Manchester Metropolitan University, 11-13 April 2022

  • Brookes Building, Manchester Metropolitan University

Visiting Manchester

Useful tourist information for visiting Manchester, including shopping, places of interest, food and drink.

More information can be found on the Visit Manchester website.

We have listed some of our favourites below:

Places of interest

See our library social media team’s blog post a boring guide to Manchester by a bunch of boring people for MMU Librarians' suggestions of great places and experiences!

The John Rylands Library 

Founded by Enriqueta Rylands in memory of her husband John Rylands the library was designed by architect Basil Champneys in 1889. The striking gothic building took ten years to build and was opened to the public in January 1900. The library became part of the University of Manchester in 1972 and holds their Special Collections including over 250,000 printed volumes and well over a million manuscripts and archival items.

Imperial War Museum North (IWM North) 

Purpose-built to tell the powerful stories of over a century of war, IWM North delivers an award-winning immersive experience. IWM North tells powerful stories about the impact of war on our world, from the First World War to the present day. Only a 25 minute tram ride away from the centre of Manchester.

Whitworth Art Gallery

Whitworth Art Gallery is a 25 minute walk from the conference venue. Part of the University of Manchester the Whitworth Art Gallery is historic and contemporary, academic and playful. Founded in 1889 as the first English gallery in a park, the Whitworth has been transformed by a £15 million development, which not only has seen the gallery double in size – it has fully integrated it into the park too!


Located in close to the centre of Manchester, Spinningfields is one of Europe’s most successful urban regeneration projects, creating an entire new quarter in the city. Spinningfields is home to the People’s History Museum and The Little Library as well as being a social space to eat drink and shop!


Manchester Craft and Design Centre 

An Inspirational place to discover handmade Craft & Design, Manchester Craft and Design Centre is home to the studios of some of the region’s most talented artists, designers and makers. Come and see our talented makers at work, be inspired by our changing exhibitions and events, or learn a new skill yourself by taking part in a workshop. You can also grab a tasty homemade bite to eat and a brew at Oak Street Cafe – all in the beautiful surroundings of our historic Victorian fishmarket built in 1873.

Northern Quarter 

Manchester's creative, urban heart, the Northern Quater is home to countless independent fashion stores, record shops, cafés, bars and restaurants and the world famous Afflecks Palace, providing affordable outlets for independent designers and traders across four floors.


Oklahoma is Manchester’s favourite Gift & Homeware Store, located in the city’s bohemian district, the Northern Quarter. Established in 1997, Oklahoma specialises in unique and quirky gifts and homeware.

The Royal Exchange Manchester 

The Royal Exchange Manchester is an eclectic collection of luxury retailers, premium high street brands and best in class independent boutique shops playing a key role in Manchester’s thriving shopping and lifestyle culture. It is also home to the much-loved Royal Exchange Theatre.

Exchange Square 

The Square offers access to many city centre shopping experiences, including Selfridges, Louis Vuitton, Harvey Nichols and The Arndale Centre.

Food and Drink

The city centre offers a wide range of places to eat and drink:

  • Zouk - Indian and Pakistani cuisine, the lunchtime Tiffin menu is great value for money.

  • Sandbar - Occupying one of the last industrial era mills, this bar is a favorite with students and academics. There is an extensive beer selection and very reasonably priced pizzas with vegetarian and vegan options available from 12pm until 10pm. The majority of the draught beers are also vegan. Please be aware that this is a cashless bar.

  • Hatch - Vibrant outdoor pop up destination on Oxford Road with independent retailers, breweries and eateries.

  • Salvi's Cucina - Rustic Italian restaurant serving authentic Neapolitan cuisine at affordable prices.

  • Bundobust - Vegetarian Gujarat-inspired street food and an extensive range of craft ale, a favourite of Jay Raynor, the Observer’s food critic. Situated close to Manchester’s vibrant Northern Quarter.

  • Dimitris - Traditional Greek meze/tapas restaurant situated in the Deansgate area.

  • The Little Yang Sing - Authentic Chinese cuisine in the heart of China Town with a large selection of vegetarian options.

  • The Molly House - Cosy bar located off Canal Street with a good selection of wines, ales and cocktails. Also serves burgers and tapas.

Bars and Nightlife

  • The Gas Lamp - Quirky Victorian underground drinking den serving an extensive range of craft ales. Housed in the former Manchester & Salford Children’s Mission building you could easily miss the small doorway leading downstairs so look out for the Gas Lamp sign outside!

  • Mojo - Lively cocktail bar serving food, with DJs playing old school punk and rock & roll until 4am.

  • Arcane - Secret cocktail bar, which looks like a bookshop from the outside. Situated in the basement of the historic Queens Chambers building this is a hidden gem!

  • Alberts Schloss - Manchester’s first bohemian bier palace, cook haus and bakery. Live music and DJs until 2am

  • The Deaf Institute - Housed in a historic Manchester building originally built in 1878, the main bar serves drinks and food and the music hall upstairs hosts live gigs, comedy and club nights.

  • Yes - Popular with students, this bar is situated over 4 floors with live music, DJs, film screenings and a roof terrace. Serving a variety of pizzas you can buy by the slice, chicken burgers and vegan burgers all at very reasonable prices.

  • The Refuge - Upmarket, spacious public bar and restaurant in the Principal Hotel on Oxford Road. Impressive space featuring an indoor winter garden.

  • HOME - A centre for international contemporary art, theatre and film which was formed in 2015 by the merger of two arts organisations, The Cornerhouse and the Library Theatre Company. There is a bar on the ground floor, a restaurant on the first floor and a cinema bar and roof terrace.

  • The Odeon - Cinema situated in the Great Northern building which was originally built by the Great Northern Railway between 1896-1898. The building is also home to several eateries and bars.

(image credit: University of Manchester's John Rylands Library by Vita Student licenced under CC BY 2.0)

Present @ LILAC

LILAC is great opportunity for our fellow professionals to present their ideas, share best practice and show case new thinking in our sector. If you have an idea then we'd love to hear about it. We have many options for the types of sessions you might run from a symposium to a workshop. Visit our Call for Presentations page to find out how to apply.

Book your place

Places at this year's conference are likely to be in demand more than ever before. Each year our conference grows increasingly popular and this year promises to be no different. Don't miss out and book your place now for this year's conference.
We look forward to seeing you there!

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Manchester Metropolitan University, 11-13 April 2022

Manchester Metropolitan University, 11-13 April 2022