Most Museums and art galleries in Manchester close at 5pm during the week, which is a bit rubbish for anyone that works 9-5 and doesn’t fancy the weekend crowds. What’s awesome though, is that there’s a number of places which have regular evening open hours, quite often with special events and entertainment on too.
Here’s my rundown of museums in Manchester that you can visit at night and they’re free!
Mcr Museum After Hours – Open every Thursday until 9pm
Awesome evening @McrMuseum hearing all about their new South Asia Gallery, seeing some of the exhibits, meeting awesome people and talking to the curators & co-curators! What they’re doing here is so different and it’s inspiring #MMhellofuture pic.twitter.com/jMDUSOVExx
— nazma (@nazma_knows) March 28, 2019
Situated on Oxford Road, by Manchester University, Manchester Museum is home of Costa Rican frogs, fossils, ancient Egyptian mummies, seasonal exhibitions and more. A large part of the museum is actually closed right now (including the Egyptian mummies) as part of an exciting expansion which will see, among other things, the opening of a new gallery celebrating South Asian heritage.
There’s still plenty to see in the parts of the museum that are open, and on they tend to host special events for their late night openings too.
Keep an eye on the Manchester Museum website for info on what’s on.
Thursday Lates – Open every Thursday until 9pm
Another one on Oxford Road, close to Manchester University, opposite Manchester Royal Infirmary the other hospitals, The Whitworth Art Gallery is somewhere I visit pretty regularly. They have some great permanent exhibitions and there’s always some amazing thought provoking temporary exhibitions on too.
For their Thursday Lates events, they have music, talks, one off screenings and it’s generally just a nice atmosphere to explore the gallery.
Check out their Thursday Lates info page to see what’s coming up.
People’s History Museum
Radical Lates – every second Thursday of the month open until 8pm
You’ll find The People’s History Museum in the Spinningfields area of the Manchester city centre. This museum is dedicated to “democracy, telling the story of its development in Britain: past, present, and future.”
Their Radical Lates events are a chance to explore the museum and they also have special events on too. Find out what’s on via the PPH Website.
Manchester Art Gallery
First Wednesdays – the first Wednesday of the month (excluding January) open until 9pm
For their late open evenings, Manchester Art Gallery, put on a host of activities to bring the gallery to life, from artists in conversation, to live music, poetry and performances.
Whether you’re there for to see a specific artist, or just in the mood for a browse, it’s an interesting space to explore. With their permanent collections in what I would call a “traditional” gallery setting and more experimental modern art housed across the glass atrium.
Find out what’s showing over on the Manchester Art Gallery website.
Centre for Chinese Contemporary Art
Thursday Lates – the last Thursday of the month open until 8pm
The CFCCA is situated in the Northern Quarter part of Manchester city centre and describes itself as “the national lead in bringing Chinese contemporary art and visual culture to a UK audience”
On the last Thursday of the month, for their Thursday Lates, as well as getting an evening view of what’s on, they also host workshops and other things to do related to the exhibitions.
Find out what’s on by checking the CFCCA website.