The citywide festival entered double figures with one of its most vibrant parades yet

Its spectacular parade has seen everything from Archimedes in his bathtub to green boggarts and giant polar bears, attracting tens of thousands of spectators from across the world. But Manchester Day is more than a parade: it’s a celebration of inclusivity, collaboration and a proud testament to multicultural Manchester - for its people, by its people. 

That’s why the free family event celebrated its tenth anniversary last Sunday with the theme of ’10 out of 10’: awarding top marks to the city’s cultures, communities and astounding achievements across industry, science, music, fashion, education and sport. 

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Creatives from Brazil, Croatia, Egypt and Kerala joined Walk the Plank to create this year’s parade

This year’s parade saw over 40 community groups take part in a colourful pageant, each of whom created their own individual response to the theme 10/10. Leading proceedings was a collaborative piece that celebrated the spirit of modern Manchester, and a diverse range of subjects and achievements were brought to life through incredible floats and costumes. 

Manchester Splash Community Swimming Club commemorated Ethel Sunny Lowry, a Victoria Baths regular and the first woman to cross the English Channel, while Oldham’s One Eyed Theatre showcased the industrial heritage of the city with their steam punk-inspired mix of cogs and wheels. 

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Creators Walk the Plank have been applauded for their green approach to the carnival, with floats made from recycled or sustainable materials and avoiding the use of petrol power

Global cultures were represented by an array of groups including: Bangladeshi organisation Anamika, Colibri Mexican Folkdance UK group, Manchester Chinese Centre, Filipino Anglo Club, Indian Association Manchester, Caribbean group KYSO and the British Pakistani Cultural Association.

The parade also gave the chance for important voices and causes to be heard, including the endangered orangutan - represented by the Voice of Ansi - and Manchester Young Lives, who work with disadvantaged youths. 

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LGBTQ+ charity The Men’s Room celebrated the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with a t-shirt design by Chinese artists Ai Weiwei

Councillor Pat Karney, Chair of Manchester Day, said: “Ten years ago, when we set out to celebrate all the things which make Manchester great, we would never have imagined just how quickly Manchester Day was taken into people’s hearts.

“Manchester has gone through so much in the past ten years. We have had soaring highs and desperate lows. But what has never changed is the enduring spirit of the people of this city. This day has always been about them and I am so proud that we have been able to reach this milestone.

“It’s not often that I’m lost for words but on days like today it’s hard to express how proud you feel to see thousands of people parading through Deansgate united by the common bond we all share - our love of Manchester.” 

Here are some snaps from the day…

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Photos: Mark Waugh