire County Cricket Club. The hotel has private balconies overlooking the spectacular cricket pitch and, what’s more, in the last few years the ground has welcomed tremendous changes at The Point and the Pavilion – making it an ideal location to hold events, weddings and celebrations.
Another hotel, within walking distance of all the main Quays’ attractions, is the Copthorne Hotel Manchester, which offers its very own Children’s Concierge, ‘Ask Alfred’, service. This unique offering can be added upon booking and features a children’s welcome pack, which includes a teddy bear, bathrobe, toiletries, ice cream on arrival, sweets and a parent’s survival guide! And, to save on rooms, take advantage of the hotel’s Advance Purchase offer where you get a discount when you book in advance.