Things to do in Manchester this week: 19th May – 25th May 2017

Big week in Manchester this week as those Take That boys come to town and middle aged women everywhere get absolutely leathered on Prosecco and make a nuisance of themselves around the city centre.

By Ben Brown | Last updated 25 May 2017

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Big week in Manchester this week as those Take That boys come to town and middle aged women everywhere get absolutely leathered on Prosecco and make a nuisance of themselves around the city centre. It’s alright though – there’s still plenty of stuff going on around town to distract you away from Gary Barlow and his terrible face. Check these out…

Bourbon Barber Shop: Beards, Bourbon & BBQ
Friday 19th May, 4pm ’til late

This one should be perfect for anyone who lives in Chorlton and has a beard – Oddest are holding a Bourbon Barber Shop BBQ on Friday and it looks like it will be pretty banging. Starting at 4pm they have Close Male Grooming coming in who will be offering haircuts, beard trims and cut throat shaves so you can stop looking like Stig of the Dump and look more like…errr.. Stig off Top Gear. There’s also a BBQ from 4pm ‘til 10pm where they’ll be burning the buggery out of plenty of meat and veggie options while listening to some live music and DJ tunes. It’s sponsored by Bulleit whiskey and if they don’t offer any free samples – I’d be angry.

Oddest Bar, 414-416 Wilbraham Rd, Manchester M21 0SD
0161 860 7515


Levenshulme Friday Night Market: Veg Fest!
Friday 19th May, 5pm – 9pm

Some might complain that the only reason this is here in this list is because I’ve recently just moved to Levenshulme and want to promote the area a bit. Well, that’s exactly why it’s in here. But it’s also in here because it’s a really good market and on Friday they’ll be running a special Vegetarian Night Market Special to celebrate National Vegetarian Week. You can expect plenty of fit street food, live music, booze, books, art and other stuff – all packaged up in one convenient market.

Levenshulme Market, Stockport Rd, Manchester M19 3PJ
07853 266598


Odd Clothes Swap
Sunday 21st May, 12pm – 3pm

This Sunday Odd are hosting a Clothes Swap – and it looks like the perfect thing for my girlfriend – the chance for her to give her wardrobe a clear out and replace her current terrible gear with much less terrible gear. Here’s how it works: Collect all of the clothes, footwear and accessories that you don’t want anymore and put them in some sort of large sack. I suggest one of them big blue Ikea ones. Head on over to Odd between 11.30 – 12.30 and 13.00 – 14.00 and you can swap the clothes for some form of token. Starting at 1pm you can then syphon through a load of other gear and swap them for stuff you actually want – hopefully giving your wardrobe a new lease of life.

£5 to swap 10 items
Odd, 30-32 Thomas St, Manchester M4 1ER
0161 833 0070


Flamenco Concert and Workshops in Didsbury
Sunday 21st May, 7.30pm

Flamenco dancing always reminds me of family holidays when I was a kid, when we would go to Malaga or Tenerife and they would have some impossibly attractive woman stamping and clapping and shaking on stage while young 7 year old me pissed about on my Game Boy and my mum and dad sat in silence after an argument over some missing Pesetas. You will have the chance to watch some real proper Flamenco this Sunday at the Didsbury Baptist Church instead of the half-drunk ones you will find in a beach bar in Benidorm. Singer Alicia Carrasco and guitarist Jose Manuel Leon present Mujeres Klorica Flamenco which looks to draw on the history of Flamenco as a political art form, their songs explore themes of social justice, tolerance and the role of women in Flamenco. Musically they mix traditional flamenco forms with elements of jazz and experimental music. The day workshops have sold out but there are still tickets for the evening concert – and they’re only 10 sheets.

Buy tickets here 
Didsbury Baptist Church, School Lane M20 6SX


Professor Brian Cox at Manchester Arena
Sunday 21st May, 8pm

Everyone’s favourite scientist after Doc Brown and Professor Weetos, Brian Cox is headed to the Manchester Arena this week which is a sure sign that British society is nowhere near as bad as it seems. If someone would have said to you 10 years ago that a scientist could fill the Nynex Arena, they’d probably laugh you out of town – but here it is – Coxy, Cox-meister, the big Cox – centre stage in one of the biggest arenas in the country. Hailing from my neck of the woods Oldham, it’s likely he will forego the science and instead discuss the pedestrianisation of Yorkshire Street or the proliferation of DIY stores in the Tommyfield Market and its impact on other local businesses. Good on you Brian lad – should be a good lecture. Tickets are about £45.

Manchester Arena, Victoria Station, Hunts Bank, Manchester M3 1AR
0161 950 5000


Lead Balloon @ Pen & Pencil
Wednesday 24th May, 7.30pm

Starting this week is a new comedy night at The Pen and Pencil – hilariously named ‘The Lead Balloon’. This Wednesday will see Meryl O’Rourke headlining, and even if you’ve never heard of her – you’ve probably seen her on a panel show repeat on Dave late at night, or more likely when she supported Frankie Boyle on one of his tours. There’s plenty of other comedians too including Pete Phillipson, satirist Chris Kehoe and Ben Sutton. Tying it all together will be host Red Richmond. If you want to know who all these names are – get YouTube out. Or just go to the night and find out for yourself. It’s only a fiver.

To book, please email
Pen & Pencil, Fourways House, 57 Hilton St, Manchester M1 2EJ
0161 660 3303