A group of people playing instruments outside

Greater Manchester Town of Culture

The Town of Culture accolade is an annual award highlighting the distinctive creativity and diversity of one of Greater Manchester’s many towns, putting a spotlight on the remarkable art, culture and heritage that exists across Greater Manchester.

The award is based on the UK City of Culture concept, which was introduced in 2009 by Greater Manchester Mayor, Andy Burnham, when he was Culture Secretary, built on the success of Liverpool’s year as European Capital of Culture in 2008.

The town receives a £50,000 grant from the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) Culture Fund to develop a programme of cultural events and activities celebrating unique heritage and bringing new opportunities for residents and visitors.

2024 Town of Culture: Bolton named as Greater Manchester Town of Culture 2024

2023 Town of Culture: Stockport Awarded Town of Culture 2023 - One Stockport

2022 Town of Culture: Stalybridge Town of Culture 2022 (tameside.gov.uk)

2020 Town of Culture: Bury named Greater Manchester's first Town of Culture

Bury was Greater Manchester’s inaugural Town of Culture in 2020 and held the title during 2021 throughout the COVID 19 pandemic. The town curated and delivered a hybrid programme of live and virtual events, including the Happy Festival and the two-week Burrs Live festival.