Want to know what's on in Manchester? Confidentials has got you covered. Here are 10 things next month that are actually worth going to

Bolton International Film Festival

Film fanatics, this one's for you. This year's Bolton International Film Festival will be showing 300 BAFTA and BIFA-qualifying short films across five days in multiple venues across the town. Expect industry talks and the opportunity to network with producers and directors. Recognisable faces that have attended previous BIFFs include Maxine Peake, Diane Morgan and Joe Lycett. 

Where: Multiple venues across Bolton
When: 4-8 October
Price: From £8.50
Tickets & more info: boltonfilmfestival.com

2023 08 04 Bolton Film Fest Joe Lycett
Joe Lycett at Bolton International Film Festival Image: Bolton International Film Festival

Cockfield's Pumpkin Festival

Calling all pumpkin enthusiasts - it's time to get picking your perfect Jack-o'-lantern. Celebrating all things pumpkin, Cockfield's Farm Park have a range of family-friendly activities available centred around the big, orange spheres of fruit. Meet and greet with farm animals, reptiles and rodents, or take a Halloween hayride on the tractor. You can pick up a pumpkin to take home with you as well. 

Where: Cockfields Farm Park
When: 14-29 October
Price: From £5
Tickets & more info: cockfields.co.uk

2023 09 04 Cockfields Pumpkin Festival
Pick up a pumpkin at Cockfield's Image: Cockfields Farm Park

Ember & The Vixens: Creepy Cabaret

Combining sexy and spooky, Selina Helliwell Productions presents a Halloween-themed cabaret show from Ember & The Vixens. Head down to the King's Arms for an evening of spooktacular entertainment featuring themed music, boo-tiful burlesque, spine-tingling spoken word and a whole host of ghoulish surprises. Strictly 18+. 

Where: King's Arms
When: 21 October
Price: £15 (+ booking)
Tickets & more info: fatsoma.com

2023 09 04 Ember The Vixens Creepy Cabaret
A night of female empowerment with a creepy Halloween twist Image: Ryan Morrison

The Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair

Bringing together over 200 of the UK's most talented creators and designers, the GNCCF showcases everything from ceramics, jewellery-making, textiles, glass art and more. Each exhibitor has been specially selected for their outstanding craftsmanship. Handmade one-off items are available to view and buy, ideal for Christmas gifting. 

Where: Victoria Baths
When: 19-22 October
Price: From £18.70 
Tickets & more info: greatnorthernevents.co.uk

2023 04 05 Victoria Baths Gala Pool
Get crafty in the gala pool Image: Victoria Baths


In true spooky season spirit, Odeon Great Northern will be transformed into a horror haven with four days of terrifying films. As well as movie premieres and re-released genre classics, there's the opportunity to attend filmmaker and cast Q&As, take part in pub quizzes, attend exclusive parties and collect autographs from special guests. 

Where: Odeon @ Great Northern Warehouse
When: 6-8 October
Price: From £35.50
Tickets & more info: grimmfest.com

2023 09 04 Grimmfest
Horror film buffs will be in their element Image: Grimmfest

Jonathan Schofield's Halloween Tours

On this tour there are tales of enchanters, broken hearted lovers, ghostly pig men and many other wonders of the supernatural world. AND all these stories are genuine Manchester stories. They are not gimmicks. The tour will also reveal some of the rich history of this magnificent city while delivering thrills and also lots of laughs. The tour finishes in a terrifying dark underground space where often strange and unaccountable things happen. 

Where: Central Library, St Peter's Square. M2 5PD. The tour finishes on Princess Street close to the junction with Whitworth Street. 
When: Sunday 29 October (4pm, 6.30pm), Tuesday 31 October (6pm, 8pm)Price: £20   Tickets & more info: Jonathan Schofield Tours 

It'll be screamy good in October Image: Jonathan Schofield Tours

Manchester Literature Festival

Bookworms and spoken word superfans, this one is for you. Manchester Literature Festival is back with another thought-provoking programme of events designed to celebrate imagination, creativity and ideas. Taking place across the city in a whole host of different venues, avid readers can get up close and personal with some of their favourite authors. 

Where: Various venues across the city
When: 7-22 October
Price: From £0
Tickets & more info: quaytickets.com

2023 09 04 Manchester Literature Festival
Let's make the whole city a bookclub Image: Manchester Literature Festival

Queen by Candlelight

Under Pressure to find the perfect date night? Satisfy that Crazy Little Thing Called Love and enjoy A Kind of Magic that only music by iconic 80s rock band Queen can bring. What could be better than that? Hundreds of candles and a cast of live West End singers, of course. You'll be having such a good time (having a ball).

Where: Manchester Opera House
When: 6 October
Price: From £31.75 (+ booking)
Tickets & more info: atgtickets.com

2023 09 04 Freddie Mercury Performing In New Haven Ct November 1977
It's what Freddie would have wanted Image: Carl Lender/Wikimedia Commons

Romeo & Juliet

Making his Royal Exchange Theatre debut, theatre and film director Nicholai La Barrie provides a moving evening of entertainment with his rendition of Shakespeare's tragic love story between Montagues and Capulets. This contemporary adaptation is being described as 'a love-letter to Manchester', celebrating youth, love and aspiration as a beacon of hope during troubled times.

Where: Royal Exchange Theatre
When: 20 October - 18 November
Price: From £10
Tickets & more info: royalexchange.co.uk

2023 09 04 Royal Exchange Theatre
Wherefore art thou, theatre-goer? Image: Royal Exchange Theatre/Nicholai La Barrie

Scare City

As if the abandoned Camelot theme park site wasn't creepy enough by nightfall, this October, Scare City is set to return for its fourth year. With 10 terrifying zones, including four brand-new indoor mazes complete with goulish live actors, this immersive horror experience is great fun as well as very scary.

Where: Camelot Theme Park
When: 6-31 October
Price: From £25 (+ booking)
Tickets & more info: scarecity.co.uk

2023 09 04 Scare City Experience
You might want to bring a spare pair of pants to this one... Image: Scare City

Know of anything interesting coming up? Let me know on Twitter: @Harley__Young or drop me an email: harleyy@confidentials.com

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