Gallery Oldham is holding a poetry workshop inspired by the work of local artist Dave Ball on Saturday from 11am as part of National Storytelling Weekand. Tickets are £5.

If you’re not keen on writing yourself, head to Elizabeth Gaskell’s house on Sunday from 2pm for the launch of Robert Nicholls’ book ’50 Gems of Lancashire, a book outlining the history and heritage of some of the most iconic places in the county.

Also on Sunday, Manchester’s newest alternative shopping and entertainment event the Rogue Valentine Fair is at The Frog and Bucket from midday until 5pm. With stalls featuring burlesque, vintage, rockabilly, gothic, alternative, fetish, steampunk, accessories, jewellery, artwork and more, all under one roof, you can spend the afternoon shopping whilst top Rogue performers put on displays. This one is for over 18’s only.

Mental Health Foundation Live

UAM have teamed up with MHF Live for a UK first which encourages musicians and music lovers to host their own events to raise awareness of, and money for, mental health. Many of the people hosting events are musicians or music lovers with personal experience of mental illness.

Kene Clayton, who recently lost a friend to suicide, is organising an MHF live event which will showcase some amazing raw talent in grime, funk, hip hop, reggae and more. Some of the acts have taken part in a Q&A about why they’re getting involved which you can see here.

Saturday 2nd January at Joshua Brooks. Tickets still available from £6.

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Manchester Indie Book Fair

Dostoyevsky Wannabe

Fresh from organising their first Manchester Indie Book Fair last summer, Manchester-based publisher Dostoyevsky Wannabe team up with the Anthony Burgess Foundation to hold Manchester Indie Book Fair 2.

In keeping with the first event, the emphasis is on an unbuttoned, relaxed afternoon showcasing the wealth of indie literary activity in these parts.

There’ll be no formal programme of events on the day and no spoons tapping onto wine glasses or rattling of jewellery to grab your attention, so just go down for the afternoon to meet new book lovers, buy some new (old) books and have an enjoyable afternoon.

There will be music to accompany your browsing courtesy of Astronaut Wives Club and Dostoyevsky Wannabe DJs which will encourage you to stick around in the Anthony Burgess bar for refreshments.

Alongside Dostoyevsky Wannabe, there will be a number of presses including:
If P then Q, Comma Press, Generic Greeting, Nightjar, Carcanet, Dodo Ink, Zimzalla, Knives, Forks and Spoons, Incline and Saraband.

Saturday 2nd February from 12pm – 6pm at the International Anthony Burgess Foundation. Free.

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Manchester Folk Horror Festival

The Manchester Folk Horror Festival returns taking in a host of new and interesting participants. There’s a slightly more hauntological bent to the music, some real surprises and a host of independent films.

The current folk horror revival in British cinema reflects a wider trend of re-discovery and re-enchantment. The Peer Hat will be looking to reflect this phenomenon, with not just a programme of music and film, but also activities and workshops.

Part of the festival will include a panel discussion featuring academics and experts chaired by Julian Holloway from Manchester Metropolitan University.

The festival takes place on 2nd February at Northern Quarter venues The Peer Hat and Aatma, 14-16 Faraday Street, Manchester. Live performances start at 3pm and film screenings at 6.30pm.

Tickets are £10 plus booking fee (unless purchased on the door) and are limited.

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