Cheetham Festival is inviting residents and visitors alike to join a colourful celebration of creed and culture.
From Friday 11 to Sunday 14 September, Cheetham's places of worship, museums and other cultural centres are throwing open their doors for a weekend-long cultural celebration.
The festival, which reflects the strong sense of belonging shared by the different faith and cultural communities in this lively part of the city, is celebrating its sixth anniversary this year.
Organised by the Cheetham Festival Committee in partnership with Manchester City Council, the festival also links into the Council's Proud of Manchester campaign, which recognises good citizenship and the positive points of living in the city.
All Cheetham Festival events are free. And as usual, there are a diverse range of attractions on offer, culminating in a guided coach tour which starts at the bottom of Cheetham Hill and makes its way up past the area's key spiritual and historic areas.
Irish eyes will be smiling as the weekend springs into action on Friday 11 September with a feast of music and dance, including a full Irish supper, at the Irish World Heritage Centre on Queens Road from 7.30-9.30pm.
Trinity United Church plays host on Friday 11 and Saturday 12 September from 10.30am - 4pm, to an open event to examine the power of prayer and looks at different ways that people can pray.
The Museum of Transport on Boyle Street offers visitors a chance to get fired up over its heritage vehicles and travel back in time to the last century on Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 September from 10am-4.30pm.
Dashmesh Sikh Temple in Heywood Street offers visitors a chance to learn more about Sikh religion and traditions while sampling a variety of vegetarian dishes in its langar, or 'free kitchen' on Saturday 12 September 10am-4pm. The langar is a key feature of Sikh life where everyone, regardless of their faith or background, is invited to share in a free meal at the temple.
This year's Cheetham Festival falls within the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Alongside the tradition of fasting, Muslims are encouraged to enter into the spirit of giving and sharing. The Al Khizra Mosque on Brideoak Street extends a warm welcome to everyone to share in the Iftar meal to 'break the fast' shortly after sunset at around 7pm on Saturday 12 September.
Higher Crumpsall Synagogue on Bury Old Road is a Grade II-listed building, dating back to the 1920s, with fine art deco windows. Dr Sharman Kadish, author of 'Jewish Heritage in England, an Architectural Guide' leads a guided tour of the building. Spend some time at the synagogue between 10am and 12 noon on Sunday 13 September, including the guided tour at 10.30am.
Manchester Jewish Museum, which is the oldest surviving synagogue in Manchester dating back to 1874, is serving food and drink from 12pm and a Klezmer band is performing twice at 1pm and 3pm.
The museum is also the final port of call of a guided walk taking in the sites and stories of Jewish settlement in Cheetham Hill on Sunday 13 September. It departs from Victoria Station at 12 noon, arriving at the museum around 2pm. Pre-booking is not necessary.
Manchester Cathedral is hosting a vivid, multimedia exhibition called Anne Frank (+you) on Saturday 13 September at 10am-12.30pm and Sunday 14 September from 1pm- 4pm. A series of audiovisual presentations relates the themes of Anne's celebrated diary to issues for today's teens. For more details and booking information, visit www.manchestercathedral.org
The festival closes with a guided coach tour of Cheetham, also on Sunday 13 September. Blue Badge Tour Guide and Manchester Confidential Editor Jonathan Schofield is the host for this panoramic tour of Cheetham giving details of its rich spiritual and architectural history. There are four stops on the tour as well as free refreshments at the Jewish Museum. It departs from Victoria Station at 2pm and returns there at 4.30pm. Places are limited. Call 0161 655 7850 to book a seat.
Councillor Mike Amesbury, Executive Member for Culture and Leisure at Manchester City Council, said: 'Cheetham is steeped in history and a strong tradition of welcoming different cultures. There's more than 18 different faith venues within Cheetham and this festival gives neighbours and visitors alike the chance to explore those faiths and go on a diverse cultural journey.'
The Rev Daniel Burton, priest in charge at St John's Church and festival committee chairman, said: 'It's wonderful to have an event that celebrates a whole range of different faiths and ethnic backgrounds and shows how they can live together side by side.'
Cheetham Festival is part of the nationwide Heritage Open Days event. For more information about the festival contact The Rev Burton on 0161 205 1734.