Dry January - No problem "Things to do in Rochdale"

Have you given up drinking for Dry January? Then you’ll need to replace your down time with something different indeed – and we’ve got just the thing.

If you’re looking for fun things to do that don’t involve drinking, Rochdale Town Centre  is awash with activities that certainly fit the bill. There’s no need to drink to have a great time!!

Pioneers Museum

The Rochdale Pioneers Museum is widely regarded as the home of the worldwide Co-operative movement.

It's the perfect place to come and see how your ancestors did their shopping. Here in Toad Lane on December 21 1844, the Rochdale Equitable Pioneers Society opened their first little store selling pure, unadulterated food at fair prices and honest weights and measures.

The Pioneers started a revolution in retailing which has played a significant part in our lives ever since. The ground floor faithfully recreates the original shop together with its rudimentary furniture and scales. Here the basic needs of daily life such as butter, sugar, flour and oatmeal first went on sale over 150 years ago.

In the display and exhibition area you can learn of the inspiration the Pioneers received from visionaries such as the great social reformer Robert Owen; see how the profits from the shop were returned to the members in the form of a 'dividend'; and watch the story unfold of the Co-op's subsequent success. The Pioneers used the room upstairs to provide members with further education. Now you can journey back in time as you view examples of early advertising, packaging and retailing artefacts. Special displays feature a unique collection of Co-operative postage stamps, commemorative china and plateware and rare dividend coins and commodity tokens.

31 Toad Lane, Rochdale, Greater Manchester, OL12 0NU

Broadfield Park

Rochdale's town centre park, the oldest in the borough, is of great historic interest and contains the statue of John Bright MP. Of considerable landscape beauty and charm with significant views of the area, the park extends into the town centre. It is also a popular venue for various outdoor events.

The park has four distinct areas. Broadfield Park itself is on a level site and has a formal layout. Sparrow Hill, to the west of the formal area, has sepentine paths and a small lake. Broadfield Slopes, to the north of Sparrow Hill, has massive earth terraces following the contours of the hill and providing platforms for views across the Pennines to the north. Packer Spout and St Chad's Gardens, to the south-east of the Town Hall, have a formally laid out path system connected by flights of stone steps.

The park has been extensively refurbished and contains a Victorian-style bandstand, bowling greens, and a play area for children.

The park has multiple entrances.

Greater Fire Station Museum

This unusual museum offers visitors the opportunity to explore the fascinating history of fire fighting within Greater Manchester. It includes many varied exhibits, including fire appliances in period settings, such as a Victorian street, fire station and 1940 Blitz scene.

The museum is based in the 1930s Rochdale Fire Station, an interesting architectural building itself.

The museum is open every Friday, and themed open days are held on the first Sunday of every month.

Maclure Road, Rochdale, OL11 1DN

Coffee Trail

Whether you are a lover of lattes, mad about mocha or all about the simplicity of an Americano, your coffee of choice could see you help both local businesses and the environment.

A number of independent businesses are participating in Rochdale’s coffee trail, introduced by the Rochdale Business Improvement District.

Collect a stamp at all participating venues and you will receive a free reusable coffee cup, created from recycled plastic, specially designed by The Paper Concept, which provides high quality alternatives to single-use plastics.

The Rochdale BID Coffee Trail is the perfect blend of helping our independent businesses whilst helping the environment.

Stamps can be collected at:

  • The Medicine Tap, The Esplanade
  • Pudding Paradise, Yorkshire Street
  • Roasted and Toasted, The Butts
  • Abaco, Rochdale Interchange
  • Arts Café, Touchstones
  • Russells, Wheatsheaf Centre
  • Clock Tower, Rochdale Town Hall

So go ahead and enjoy your morning java, a caffeine buzz made all that bit sweeter knowing you are helping both local businesses and the environment.

Touchstones - Museum, Cafe & Art Gallery

A permanent museum which aims to tell the history of Rochdale. There are interactive exhibits, films, audios and objects from the borough's collection on display.

4 gallery spaces with temporary exhibitions showcased throughout the year. With a variety of different exhibitions, collections can include those from the local community, selections from the borough's impressive art collection, historical items and work from contemporary artists.

Art Cafe open Tuesday-Saturday, 10am-4pm. Serving a wide selection of hot and cold food, drinks and snack

The Esplanade, Rochdale, Greater Manchester, OL16 1AQ

Take a tour of Rochdale Town Hall         

Rochdale's fabulous Grade-I Victorian Gothic town hall is renowned worldwide for its unique and detailed architecture.

Take an expertly guided tour and marvel at the wonderful craftsmanship, immerse yourself in the building’s history and take a look inside the Mayor’s Parlour.

The Esplanade, Rochdale, Postcode: OL16 1AB

Have a look at some of the venues, on our Rochdale360.....click the link below:


13 Jan 2020