Exhibitions across Festival of Libraries 2023

7 June 2023 - News
Why not take in something new with the an array of exhibitions in place in libraries across Greater Manchester to celebrate the Festival this year.

There’s no need to pay to access any of these exciting exhibitions, simply double check the library opening times ahead of your visit and pop along and see. If you’d like any access information across each library you can find that here.


Rainbow Library, Pendleton Library, Salford

Explore our groundbreaking collection of new and original writing on the theme of ‘Queering Fairytales’ from young LGBTQ+ writers in Manchester at Pendleton Library in Salford.

In 2022 a group organised by Manchester City of Literature began writing their stories, which are now on display for the first time during the Festival of Libraries 2023, come and visit, read the stories and celebrate LGBTQ+ writing ahead of the Queer Joy conference taking place with the writers in November.


Post-Covid Cities, Bury Library, Bury

In 2020, the hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic across the world’s population stimulated discussion about how cities would function post-COVID-19. Angoulême in France, a fellow UNESCO City of Literature with a rich history of celebrating comic books and graphic novels, launched a competition to find those visions, hopes and fears of a post-COVID world from other UNESCO cities.

For the Festival of Libraries 2023, we have collated ten entries from our UNESCO Cities of Literature, along with a brief insight from the artists about their work. If you love comics you must come and see the exhibition at Bury Libraries – the town’s twinned city in France.


Make Mine Manga, Bolton Central Library, Bolton

Make Mine Manga is for anyone who is curious about Manga as well as the avid fan. It’s drawn from material from the Kyoto Manga Museum and have been specially created by Paul Gravett, Comic Publisher, fan and author of ‘Manga: 60 years of Japanese Comics’.

Manga have become a pop-culture phenomenon in the UK and more and more people are reading them. Six of the top ten bestselling graphic novelists in Britain are Japanese manga authors. In the exhibition, explore how these comics evolved first in Japan and how their brilliant creators continue to expand the medium. And discover today’s generation of award-winning British talents making manga their own way into a truly global language.

In partnership with the The Lakes International Comic Art Festival (LICAF).


Schools Writing Trail, Various locations, Manchester City Centre

The Schools Writing Trail (pictured in the feature image at the top of the page) is an exhibition of some of the very best student writing in Manchester. There are over 100 young writers, writing in 12 languages, whose poetry, fiction, and imagination feature in the exhibition. The Trail is a walkable constellation of young voices connecting community arts centres, schools, universities, and libraries with over 40 schools in Greater Manchester. The Schools Writing Trail is a celebration of the young writers who are a vibrant part of what makes Manchester a UNESCO City of Literature. You can find more information and which venues to find the trail at in the official event post.


Workers Playtime, The John Rylands Research Institute and Library, Manchester

Join The John Rylands Research Institute and Library for a tour of the exhibition that goes beyond the factories to explore how workers aspired for better lives and creative expression through political, economic, and cultural self-organisation in Lancashire’s historic urban communities. Explore collections that bring to life the clubs, societies and traditional leisure pursuits of local working-class people.


Find out more information about each exhibition and more via the content linked below, we hope to see you there and please feel free to take photo’s of the exhibitions along the way and tag us on social media!