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Get ready for Universally Manchester!

03 Jun 2024

200 years of The University of Manchester, four days of celebration – starting today (6 June).

Universally Manchester festival

Our Universally Manchester Festival – a once in a lifetime event celebrating 200 years of education, discovery and impact – kicks off on Thursday (6 June). 

For four days (6-9 June), the University will throw open its doors to welcome people of all ages to join a 200th birthday celebration like no other. 

From poetry to physics, music to medicine, computing to creative writing and more, we’ll mark the University’s global impact; the world firsts, the life-changing discoveries, the music, art, science and creativity, all sparked in Manchester.  

Helping us celebrate will be Professor Brian Cox, Professor David Olusoga, CBeebies presenter and Down’s Syndrome ambassador George Webster, Professor Sheena Cruickshank , Radiohead guitarist Ed O’Brien, exonerated postmaster Tom Hedges and many, many more. 

As you will be aware, there is some protest activity currently taking place on our campus. We've pulled together some useful information to ensure everyone can still enjoy their day with us. 

Curate your own festival programme 

You and your friends and family can curate your own innovative, imaginative and inspirational programme from more than 150 events on offer. Take a look at the festival website to choose your favourite events and make sure you’re making the very most of what’s on. 

Enjoy artisan food and drink 

Throughout the four days, there’ll be plenty of food and drink to enjoy too. Enjoy a delicious treat at the famous Pop Up Market Co on Bridgeford Street, a refreshing drink at the Community Arms on the Gilbert Square or make use of the picnic areas and cafes which will be open across our campus.  

Easy to explore 

Exploring the Oxford Road Campus is easy with the festival map (print versions available on the day) and our friendly festival crew, wearing rainbow-coloured lanyards, who will be on hand to help. 

Plan your festival at: 

There are still spaces available at some of our ticketed events with some walk-up seats available for sold out activities on a first-come, first serve basis. 


Talk 200: The Limits to Equality – access to justice and scandal (ticketed event) 

Friday, 7 June, 5.30pm – 7pm, Martin Harris Centre 

With recent scandals both in the UK and globally, our Chancellor and former Chief Crown Prosecutor for north-west England Nazir Afzal, exonerated postmaster Tom Hedges and barrister and advocate for the UK Covid-19 and Grenfell Inquiries Thalia Maragh discuss inequalities in access to justice and steps towards fairer treatment in a live Talk 200 lecture and podcast. 

Exposing the sewage scandal with Matt Staniek (Save Windemere) (ticketed event) 

Saturday, 8 June, 3.45pm – 4.30pm, On the Green, Gilbert Square 

Discuss the national sewage scandal – and how we can all do something about it – with Matt Staniek, Save Windermere campaigner, and Professor of Geography Jamie Woodward, who unearthed the horrifying scale of microplastic contamination in Greater Manchester’s rivers. 

Community Fair, a full day of family friendly activities (no tickets required) 

Saturday, 8 June, 10am – 4.30pm, University Place, Engineering Building A, Alliance Manchester Business School 

Programme your own robot, hunt for meteorites, explore how our hearts work and more at the Community Fair – jam-packed with interactive science, arts, engineering and history activities for all ages. 

Manchester Histories Festival: Celebration Day (no tickets required) 

Sunday, 9 June, 11am – 7pm, Manchester Central Library 

History and heritage stories, stalls, live music, walk-about performances, creative activities, films, speakers, exhibitions, family fun...and hop onboard the heritage bus! 

Please note the venue change from the Whitworth Hall to Manchester Central Library. 

The Whitworth presents… The Carnival (no tickets required) 

Sunday, 9 June, 10am – 5pm, The Whitworth 

Join a party like no other – a day of vivid colour, uplifting rhythms and infectious energy to celebrate art, culture and Manchester’s dynamic community with live performances, interactive workshops, immersive art experiences and delicious street food.