A Rubbish Night at the Museum

event on
19 April

Do residents in Manchester have to live surrounded by rubbish? Or can we change it?

If you care about Manchester, our neighbourhoods, our communities, and our international reputation, then let’s talk about rubbish.

Join us for “A Rubbish Night at the Museum”.

The aim is simple and ambitious. We want to challenge and inspire the universities, councils, businesses, waste authorities and residents to work together to build the intellectual and practical capacity to deal with rubbish.

Mayor Andy Burnham wants Greater Manchester to become a “world leading cleaner and greener city region“. Yet visitors and international students compare Manchester with their home cities as they step over filth and rubbish.

As one international student put it in a recent research interview “Maybe this is how British people live”.

This event

We want this to be an engaging, enjoyable and memorable event, where we face the Manchester mess, question current policy, and try to improve the future for us all.

There will be over 60 displays of photographs, art work, policy quotes, innovation and research findings, including comments from Manchester residents.

Thursday evening, 19th April 6-9pm is the main event. As well as the displays, there will be conversations, readings, panel discussions and great food.

It will occupy the whole of the beautiful top floor of the Manchester Museum, with direct lift access from the entrance archway on Oxford Rd.

The displays will then remain in place from Friday to Sunday – the Earth Day weekend. Some of the contributors will join conversations on those days too.

Children: there will be fun activities for children on the Saturday, as part of the Museum’s Earth Day activities.

Food and drink

On Thursday evening, canapes / nibbles / snacks will be served from 6-8pm by Real Junk Food Manchester. They offer impressive fine dining and catering, from food sourced directly from suppliers that would otherwise go to waste.

The food will include vegan, meat and gluten free options, and both savoury and sweet. As in their restaurant, it will be served on a “pay what you feel” basis.

Drinks, tea and coffee will be available from the Museum bar.

Everyone welcome

The event is for residents, neighbours, policy makers, international and UK students, academics, businesses, waste operators, and everyone interested in reducing waste and rubbish across Greater Manchester.

(If you have the privilege of being paid to deal with GM rubbish professionally, then consider it your job to be there!)

Bring friends and neighbours to enjoy it together, to build collaborations in your area, and to connect with people in other areas.


Register for the event via Eventbrite.


Provisional programme

Main area

6.00 – 9.00 Displays and conversations. Drinks, tea & coffee.

6.00 – 8.00 Canapes served by Real Junk Food Manchester.

Event space

6.00 – 6.30 Displays, canapes, drinks and conversations

6.30 – 6.40 Readings of resident experiences.

6.40 – 7.30 Public and panel discussion: what are the challenges, and what are the solutions? Resident experience and questions will direct and focus the discussion. Invited panel to include a waste/recycling policy maker, researcher, campaigner, and active resident.

7.30 – 8.00 Break: Displays, food, drinks and conversations.

8.00 – 8.40 Discussion: building a shared vision and commitment for ways forward.

8.40 – 8.50 Readings of resident experiences (repeat).

8.50 – 9.00 Networking and close.

Remember the 60+ displays will remain for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday daytime.


Event Details

Location Manchester Museum