First organised in London in 1987 by Ghanian activist Akyaaba Addai-Sebo, the celebration of Black History Month has spread throughout the UK and become an important part of the discussion around diversity and inclusion. Black History Month allows us to celebrate the continued achievements and contributions of Black people in the UK and around the world, it’s also a time for continued action to tackle racism, reclaim Black history, and ensure Black history is represented and celebrated all year round.   

This year’s theme, ‘Celebrating our Sisters, Saluting our Sisters, and Honouring Matriarchs of Movements’, was created to raise awareness the challenges black women face while amplifying their voices and honouring their contributions to history.  

Of course, Greater Manchester is marking this month in a variety of ways to suit all ages and tastes. Below you will find a variety of events across Greater Manchester that celebrate Black History Month, raising awareness of its importance by reflecting on the past and celebrating black culture today. 

Manchester Cathedral 

Starting off Black History Month on Saturday 28 September, Manchester Cathedral will be hosting the Caribbean & African Health Network for the Greater Manchester Black History Month Civic Launch. The event will feature a prominent line-up of speakers, including Dame Elizabeth Nneka Anionwu and Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham, as well as performances and food and drink vendors. Find out more about the event at CAHN

The Lowry 

Between Tuesday 31 October and Thursday 2 November, The Lowry is welcoming Ballet Black with a completely new, original work in Ballet Black: Pioneers. This show features two acts. The first piece The or Now by choreographer Will Tuckett asks the question: in times like these, where do we each belong? The second act, NINA: By Whatever Means, was choreographed by Mthuthuzeli November and pays homage to the singer with an empowering journey through her life and activism. Book your tickets here

The Bridgewater Hall 

The Bridgewater Hall will welcome singer and songwriter Leigh-Anne on Monday 23 October to celebrate the release of her memoir, Believe. For one evening, listen to Leigh-Anne telling her story, from growing up in a mixed-race family to taking the stage as part of the superstar pop group Little Mix and how she dealt with the prejudices of the industry while coming to her own power. Make sure you don’t miss out on tickets by booking here

Feel Good Club 

Head to Feel Good Club on Thursday, 5 October to listen and share come incredible true, lived stories. Heard Live for Black History Month will give a platform to often unheard voices, with a captivating line-up of storytellers ready to share their own experiences. The money raised from the event will go towards CAHN and Kids of Colour. You can book your tickets now here.  

Manchester Central Library 

Two exciting events are coming to Central Library as part of the Ubuntu Festival and in collaboration with The Zebra Partnership and the Creative Society Manchester.  

Inspired by the popular streaming series, Brushstrokes of Bridgerton will be a paint and sip event on Monday 2 October to celebrate TV producer and screenwriter Shonda Rhimes while opening up the discussion around colour blind casting and hearing from some honored guests. Get your paintbrushes ready and book your tickets here

However, if comic books are more your thing, head down to the library on Saturday 21 October for the Zebra Tribe Comic Festival. Here you will find some incredible black graphic novel and comic creators, illustrators, writers and allies. Magic of Myths writer Corey Brotherson will be sharing his journey so far, alongside Yomi Ayeni and his iconic steam punk graphic novels. The event is free, but don’t miss out by booking your entry here

Manchester Literature Festival 

Taking over the city centre, the Manchester Literature Festival is back this year and has a spectacular line-up of events that coincinde with Black History Month. On Friday 13 October, poets Terrance Hayes, Anthony Anaxagorou and Selina Nwulu will be at Central Library to perform their latest works, all exploring their own experiences navigating life and society. Contact Theatre will be hosting poet and activist Linton Kwesi Johnson on Saturday 14 October to read a medley of his Selected Poems and discuss the artists who have inspired him as well as his own contribution to Black British culture. Afua Hirsch will be at Central Library on Wednesday 18 October to present her latest book Decolonising my Body, which looks into the societal beauty standards, how these came to be and how they can be stripped away to help people feel empowered in their own bodies and minds. You can find out more about what’s on at the festival here

Manchester Folk Festival 

Back for its 7th year is Manchester Folk Festival. This incredible music festival will take place across the city centre, and there are plenty of artists that you won’t want to miss. Multi-instrumentalist Suntou Susso will be performing at Hallé St Peter’s on Thursday 19 October, playing the traditional Kora – a harp-lute with 22 strings. On Friday 20 October, at SOUP in Spear St, singer-songwriter Lady Nade will be performing songs from her third album, Willing, sharing messages of love, loss, hope and community. Check out the full line-up of the Manchester Folk Festival here

Oldham Library 

Drawing inspiration from the Windrush generation, the Black British Ballet will be performing in Oldham Library on Tuesday 24 October. Island Movements tells the story of a young Caribbean soldier in WW2 Britain and is choreographed by Darren Panton, the first black British dancer to graduate from the prestigious Royal Ballet School, and Patrick Williams, who has danced at Alvin Ailey and the Paris Opera. Admission to the show is free, but you can reserve your spot here

The Space (Stockport) 

On Saturday 14 October, join The Zebra Partnership at The Space in Stockport for a panel discussion about Black Women’s health. This #MissDiagnosis is a Lunch and Learn event put together specially for Black History Month and will raise the issue of incorrect diagnosis in Black Women, from maternal care to breast cancer.  After the event, take the opportunity to network and enjoy delicious African Caribbean food. Book your tickets for the panel now here

Frog And Bucket Comedy Club 

Frog and Bucket Comedy Club will be hosting Comedy Shutdown’s Black History Month Tour on Sunday, 8 October. Celebrating some incredible talent, it will feature Michelle de Swarte, Metrik, Kat B and Loyiso Gola for a hilarious, uplifting evening that will have you trying not to fall from your seat with laughter. Find your tickets here

To discover more events happening across Greater Manchester throughout October, visit our What’s On listings page. 


Manchester Cathedral
Cathedral / Minister
Manchester Cathedral

A stunning interior with the best late medieval woodwork in the North.

Ballet Black
The Lowry Events
Dancers; José Alves, Isabela Coracy, Alexander Fadayiro, Taraja Hudson, Sayaka Ichikawa, Rosanna Lindsey, Helga Paris-Morales, Ebony Thomas

The pioneering dance company performs a new work by acclaimed choreography Will Tuckett and Mthuthuzeli November.

Bridgewater Hall
Music Hall
The Bridgewater Hall exterior

Enjoy concerts ranging from classical and jazz through to world and popular music.

An evening with Feel Good Club
Feel Good Club founders

Join in this summer for an evening of networking, drinks, nibbles and a self-love workshop hosted by Manchester-based wellbeing café Feel Good Club.

Manchester Literature Festival 2023
Manchester Literature Festival poster with Linton Kwesi Johnson

Manchester Literature Festival is pleased to announce four remarkable writers headlining this year’s festival in autumn at events hosted by two cutting edge Manchester venues, Contact and HOME. The Festival will run 6-22 October 2023.

Manchester Folk Festival
Musicians on stage

Manchester Folk Festival returns on 19-21 October! For this edition, it is moving to the Northern Quarter to some of the most well established and iconic music venues in the city, with venues including Band on the Wall, New Century Hall, Hallé St Peters, Night and Day, Hallé at St Michaels and Soup Kitchen.



Comments are disabled for this post.