What's On In October

Wednesday 10th October 2018
If you’re looking for things to do in the North and Scotland, October promises literature, laughs, last chances and lots more besides. So don’t be languid, listless or lackadaisical – get out there and get your tickets booked. It’s going to be an ‘L’ of a month.

Manchester Literature Festival (MLF) – 6-21 October
See Tony Walsh at the Manchester Literary Festival

You might have missed it but Manchester is enjoying its first year as a UNESCO City of Literature, and the MLF is very much the highlight.

There’s a LOT going on, so grab yourself a brochure, and watch out for these gems:

Suffragette City Walking Tour – 9 & 21 October, meet outside Central Library

It may have come to your attention this year that when it comes to women’s suffrage Manchester has been on the front line. This tour promises to be an inspiring and entertaining education.

An Evening with Tony Walsh (above) – 17 October, The Dancehouse

Tony Walsh, AKA Longfella, has won a special place in the hearts’ of Mancunians after his performance of This Is The Place following the 2017 bombing. Come along and have your soul massaged, your belly filled with laughs and feel your heart surge with pride.

Investigating Murder: An Evening with Ian Rankin and special guests – 15 October, Manchester HOME
Ian Rankin is touring the TransPennine network this October

Scotland’s most blood-curdling export, Ian Rankin, is roaming around most of the cities on the Network this October. Rankin is promoting his new book, House of Lies, alongside a panel of criminal experts who’ll explain what really happens during a murder investigation.
You’ll be able to catch up with the tour in Manchester, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Sheffield – find the dates here.

Taste Durham – Across October

If you love food then Durham is the place to be in October. Locally inspired dishes are flavour of the month in this city-wide festival of great grub. And as almost every other building in the high street is an eatery there’s bound to be something to sink your teeth into – whether that’s fine dining or a hearty pub lunch. Find out more at the Visit Durham website.

Halifax Comedy Festival – 20-28 October

Sara Pascoe, Lee Nelson, Richard Herring and (yes) The Sooty Show promise another brilliant week-and-a-bit of laughs, chortles and guffaws. The different gigs are taking part in buildings all over this wonderful town so it could broaden your horizons as well as raising your spirits.

Graphic Design Festival Scotland – 19-25 October. The Lighthouse, Glasgow

With workshops, exhibitions, interviews and design showcases this is going to be a visual feast. Even the location is an inspiration as it’s being held at The Lighthouse – Scotland’s wonderful Centre for Design and Architecture – which was the first public commission completed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

This year the event is part of Scotland’s Year of Young People 2018 so the focus is visual communications created by young people. Highlights include Top Form a series of talks by behemoths from the international creative industry and The International Poster Exhibition.

Last Chance – China’s First Emperor and the Terracotta Warriors – Ends 28 October

The Terracotta Warriors have been a huge hit for Liverpool this year and if you haven’t seen these 1,000-year-old stoneware warmongers yet, goodness knows when you’re going to get the chance again. Book your train ticket to Liverpool before it’s too late.

Scream at the Home of Halloween – 6-31 October, York Dungeon
Halloween at the York Dungeon

If your idea of a great Halloween is treating yourself to the sights, smells and shrieks of days gone by then the York Dungeon is for you. There are a host of different events from child-friendly to adults only and (naturally) all the reviews say you’ll likely have a horrible time.