From pop-up magical bars to the zombie apocalypse, Manchester has your Halloween needs covered
It's the most wonderful time of the year. Halloween is fast approaching, and Manchester is getting geared up with a month of eerie events and deadly days out to scare even the bravest of citizens. There's something for all tastes, from those looking to play at witches and wizards and get smashed, to full-on carnivals celebrating the Festival of the Dead. Just read on to find out what you can get up to in Manchester this All Hallow's Eve. Fleck Bennett The main name in Manchester ghost walks, Fleck Bennett Productions caters to, in their own words, 'Mancunians, tourists and weirdos'. Choose from 'The Original Manchester Ghost Walk', which promises a ghost around every corner; 'Tavern of the Dead', an intimate 15-person performance around a coffin lid and featuring a séance and Ouija board; or 'The Saturday Night Ghost Walk' where you'll learn more about the first cases of cholera, the paupers' graveyard and John Byrom and the Hellfire Club.
Festival of the Dead The touring Festival of the Dead stops off all over the UK. Revellers can expect carnival pageantry, a procession, dancers, acrobats, and an array of stunning art and costumes. Keen for customers to know this is not part of Dia de los Muertos and not appropriating that festival's religious and cultural events, Festival of the Dead instead offers up live music and DJs, face painting, lights shows and party vibes until the early hours.
The Wizard and the Wand They're very careful to never actually mention Harry Potter by name, but let's be real, the students and teachers of Hogwarts are who you'll be drawing inspiration from at the Wizard and Wand event. A pop-up bar offering buttery fizz (ahem butterbeer), smoking cocktails and mysterious potions – they also advise you don your best wizarding robes and sample the dark arts demonstrations and magical photo ops.
FLICK: Night of the Living Dead As a tribute to George A Romero, Manchester's FLICK present an immersive zombie apocalypse experience. The Soup Kitchen is the only safe place – make your way there and help out the other survivors as you battle the undead to keep from getting infected. How will it all end? Fans of the genre will know it's probably not good news. After it's all calmed down a bit, there's the chance to drink to the dead, enjoy apocalyptic eats and watch a screening of Night of the Living Dead.
Jonathan Schofield Manchester Tours Schofield runs a series of walking tours, including pub crawls and tours of some of the city's most jaw-dropping buildings, but we're only interested in spooky stuff just now. The company delivers on this front, with the horror walk taking in Spanish opera singer Madame Malibran who met a tragic end in Manchester, the grisly tale of 'Manchester Ophelia' Lavinia Robinson, the sad tale of Dr John Dee, plus a headless dog thrown in for maximum scares.