What's On

The best things to do in Manchester this week: 12th – 18th October

Your go-to guide for what's on, what's happening and what there is to do in the city this week.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 9th October 2020

October is well under way now and there’s plenty to be getting up to in Manchester.

If you’re stuck for something to do, then this is your go-to guide for what’s on and what’s happening in the city of Manchester and beyond this week.

Some of the events we’re going to mention here are completely free, others will set you back a few pounds and most will need to be booked in advance, but all are COVID-secure and socially-distanced in order to keep you as safe as possible during these trying times.

Whatever you fancy doing though, there’s certainly no shortage of choice in our region.

Missed last week’s round-up? Catch it here.


Here’s some of the things you could be getting up to this week:



Pumpkin Lanterns

Manchester City Centre

1st October – 1st November

CityCo Pumpkins In Trees In St Annes Square

It's beginning to look a lot like… Halloween in the city! ??

Posted by The Manc on Tuesday, 29 September 2020

The pumpkins are still here, in case you missed them.


If you’re looking to get in the mood for Halloween early, but keep things a little on the cheaper side this week, then you need look no further than up above in the city centre as the annual decorative pumpkin lanterns are back once again and they’re here all month.

Going on a little tour to see the lanterns in the trees in St Ann’s Square, Market Street and beyond is the perfect activity for all the family, easy to plan and great for pictures.

And it’s FREE too.

You can find more information here.



Park N Party presents Scare City

Event City, Trafford

Monday 12th – Sunday 18th October

ScareCity 2020 At Park N Party In Manchester

ScareCity at Park N Party in Trafford is a living nightmare… ?? Tickets and event times ? http://bit.ly/ScareCity

Posted by The Manc on Thursday, 8 October 2020

Scare City officially kicked off last week and it’s not for the faint hearted.

This immersive drive-in cinema event – organised by Park N Party – sees terrifying performers swarming on unsuspecting viewers’ during each evening of car park entertainment at Event City in Trafford.

Horror flicks for all film fans will be showing throughout the month of October.


From the comfort of your own car this week, you can watch films including Insidious, Get Out, and The Blaire Witch Project for the brave, and also Frankenweenie, Goosebumps, and Beetlejuice if you’d rather keep your wits about you.

Tickets are priced at £35 per vehicle.

Food and drink is also available to purchase on site, and will be served and distributed in compliance with COVID-19 safety precautions.

You can reserve your spot at Scare City online now via Eventbrite.



Brick or Treat

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre, Trafford

Monday 12th – Sunday 18th October

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre

Trick or treating may be off the cards this year, but how about Brick or Treat instead?

This October, you can take your little monsters to LEGOLAND Discovery Centre at Barton Square and get into the spirit at the ultimate Halloween party, with so many “fang-tastic activities” and “spook-tacular activities”, plus access to two rides, LEGO build & play zones, and a 4D cinema at the ultimate indoor LEGO playground.

All of this COVID-safe fun is included within the price of an admission ticket too.


You can book your tickets here.


Ascarium 2020

SEA LIFE Manchester, Trafford

Monday 12th – Sunday 18th October

Ascarium / SEA LIFE Mancheter

The fun doesn’t stop at intu Trafford Centre, as Ascarium is arriving at SEA LIFE Manchester once again this year and it’s an experience like no other.


You are invited to follow the immersive trail through the site – which will adhere to all necessary COVID-19 safety measures – to find missing potion ingredients hidden throughout displays of the creepiest creatures of the deep and once you’ve spotted all of the missing items, see if you can solve the riddle at the end of the trail to complete the spell and claim your free Cadbury reward for your Halloween bravery.

You can find out more and book your tickets here.


Totally Gruesome


Monday 12th – Sunday 18th October

Totally Gruesome

Totally Gruesome is a 100% socially distanced and COVID-safe Halloween attraction aimed at Primary School-aged children in Ashton-under-Lyne..

In your pre-booked time slot, you’ll get five minutes to spend in each of the 10 themed rooms – which range from ‘Spiders Cave’ and ‘Clown Graveyard’, to ‘Egyptian Tomb’ and ‘Witches Forest’ – to crack the code. Follow the clues to uncover a letter of the alphabet in each themed room and once you have all the letters, you can then solve the anagram to be entered into the weekly sweetie prize draw.

It’s basically a kids version of break-out rooms, crossed with the crystal maze.

Tickets are priced at £7 each.

You can discover more information about the event and book your tickets here.



Murder Mystery 2020

East Lancashire Railway, Bury

Saturday 17th October

Dining With Distinction

Fancy a bit of Poirot to get you in the mood for Halloween?

This week’s Murder Mystery 2020 theme at East Lancashire Railway in Bury is ‘Trouble at Tower Terrors’.


The description for the event reads: “They’re creepy and they’re kooky, mysterious and spooky and one of them is also a killer. The residents of Terror Towers are out for revenge on the oldest and deadliest member of the clan and it’s up to you to dig up the evidence and discover who is the worst monster of all before the witching hour strikes.”

Tickets are priced at £75.

This includes a beautiful 2 1/3 hour steam train ride through the Irwell Valley, a welcome glass of fizz, a four course meal – with everything from Chorizo, Halloumi & Cucumber salad, to Raspberry & White Chocolate Meringue on the menu – followed by tea or coffee and after dinner chocolates, and of course award-winning Murder Mystery entertainment.

You can book your tickets here.



GM ‘Virtual’ Walking Festival

Greater Manchester

Monday 12th – Sunday 18th October


After something that isn’t so spooky and Halloween-themed this week?

The GM ‘Let’s Walk Festival’ is taking place in a completely COVID-safe and virtually this year, so no matter whether you’re a “stroller, roamer, shuffler, moocher or a marcher”, you’re welcome to join in with this two-week-long festival.

It’s a great opportunity to set yourself (or your family) a walking goal and discover the simple joys and benefits of walking with an option to raise money for local causes too.


You can find out more information and register onto the event here.


Escape to Freight Island

Depot Mayfield

Thursday 15th, Friday 16th, Saturday 17th & Sunday 18th October

Escape to Freight Island

There’s plenty going on at Escape to Freight Island this week.


If you haven’t had chance to make your way down to Manchester’s newest social experience and one of the hottest tickets in town yet – which is housed at Depot Mayfield in the heart of the city centre – then this is definitely a good week to make that happen.

On the agenda this extended weekend is regular act Reform Radio Presents on Thursday, a special showing by Band on the Wall Presents on Friday – with exciting acts yet to be announced – Mr. Scruff, MC Kwasi, Annabel Fraser, and Lee Andrews taking over for 10 hours on Saturday, and finally From Manchester With Love taking to the stage on Sunday.

Tickets to all events must be booked in advance.

You can books yours and find more information about social distancing / COVID-safe precautions here.


Higher Ground

Ducie Street Warehouse, Northern Quarter

Friday 16th & Saturday 17th October

Higher Ground x Ducie Street Warehouse

Higher Ground is taking over Ducie Street Warehouse for the full month of October.

The innovative pop-up restaurant – which prides itself on offering dishes with the best North West ingredients, Manchester brewed beer and natural wine – began its residency at the popular Northern Quarter hangout at at the start of the month, where an incredible five-course sharing menu will be served and an optional wine pairing, consisting of three glasses is available to add-on.

Tickets at £45 per head and prepaid reservations must be made for party sizes of two – six people.

You can book yours here.