Summer at the Quays


Walking on water, fencing, NEW family galleries, opera and monthly artisan food markets are just some of the incredible events taking place at The Quays this summer!

Housed in one square mile of waterfront attractions, The Quays offers an array of exciting attractions for all to see. Boasting some of the UK’s most iconic venues, as well as a selection of top bars and restaurants and hotels, The Quays is a one-stop destination for entertainment, arts, culture and shopping!

Experience the award-winning IWM North, part of Imperial War Museums, with its range of compelling exhibitions, tours and family activities. This summer visitors can experience a truly action packed calendar of activities with its ‘Fit For Action’ programme. Ever wanted to see dry-land synchronised swimming or learn how to commando crawl without the mud? Well now you can! Over the summer, visitors are invited to shape up and learn new skills through a variety of free and unusual activities including fencing, shelter building, juggling and dance. (From Saturday 20 July to Thursday 4 September)

The highlight of the summer, The Quays Festival (Saturday 20 July) will feature a specially commissioned performance across the waters’ surface, 'WATER FOOLS' by Ilotopie. This extraordinary 50 min outdoor performance comes to The Quays for one night only. Taking place on the dock between The Lowry and the BBC, this is a story of how a man’s humdrum life is turned upside down when his head inexplicably bursts into flames and a kaleidoscope of extraordinary things begin to happen. Everyday objects turn into mythical creatures; cars pull caravans and Gods march into battle as a towering queen gazes over her aquatic domain from the seat of a giant penny farthing. Ilotopie imagine the future of humanity in all its grandeur and frailty and all whilst “walking on water”.

A spectacular waterside venue housing theatres, galleries, a restaurant, cafe and bar, The Lowry offers visitors the chance to enjoy the very best in visual art and performance and NEW for the summer is the launch of its Family Galleries.

Launching on 22-23 June, the Lowry Outlet Shopping Centre is bringing quality gourmet foods and award winning producers to its Plaza area, with the launch of its new monthly Waterside Market.  Spanning the Lowry Outlet’s Plaza, the open-air market will host over 30 stalls; transforming the Centre’s outdoors space into a bustling market place. Offering the finest seasonal produce from around the country and even further afield, the Waterside Markets will sell everything from artisan breads to hand-made chocolates, the local cheeses, homemade chutneys, olive oils and award-winning sausages. An abundance of pies, pastas, cakes will also be available to shop – there’s even a Portuguese deli! 

What’s more Titan the Robot will also make an appearance at the Lowry Outlet on the August bank holiday. This larger than life character will be entertaining kids and adults alike throughout the whole weekend!

Take a boat ride in the summer sun along Manchester’s historic ship canal and explore the city’s picturesque scenery with Manchester Cruises – a brand new sightseeing venture for all the family.

MediaCity UKwill also host a series of exciting ‘Summer In The City’ events, including screening this year’s Royal Opera House BP Big Screen performances live from Covent Garden to the outdoor screen on the Piazza, MediaCityUK. This free event will feature The Royal Opera’s La rondine on Thursday 11 July and Tosca on Thursday 18 July. The Piazza will also transform into a style-solving hub as the new Gok Live: Stripping For Summer will be broadcast live this summer. This huge themed catwalk show will be packed with hot tips on how to look good in the sun and Gok will be on hand to show every woman, no matter what her size or body shape, that she can look fabulous in a bikini or swimsuit – they’re also looking for real women to take part and strut their stuff!

With too much to see for just a day trip, take the opportunity to rest your head at one of the top-quality, yet affordable hotels in the area, including The Old Trafford Lodge at Emirates Old Trafford, home of Lancashire County Cricket Club,and theCopthorne Hotel Manchester, which offersits very own Children’s Concierge, ‘Ask Alfred’, service. This unique offering can be added upon booking and features a children’s welcome pack, which includes a teddy bear, bathrobe, toiletries, ice cream on arrival, sweets and a parent’s survival guide!


For more information, visit

Like us on Facebook:

Follow us on Twitter: @quays_partnership

Please follow us and share this post: