Pixie Lott Support Act

Due to unforeseen circumstances and recording commitments, Jay James has informed us he is no longer performing at Warrington Festival.
We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and we hope you enjoy the festival.

£16m neighbourhood hub for west Warrington gets go-ahead

Plans to build a state-of-the-art integrated facility to provide leisure, health and cultural services in Great Sankey, Warrington have been approved.

Great Sankey Neighbourhood Hub

LiveWire’s proposal to transform the existing Great Sankey Leisure Centre into a neighbourhood hub was given the go-ahead at Warrington Borough Council’s planning committee meeting last night (Wednesday 5 August). Councillors voted unanimously in favour of the plans.

The dementia friendly facility will include a fitness suite, swimming pools, sports hall, tennis courts, 3G pitch, GP surgeries, library, cafe and health and wellbeing facilities including a spa. Construction on the first stage of the development will start later this year with phase 1 of the project set to open in Autumn 2016.

The £16 million project will revamp the existing centre to provide residents with a one-stop-shop for all their Great Sankey Hub Aerial Shotleisure, health and wellbeing and cultural needs. Services will be delivered by LiveWire, Warrington Borough Council, Culture Warrington, the NHS, Warrington Clinical Commissioning Group and Health Plus.

More than 700 local residents took part in consultation exercises and in excess of 60 of their suggestions have been incorporated into the design of the hub. The building designs have been made dementia friendly to support local need.

To find out more information about the development, and to keep up to date with the latest news, visit www.greatsankeyneighbourhoodhub.co.uk

Culture Warrington to take part in BBC arts campaign

Culture Warrington to take part in BBC arts campaign

Thursday 13 August 2015, Free Admission
Drop in between 11am – 3pm
Pyramid, Palmyra Square, Warrington WA1 1BL
01925 442345

Warrington’s Pyramid will hold a glass bottle decoration workshop as part of the BBC’s Get Creative – a year-long celebration of British arts, culture and creativity.
Get Creative aims to boost creativity in the UK, as well as celebrating the millions of people already doing something artistic and creative every day. Culture Warrington is joining hundreds of organisations nationwide to become a Get Creative Champion.
The workshop organised by Blooming Art in partnership with Culture Warrington, will take place on Thursday 13 August from 11am until 3pm at Pyramid.

Gail Stubbings, founder of Blooming Art Classes Warrington, will lead the workshop in which art enthusiasts of all ages are welcome to drop in to Pyramid where they will be given the tools and opportunity to express themselves through the decoration of glass bottles.
The Get Creative campaign was launched on 19 February 2015 by BBC Arts in partnership with cultural movement What Next? and leading arts and cultural organisations across the country, including Culture at King’s, Voluntary Arts, 64 Million Artists, Fun Palaces, Cultural Learning Alliance and Arts Council England

Derek Dick, Exhibitions and Services Manager at Culture Warrington, said: ‘It’s fantastic that we are able champion a national campaign that celebrates arts, culture and creativity. With the range of activities on offer during the summer at Culture Warrington venues, I can confidently say there something to take part in creatively for all the family.”

Gail Stubbings, owner of Blooming Art Classes Warrington, said: “I am extremely excited to be working in partnership with Culture Warrington to offer a drop in art workshop to the community. I would encourage everyone to drop in and get creative this summer by putting their artistic skills to the test.”

Get Creative will also have its digital home on BBC Arts online and through the use of #bbcgetcreative on social media sites. Visit www.bbc.co.uk/getcreative for more details.

Culture Warrington Customer Feedback Survey

Customer Feedback Survey

Give us a few minutes of your time and you could win £50!

At Culture Warrington, we value feeback from our customers in order to evaluate and enhance our performance.  We would be grateful if you could take a few minutes to complete the relevant Customer Feedback Survey(s) below and proivde us with your opinions.

The surveys are completed anonymously but if you would like to be entered into the free prize draw, please complete your details at the end of the survey.  One lucky winner for each survey will receive a £50 gift voucher to spend on tickets at Pyramid & Parr Hall and Warrington Museum & Art Gallery.

Please complete this survey if you have attended any previous events at
Pyramid & Parr Hall or Warrington Museum & Art Gallery  

Culture Warrington Customer Survey

Please complete this survey if you have never attended any previous events at 
Pyramid & Parr Hall or Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

Culture Warrington Non-Customer Survey


Please complete this survey if you are completing the survey on behalf of your business

Culture Warrington Business2Business Survey


Culture Camp (School Holiday Activities)

Culture Camp


Zap! Bam! And Pow! your way through Summer at Culture Camp

Tuesday – Thursday 18-20 and 25-27 August.

Ages 7-14 years

Give your child the opportunity to reveal their hidden superpowers and discover skills they never knew they had at this year’s Superhero inspired Culture Camp. During the three day session they will work together to create their own action packed production that will feature music, song, dance and their own artwork. They will even get to perform their mini masterpiece on the final afternoon to family and friends. The three days of fun and excitement include –

• Writing their own lyrics and theme tune and playing along with musical instruments

• Creating a character with special super hero powers and an impressive costume (will their character fly or have super human strength or both!)

• Writing an original fun script for the production, with a focus on addressing some more serious issues such as recycling or cyberbullying

• Creating a storyboard and learning about direction

• Designing props, creating exciting costumes and learning their superhero’s signature moves!
Our sessions link with the curriculum as we aim to make learning fun. Our mission is to create lasting memories and a summer that your child won’t forger (and we promise to tire them out!)

The sessions start at 9.30am – 4.30pm

That sounds great, so how much does it cost?

£45 for the full three days (please provide them with lunch)

Each extra sibling costs £30

or take it day-by-day and pay £16.50 (but we do recommend coming for the full three days and they get to take part in the production from start to finish!)

Select your preferred dates and book now!


Culture Camp – Tuesday 18 August – Thursday 20 August – Book Now 

Culture Camp – Tuesday 25 August – Thursday 27 August – Book Now 


Are you planning to attend this event?
Let us know what you thought by providing
a review on Tripadvisor for our venue.


Mr Smith’s: Your Memories Wanted…

Mr Smith's pictured in the 1980s. Image (C) Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

Mr Smith’s pictured in the 1980s. Image (C) Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

Did you enjoy a film at the Ritz or ABC cinema, dance the night away at Mr Smith’s nightclub or were you a part of the audience for ‘The Hitman and Her’?  Do you have any memories, photos or items related to Mr Smith’s, the ABC or the Ritz cinemas that you can share with us? Warrington Museum & Art Gallery is developing an exhibition to commemorate and celebrate the iconic Mr Smith’s building and we need your help.

If you can help us please call into the Museum and leave your contact details with our Front of House team or contact Michelle Hill at the Museum on 01925-443536 or mhill1@culturewarrington.org.

Town’s young people dance and play tribute to Warrington’s role in World War 1

In Window on Warrington, young dancers aged 3 to 23 work together to make a moving tribute to the town’s part in World War 1.  They will be performing at Peninsula Barracks, Orford, base to the 75th Engineer Regiment, on Sunday 26 April.

The dancers will be part of three performances at 12.30pm, 2pm and 3.30pm in a 40 minute piece as part of a unique project that pays testament to the role of the town in World War I (1914 – 1919).  The performers in the 150+ strong ensemble include dancers drawn from Warrington and beyond, featuring, Fusion and Fused groups, Velocity, Edge Hill University and Edge FWD boys dance group, and Chorley Boys. . Tickets are free.  Places are limited and can be booked via the Wolves Foundation community@wolvesfoundation.com.

There will be a final performance at the Halliwell Jones Stadium  Saturday 20 June where 500 dancers will perform together as a culmination, following earlier stages of the project at the barracks in February and Warrington Museum & Art Gallery in November 2014.

Tickets are FREE and are available here.


Janey Moran, Cultural Engagement Manager for Culture Warrington, comments:

“This project in partnership with Warrington Wolves Foundation, funded by Arts Council England and LiveWire Warrington, is a legacy from the Rugby League World Cup 2013.  Alongside the profile and experience it gives to all the dancers involved, it gives young male dancers – still under represented in dance – the opportunity to grow their skills and horizons as they will work beside more experienced male contemporary dancers as role models.”  

“For everyone involved, the project has been a unique opportunity to perform on a large scale and to create work that responds to a specific place in the unique environment of the barracks.  It’s a project that makes big demands on younger dancers as they learn their craft.  It’s all about making a visual high impact and working in formations – very much like the drills that soldiers did in World War I and the armed forces do to this day.”  

Easter at Culture Warrington

Culture Club is a holiday programme in Warrington for children aged 3-12 and brought to you by Culture Warrington in partnership with Warrington Wolves Foundation. Every school holiday we provide specially themed activities at both Warrington Museum & Art Gallery and Pyramid arts centre.

Here’s what’s on this Easter…

Please note the Museum is closed on Good Friday and Easter Monday

Free Craft Activities at the Museum

Join us at the Museum for our free craft activities for kids! The fun starts at 10am and last admission is at 2:45pm. Suitable for ages 3-12, no booking required.

Tuesday 7 April
Bunny Bums

Thursday 9 April
Easter ‘Bunny’ting

Tuesday 14 April
King and Queen of Heart Crowns

Thursday 16 April
Spring Painting

Culture Camp at Pyramid

*** NEW *** Culture Camp consists of three days of arts, craft, dance, music and drama. Create props, write a script, make music, choreograph a dance routine and perform an original piece at the end of the week! The Camp is Tuesday 7 – Thursday 9 April and Tuesday 14 – Thursday 16 April and costs £40 per child (special Easter price) plus £25 per additional sibling (or £15 per child per day). Each day begins at 9:30am and finishes at 4:30pm. All our tutors are professional artists and we pride ourselves on offering fun, creative and safe workshops at Pyramid arts centre. Booking required – more info here.

Wolf Print Wednesday at Pyramid

Workshops exclusively for children aged 5+ with additional needs. Dance, drama, arts and crafts, drumming and storytelling. Full day: 10am-2pm; £8 per child. Half day: 10-11:30am or 12:30-2pm; £3 per child. Booking required – more info here.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Sarah Millican


We’re delighted to announce SARAH MILLICAN will bring her brand new ‘Outsider’ tour to Parr Hall on Tuesday 8 December 2015!

Tickets are priced at £25 and are on sale from 9am this Friday (27 March) via Box Office in person, over the phone: 01925 442345 and online: www.pyramidparrhall.com.

Sarah Millican: Outsider

In the past when you put Sarah Millican outside, she asked things like: ‘Why? Where is the taxi? Do I need a cardie?’ and said things like: ‘There’ll be wasps. I’ve nothing to sit on. Is that poo? Can we go home?’

But things have changed. Now she has outside slippers. She can tell a chaffinch from a tit (hey). But she still can’t tell if it’s an owl or her husband’s asthma.

Sarah Millican is venturing outside. Bring a cardie.

“To watch Sarah Millican is to watch a box of comedy fireworks going off” The Independent


De Profundis: From the Depths – exhibition review

Pete Regan was born in 1986, in Madrid, Spain into ‘una familia numerosa’ (a family of four or more children). His parents worked for a drug rehab charity, and this gave him and his siblings an understanding and affinity for outsiders and people on the margins of society.

This affinity with the marginalised has fed into Pete’s work – making him particularly sensitive and aware of the hardships we negotiate as human beings, the difficult tightrope that is living.
Publicised by mental health campaign Time to Change is De Profundis: From the Depths, Pete Regan’s current exhibition at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery (7 February – 2 May 2015). Pete offers a visual, aural and inspiring installation of his journey through cyclothymia, considered a milder form of bipolar disorder. The cumulative effect of a slideshow interspersed with sound, neon lighting, mirrors and photography offer fragmentary glimpses into the fluctuation of moods and the cyclical aspect of depression. The overall effect of the exhibition is of reflection and solitude, a secular yet seemingly spiritual or transcendent place.

With De Profundis: From the Depths Pete sets out to capture the breadth and depth of human experience. By his own admission, this exhibition was aimed at ‘my younger self’. As a younger man, Pete spent months in bed isolated by the darkest of depressions. In the depths of this turbulent, and seemingly inescapable numbness, Pete was given a camera and began exploring the world and finding beauty again despite the bleakest of moods.

Monastic voices reverberate through the corridor as one enters De Profundis. Images are scattered across the wall, sprouting volcano-like amid neon-tubes of lighting (red, yellow and blue). Sound, lighting and image combine to give the viewer a truly felt experience. A feeling not unlike entering the darkness of a cinema to re-emerge transformed and having to face the weather again (both inner and outer). It’s a feast for the senses, but somehow the cumulative effect is not of sensory overload.

Pete’s careful use of colour is strategic and helps to represent the gamut of human emotion. Crucially the black and white is not just that – but the deepest black. Pete also plays with the positive/negative duality of photography by offering us the whitest of white pictures – ghost-like, cold, almost eerie. Also on display are swathes of colour – but not just colour – colour in all its neon, glaring, night-infused garish glory. The neon tubes of lighting – are a reflection of this primary palette, building up the mood and tension of the whole exhibition. In this way, his thematic approach to colour reminds me of Vincent Gallo’s Buffalo 66, whose palette of muted Buffalo colours (red, blue and white) infuse his film only adding to the sense of melancholy.

The people in the images are transformed by this strange, other-worldly light and colour. A woman with a 1920s haircut is profiled and bathed in the deepest of reds. A young man with an intriguing, but slightly menacing smile is given the bluest of neon tinges to inhabit in. Faceless people gather in underpasses and at lonely bars. Empty tables protest that no-one dines at them. The re-entering into the world is not necessarily smooth, and Pete’s vision attests to this. The quieter, interior pictures reflect a starker reality of our inner worlds, perhaps peaceful, but a trapped peace.
Religious motifs appear in the pictures – suggestive of burden and heaviness. The use of the positive is redolent of another iconic sequence in Easy Rider, of the cemetery. Even though these alterations in mood are not drug-induced, they are suggestive of altered states.

(C) Tony Culpin

This allusive build-up of the artist’s own journey is also present in his films which are shown in conjunction with music varying in mood and pace. In a slideshow of the artist’s childhood, wonderfully accompanied by guitar music, by Liam Morgan there are again hints of the religious – a first-communion, the ancient glory of Roman ruins savaged by a bleak sun. This accentuation of tradition and statues is carefully echoed throughout the exhibition. The use of the circle in the slideshow is also a motif in the circular pictures of the seasons. These repetitions and reverberations help to create a ripple effect of circularity, thus given a sense of a completeness in the exhibition and lending the work a very structured, cohesive nature. In another video piece the viewer is invited to contemplate the gentle breeze of the wind, slowly swaying the top of trees. The effect is soothing, almost like the visual equivalent of mindfulness. It is also reminiscent of the opening of Gus van Sant’s Elephant which gives it darker overtones and hints at Pete’s strong pull to the cinematic as an artist.

(C) Tony Culpin

Almost signalling the exit, a neon yellow sign that reads ‘Hope’ is situated next to a black and white image taken in New York. The image stands out as it has a more photojournalistic feel to it than the other more oblique works on display. In the foreground a taxi exhorts us with these maxims ‘EVERY DAY COUNTS’ and ‘RESPECT YOURSELF… LIVE WELL’. In the chaos of the background – smoke, high-rise blocks and harsh sunlight – it could be difficult to live up to these exhortations, but somehow the photograph seems strangely hopeful. This reviewer’s reaction is of slight anxiety – how can I make every day count? – and yet this is the strength of the exhibition as a whole – it allows you to feel, and it gives a validity to these emotions, a dignity.

(C) Pete Regan

So often, art is applauded for its lack of sentimentality, particularly in these irony-ridden times. There is no fake sentimentality here, just unadorned feeling. De Profundis does away with this dreaded fear of feeling. One of the most dehumanising aspects of depression is the feeling of not being able to connect with others. In this exhibition, Pete connects to that which is human in everyone – woe, darkness, pain, joy, exuberance, hopelessness, hope. His photographic pilgrimage and the restorative power of walking and finding these places is truly potent.

Oscar Wilde in De Profundis, a letter written to his lover while incarcerated, said: “To regret one’s own experiences is to arrest one’s own development. To deny one’s own experiences is to put a lie into the lips of one’s own life. It is no less than a denial of the soul.”

Pete Regan bravely confronts his experiences in an affecting and impassioned exhibition, and in doing so makes a stark and powerful contribution in combatting the stigma around mental distress.

Eli Regan
07581 548 454

Vacancy: Digital Marketing Coordinator

Digital Marketing Coordinator

Permanent – Full Time (37 Hours)
Salary: £24,892-£28,127

Location: Pyramid and Parr Hall

If you’re a driven, ambitious and experienced digital marketer who is ready to take ownership for digital marketing results at a unique and exciting organisation – this might just be the job for you.

Culture Warrington is seeking a motivated Digital Marketing Coordinator to grow its marketing team. This is a unique opportunity for you to join a team which, not only, is at the heart of culture in the North West, but is actively investing in updating and upgrading our online marketing presence, brand identity and marketing reach. We have a strong and fun team, and ambitious plans for the next five years, and our Digital Marketing Coordinator will play a key role in the development of our business.

You will have a proactive approach to radically improving the digital marketing for our company, which includes Pyramid Arts Centre, Parr Hall concert venue and Warrington Museum and Art Gallery. You’ll be able to find gaps, spot opportunities and make real improvements to our digital marketing. You’ll be able to think strategically, make long term improvements and balance this with the day-to-day execution of marketing in a fast paced events environment. You’ll be a results driven self-starter with a strong understanding of all things digital including SEO/SEM, social media, targeted email marketing, CRM, website optimisation and online advertising and online reputation management.

In return we’ll give you guidance and support while trusting you to make the decisions to enhance our marketing offer. We’ll help you develop your marketing and career skills and give you the opportunity to work in a vibrant, ever-changing arts and entertainment environment promoting a wealth of varied and exciting products.

If you’re the kind of person who loves to take on a challenge and make a real impact – you’ll love this role.

If you’ve got the skills to help us take our digital marketing to the next level, send your CV and a cover letter explaining why you think you’re the person for this role to cleahy@culturewarrington.org.



Job description here.

Person specification here.


Vacancy: Senior Press & Publicity Advisor

Grade: Scale 8 £28,922 – £32,072

Location: Warrington, Pyramid & Parr Hall (2 Days) Orford Jubilee Hub (3 Days)

Permanent Full Time (37 Hours per week)

Closing date: Thursday 19th March 2015

If you’re a driven, ambitious and experienced press and communications professional who is ready to take ownership for communications and press for two varied and exciting businesses – this could be the job for you.

Sister organisations, LiveWire and Culture Warrington are seeking a Senior Press & Publicity advisor to oversee the strategy and delivery for press, publicity and communications over both businesses.

You will have a proactive approach to radically improving the brand awareness and brand reputation for both companies. You’ll be able to find gaps, spot opportunities, and significantly increase press reach. You’ll be able to think strategically, manage sensitive information, both positive and negative and you’ll be confident working closely with our senior management team and policy team to advise on managing media relations and internal communications. You’ll have a proven track record in generating national and international press coverage.

You’ll be a results driven self-starter with a strong understanding of communications and managing brand reputation. You’ll be able to train, motivate and enthuse others to increase understanding of your field throughout both businesses.

In return you’ll be given guidance, support, and empowerment to make decisions to enhance the reach of both businesses. Support will be provided to develop your marketing and career skills alongside the opportunity to work in a vibrant, ever-changing environment promoting a wealth of varied and exciting products. If you’re the kind of person who loves to take on a challenge and make a real impact – you’ll love this role.

If you’ve got the skills to help us take our press, publicity and communications to the next level, please apply by completing the application form and returning to the following mail box: peoplesolutions@livewirewarrington.org  by Thursday 19th March 2015.



Job description here.

Person specification here.

Application form here.



Just Confirmed: Simon Weston, The Stylistics and Magic of Motown…

…not all in the same show, although what a show that would be!


We’re delighted to get your weekend off to a flying start with the announcement of three amazing shows coming to you in 2105:
Simon Weston – Sunday 6 September, 7.30pm, Pyramid, £14.50 / £13
Voted Britain’s most heroic figure in 2014, the truly inspirational Simon Weston is heading to Pyramid with his ”My Life, My Story’ tour this September.

Tickets and more info here.


The Stylistics – Wednesday 11 November, 7.30pm, Parr Hall, £23
Firm favourites, The Stylistics, return to Parr Hall for another night of spectacular soul.

Tickets and more info here.


Magic of Motown – Saturday 12 December, 8pm, Parr Hall, £23.50 / £21.50
We’re delighted to confirm another firm favourite of Parr Hall patrons is returning for December 2015.

Tickets and more info here.


 Tickets on sale now!


Now Recruiting: Press & Publicity Officer

Love the arts? Passionate about press and PR? If so, we’ve got the perfect job for you!

Culture Warrington is now recruiting for a talented Press and Publicity Officer…


Press and Publicity Officer


Grade Grade 5 £18,376 – £20,849

Location: Pyramid and Parr Hall

Closing date: Thursday, 12th March 2015

Ref: CW/004/14

Culture Warrington is seeking a motivated Press and Publicity Officer to join its marketing team. You will have a keen and proactive approach to securing positive press and PR coverage for our company, which includes Pyramid Arts centre, Parr Hall concert venue and Warrington Museum and Art Gallery. This is a unique opportunity for you to join a team, which is at the heart of culture in the North West. From maintaining and developing new press contacts, creating press releases and setting up photo opportunities, to building partnerships, and copywriting our promotional material, you will be creative, deadline-hungry and keen to explore innovative PR methods to keep Culture Warrington on the map. You will be responsible for leading on public relations for the hundreds of events, cultural engagement activities, education projects and exhibitions that we host at our venues throughout the year, as well as working on high profile campaigns to increase awareness of our events and festivals. Arts and Entertainment experience essential.

We work and play hard. If this sounds like you, visit www.warrington.gov.uk/jobs for further information and details about how to apply for this great opportunity.

Please visit www.warrington.gov.uk/jobs to download an application form, job description and person specification.

Completed applications are to be returned to jobapps@warrington.gov.uk by the closing date of Thursday, 12th March 2015.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Al Murray Gig Tonight (21 Feb) Postponed


Due to unforeseen circumstances, it is with regret that the Al Murray performance tonight (Sat 21 Feb) has been postponed until 14 May.

Al would like to pass on the following message:


“Ladies and gents, I’m afraid I have lost my voice. I caught a cold earlier in the week and it’s got the better of me. I don’t want to do a show where I can’t give 100% and right now I’m on about 30. We will reschedule tonight’s show for 14 May and hope you can make the new date. Thanks for your understanding, Al”.

If you are a ticket holder, a member of the Sales & Information Team will be in touch with you in due course to discuss the options available to you.


Box Office at Pyramid is open as normal until 2pm today – 01925 442345.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Local artist launches mental health exhibition

A brand new exhibition exploring mental health issues is launching at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery in February.

The display is called De Profundis: From the Depths and will explore how the arts can help people who are suffering with depression.

The exhibition will be open between 7 Febuary – 2 May 2015 and will comprise of a range of arts including photography, video art and light installations. It will become a space for people to slow down and reflect.

Pete Regan, who organised the exhibition, is a local artist who has worked in the arts for health field for the past 5 years. The display has stemmed from his passion for photography and filmmaking combined with his personal interest in mental health. Pete also works for Creative Remedies based in Warrington.

Creative Remedies is a programme of arts activities, supported by Warrington Borough Council, that aim to improve the health and wellbeing of Warrington residents over the age of 18 with mental health needs. Activities in the Creative Remedies programme include performing arts, music groups and digital photography. They are all free of charge with equipment and tutors provided.

Included in the exhibition will be practical information on how to access help in the community from information on counselling services, mental health organisations and art based projects.

Pete said: “I can’t wait for the opening of this unique exhibition. I see every day how the arts can improve people’s lives and this exhibition can help provide a distraction from day-to-day problems.

“Thankfully, from the depths of depression I was given a camera, and this piece of equipment has, over the years, transformed my life. Beauty can be found in the unlikeliest of places and the camera has helped me to see beauty and purpose in life again.

“My hope is that this project will raise awareness of mental health issues and go some way to tackling the associated stigma.”

Executive board member for health, wellbeing and adult services, Cllr Pat Wright, said: “We can all experience unhappiness now and again, but people experiencing depression often have intense emotions of anxiety, hopelessness and negativity.

“It’s great to see such a unique take on providing support and raising awareness on such an important issue and I would like to thank Pete for his fantastic efforts.

“As a council, we’re committed to providing support on mental health to our residents and we’re proud to be backing Pete.”

Derek Dick, exhibitions and services manager at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, said: “Pete’s enthusiasm and positivity about how the arts can help those living with depression has been an inspiration to many.

“This exhibition, through the use of photography, film and music, takes you on a sensory journey from the chaos of depression through to acceptance and eventually hope. This is a very positive exhibition that highlights that even through the darkest days there is always hope.”

The exhibition officially launches on Saturday 7 February 2015, 2pm-4pm – all are welcome to attend. The exhibition continues until 2 May 2015.

Every picture tells a story – send us your creative writing!

Can you come up with stories about the people in these portraits for our new exhibition?

In this new display of portraits from the Museum’s collection, the names of the subjects are all hidden or unknown. We have asked creative writing students from Priestley College to think about who the people might be and write a stories and poems. You can see some of their responses in the exhibition itself, on show until 21 March 2015 at the Museum.

But now it’s over to you! Can you come up with a piece of creative writing inspired by any of these pictures? It could be a story, a poem, a series of imagined tweets or even an autopsy report… anything you can think of! You can use the captions in the pictures below as a starting point or completely ignore them, just make sure it’s clear which picture you’re writing about.

Email your stories to museum@culturewarrington.org and we’ll post the results on the website or even in the exhibition itself…

A Festive Night Out Yule Not Regret


Christmas party season is upon us once more, but if it fills you with dread and memories of embarrassing moments you’d rather forget, you should change the way you do things this year!


Why not get the gang together and head down to Pyramid and Parr Hall this December for some slightly more sophisticated fun?  There won’t be dancing on the tables; there won’t be teeny glasses filled with luminous liquids with a ‘zillion percent’ alcohol content, and more to the point, there won’t be any regrets the following day.

The range and quality of entertainment we have for you this next few weeks, is almost obscene.  Whether it’s ice-cool festival favourites ‘Embrace’ on 2nd December, sizzling hot ‘Magic of Motown’ on 6th, or the mesmerising master of the acoustic guitar ‘Peter Price’ on 5th December, you are sure to get top points from your friends for showing them a new way to party.

If it’s pure laughs you’re after, get the mini-bus to drop you and your friends at the Comedy Store on 6th December.  We have the brightest new talents coming through on our stage and they’re always a touch cheeky and up for a bit of audience participation.  And there are bars at both venues, but strictly no trendy wine-bar prices – what’s not to love?

And here’s one last suggestion for you.  If your party can’t make up their minds between comedy and music, give them both, with The Houghton Weavers on 12 December.  What a stroke of festive genius; their very motto is “Keep Folk Smiling”, and they do just that, with everything from jokes and antidotes, to raucous folk songs and beautiful ballads.  There’s something in there for everybody.

Go on, get the gang together and head down to Pyramid and Parr Hall and have a Christmas night out you’ll remember for all the right reasons.


 Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information


Tuesday 2 Dec 2014, 7:30pm


Parr Hall

 Peter Price

Friday 5 Dec 2014, 7:30pm



 Magic of Motown

Saturday 6 Dec 2014, 8:00pm


Parr Hall

 Comedy Store

Saturday 6 Dec 2014, 8:00pm



 Houghton Weavers

Friday 12 Dec 2014, 7:30pm



Tickets and Information: www.pyramidparrhall.com  01925 442345



Having difficulty completing your online booking?

If you are encountering any problems when trying to purchase tickets please call Box Office on 01925 442345, who will complete your transaction over the phone.

Alternatively, email us at info@culturewarrington.org with a contact telephone number and we’ll call you back.

Apologies for any inconvenience caused.

The Full-On Fox Tour

Boom Boom – Basil Brush Tour to Hit Warrington

 Sunday 26 April 2015, 11am and 2:30pm, £12 / £10 / £38 Family, Parr Hall, Warrington.

Tickets and information 01925 442345.  www.pyramidparrhall.com

There’s nothing like a bit of cheeky banter and the master of cheeky banter, Basil Brush, is coming to Warrington’s Parr Hall next April with his very own brand of charm and irreverence.

Basil Brush is a star with an outstanding ability to entertain and make people of all ages laugh out loud.  He’s naughty, quick-witted, scheming and foxy, we know that much, but he’s also charming and affectionate.

Basil has entertained children and grown-ups alike for over 50 years and with staying-power like that it’s only right and proper that we should pay homage to him in his new ‘Full On Fox Tour 2015’.  The BBC’s Bafta-nominated Basil Brush Show has been seen by millions of viewers all over the globe, from its inception in 1968 right through to today, and was voted best TV comedy show.

Now, Britain’s most loveable fox is back on the road and he fetches his TV chum Mr Stephen (aka Chris Pizzey) along for the ride.  Together they will take you on a hilarious roller-coaster of laughs, storytelling and song in a brand new ‘live’ stage show packed with fun and excitement.

Poor Mr Stephen can hardly get a word in for being continually interrupted by naughty uncontrollable Basil!!  This is an action-packed show for the whole family….some things you just never grow out of.  Boom Boom!!!

 Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information

The Full On Fox Tour

Sunday 26 April 2015, 11am and 2:30pm.  Tickets: £12/ £10 / £38 Family

Tickets and Information: www.pyramidparrhall.com  01925 442345



Up Close and Personal With The Legendary Joan Armatrading

Friday 10 October, 7:30pm, £27.50, Parr Hall, Warrington.

Tickets and information 01925 442345.  www.pyramidparrhall.com

 In what could be her last ever major tour, Joan Armatrading brings her unique solo show to Parr Hall, Warrington, promising fans an interactive experience that will stay with them for ever.

 Over her 42 years of touring, Joan has never before done a solo world tour.  But as this could be her last major tour, she has decided that now is the perfect time.  Three times Grammy-nominated, Brit Award nominee and Ivor Novella winner, Joan is widely acknowledged as one of the world’s leading singer, songwriter and guitarists.

The performance will include songs that span her entire career to date, including Love and Affection, Willow, Drop the Pilot and Me, Myself and I.  Joan says “These concerts will be me, solo on stage playing the guitar, piano and singing….a special lively interactive one to one experience; a unique memory for both myself and the audience” .

Tom Stade …Intelligent Comedy

Nothing Staid About Tom Stade

Nothing Staid about Stade

Wednesday 1 October, 8:00pm, £16 / £14, Pyramid, Warrington.
Tickets and information 01925 442345. www.pyramidparrhall.com

Master of Comedy, Tom Stade is taking the spotlight at Pyramid, Warrington this October, with his unique take on life, its choices and decisions.

Following his ever-popular TV appearances on BBC One’s Live at The Apollo and Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, as well as Channel 4’s Comedy Gala, Tom also sold out at the Melbourne and Edinburgh Comedy Festivals.

Now he brings his exuberant and spellbinding talent to Warrington, to ponder the timeless questions and continue his assault on the global comedy scene. This is incisive comedy with a good sprinkling of Stade’s expertly-crafted mayhem. A real Rock ‘n’ Roll comedian.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Tom Stade
Pyramid, Warrington
Wednesday 1 October, 8:00pm. Tickets: £16/ £14
Tickets and Information: www.pyramidparrhall.com 01925 442345

For a Barrel of Laughs…

It’s Got To Be The Comedy Store

Saturday 1 November, 8:00pm, £14, Pyramid, Warrington.
Tickets and information 01925 442345. www.pyramidparrhall.com

If you’re a comedy thrill-seeker and love the unique feel of live stand-up, make sure you get down to Pyramid in Warrington’s Cultural Quarter this October, for plenty of laughs from some of the most popular comedians in the country.

That’s right….Comedy Store is back, bigger and better than ever, with performances that will have you shaking in your seats with belly-laughs galore!

The Comedy Store comedians can be a cheeky crowd and enjoy a bit of good-humoured banter with the audience, so if you’re up for a laugh make sure you call up early to bag front row seats.

The comedy season is in full swing and Comedy Store will run the first Saturday of each month from now through to December. These shows sell out, so snap up your tickets now and have your fun quota guaranteed from now until Christmas!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Comedy Store
Saturday 1 November, 8:00pm. Tickets: £14
Tickets and Information: www.pyramidparrhall.com 01925 442345

The Elvis Years

There’s a Guy down there at Parr Hall ….Swears He’s Elvis!

Sunday 12 October, 7.30pm, £19.50/ £18, Parr Hall, Warrington
Tickets and information: 01925 442345

You ready to rock ’n’ roll?
Donna Presley hailed him as “The best Elvis since Elvis!” and he’s here at Parr Hall, Warrington this October with the knockout musical show ‘The Elvis Years’.
Led by legendary producer, musical director and Ivor Novello award-winner David Mackay, this really is as close as you can get to The King. The UK’s Number One Elvis show is an outstanding concert production of the West End musical Jailhouse Rock featuring original star Mario Kombou and his incredible band.
‘Images of the King’ World Champion Mario delivers a tour de force performance in this spectacular show packed with over 50 of Elvis’s greatest hits, from the early days of Sun Studios and That’s Alright Mama, through the Hollywood years of GI Blues and It’s Now or Never, the ‘68 TV special with All Shook Up, culminating in the legendary Las Vegas concert, with In The Ghetto, Suspicious Minds and American Trilogy.


Ready to Rock??

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
The Elvis Years
Parr Hall, Warrington
Sunday 12 October, 7.30pm
Tickets: £19.50 / £18
01925 442345

Starsailor Coming Home

Starsailor Coming ‘Home’ to Play Parr Hall

Sailing back to Warrington…..

Thursday 18 December, 7:00pm, £17.50, Parr Hall.
Tickets available 19th September. Tel: 01925 442345. www.pyramidparrhall.com

There’ll be Fever in Parr Hall, Warrington this December as top Indie band Starsailor return to their home ground with a string of hits for the Good Souls of the North. Taken from their hit albums ‘Love is Here’, ‘Silence is Easy’, ‘On the Outside’ and ‘All the Plans’, there will be epic songs about loves lost and lessons learned.

Back from Los Angeles and raring to go; “We’re back and playing better than ever”, says drummer Ben Byrne. Fresh from festival season, and supporting ‘James’ on tour, the boys are making time for the home-fans in the North, where the band was formed.

With accolades to their name as impressive as ‘Britain’s Best New Band’ and ‘Brightest New Hope’ award, they have a solid recording pedigree and in 2009 they were named Hard Rock’s ‘Philanthropic Artist of the Year’.

Starsailor have enjoyed more than their fair share of prestigious gigs, supporting the likes of The Rolling Stones, The Police, The Killers and U2, and have sold over 3 million albums worldwide. 2014 is the year they have chosen to hit the music scene hard once again, and we are ecstatic to welcome them to Parr Hall. It’s like Christmas has come early this year!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information

Thursday 18 December, 7:00pm. Tickets: £17.50
Tickets and Information: www.pyramidparrhall.com 01925 442345

Explore Warrington’s World War I story

Explore Warrington’s World War I story at Warrington Library and Warrington Museum in this free event on 1 November 2014.

Need some help finding out about your family’s World War I history?

  • Then drop into the Local Studies library (on the ground floor) between 10am and 1pm for some expert advice.

Could you add to the official record of Warrington at War? Have you uncovered the stories of those who worked in wartime industries, in the hospitals or other hidden roles?

  • Then drop into Gallery 4 on the first floor of the Museum between 12noon and 3pm
  • You can also bring photography or documents for identification, but please do not bring weapons, grenades or any other kids of arms kept as family souvenirs!
  • Staff will arrange to copy your photographs or artefacts to add your information to Warrington’s Story and Cheshire’s Great War stories, a project commemorating the centenary of the Great War.
  • You can also discover some of the stories behind the Museum’s new World War I exhibition ‘It’ll All Be Over By Christmas’, including the secret histories of the Bewsey Local History Group uncovered from the Pearson and Knowles war memorial

Warrington Business Breakfast – Thursday 30 October

The Changing Face of Warrington

Warrington businesses are invited to come along to a Business Breakfast at Pyramid on Thursday 30 October (8:30am – 10:30am), to find out more about The Changing Face of Warrington.

Local Businesses are invited to the networking event, which is led by Councillor Mike Hannon, Deputy Leader of Warrington Borough Council, and will feature various guest speakers.

Participants will hear about the physical changes taking place in the town centre as well as planned events and programmes of activity for the coming year.  We will update you regarding:

–          2013 How did we do?

–          Warrington Town Centre; What’s next?

–          People, place, promise: our legacy

So come along, enjoy breakfast on us, and take the opportunity to network with fellow Warrington business people.  Find out how the plans for the future of Warrington town centre will impact on your business, and how the Face of Warrington be changing for the better.

The Business Breakfast is FREE but has a limited capacity, so click here to reserve your place.

Warrington-Voices Sound Installation: Send us your voice memos

Warrington-Voices is a site-specific Sound Installation by Esther Ainsworth e_s_t, for Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival 2014.

Field recordings, collected in the town and surrounding area in the lead up to the festival, culminate in a sound composition which responds to the unique environment of Warrington, exploring the spirit of place and capturing the rhythms of the way the town moves and lives.

The project seeks participation from the local community in the creation of the work by contributing sound recordings of their locations and experiences of Warrington via voice memo on mobile phone or by emailing sound clips.

Recordings can be sent to Esther using the email or mobile phone number below:

Text Voice Memos: +44 7775 722888
Email Sound Clips: Textures.fm@gmail.com

The recordings contributed by the public prior to the installation will be added and layered into the final work.

The idea explores the capability of sound to deepen and strengthen connections within communities, considering the physical and virtual networks between the people and places of Warrington.

The work will be installed beneath the entrance outside Parr Hall throughout the festival from the 3 October – 1 November 2014. During the festival, the public will still be able to continue to submit sound recordings, which will then be used as part of a final performance at the close of the festival.

More information about this project can be found at:

estherainsworth.com/warrington-voices.html (coming soon)

Esther Ainsworth is a Sound Artist trained in Fine Art and Digital Media. Her work investigates soundscapes in specific environments, usually taking the form of installation and performance.


Exhibition inspired by Warrington Museum on show as part of the Liverpool Independents Biennial

An exhibition of curious artworks and objects opens at The Albert Dock, Liverpool on 11 September 2014. Markmakers artist collective bring their show ‘Cabinets of Curiosity’ to the city as part of the Liverpool Independents Biennial following its successful premiere at Warrington Museum & Art Gallery earlier in 2014.

Markmakers art collective are based in Halton and in 2013 were invited to explore the ethnography collection of intriguing objects at Warrington Museum. Artists are typically curious about the world around them so sources of inspiration from fake mermaids to willow patterned plates, a child mummy to gas masks have resulted in an eclectic collection of new sculptures, drawings, prints and paintings.

‘Cabinets of Curiosity’ takes place at the unique cultural setting of the Albert Dock’s Colonnades during The Liverpool Independents Biennial which runs alongside the 8th Liverpool Biennial exhibition ‘A Needle Walks in to a Haystack’, and provides the opportunity for Markmakers to showcase their work to the international audience the Biennial attracts. Running for just under 2 weeks, this is a great opportunity to wonder at both the traditional historic objects in our museum collections and at how the artists evoked new meaning in the creation of their works.

This method of responding to places and objects is typical for Markmakers, artist Jacqui Chapman explained. “When the Markmakers group was invited to explore the ethnography collection at Warrington Museum, with a view to creating new work in response to the objects, a sense of anticipation and excitement was palpable. Collections within museums have long fascinated artists, particularly the early format of Wunderkammers in Renaissance Europe, which is where our exhibition title comes from.”

The exhibition takes place just past Tate Liverpool at the Albert Dock and will be open from 11-23 September, Tuesday-Sunday 11am-4pm where you’ll be able to satisfy your own curiosity by talking to the artists who created this intriguing exhibition.

It’s Got To Be The Comedy Store

Saturday 4 October, 8:00pm, £14, Pyramid, Warrington.

Tickets and information 01925 442345.  www.pyramidparrhall.com

 If you’re a comedy thrill-seeker and love the unique feel of live stand-up, make sure you get down to Pyramid in Warrington’s Cultural Quarter this October, for plenty of laughs from some of the most popular comedians in the country.

 That’s right….Comedy Store is back, bigger and better than ever, with performances that will have you shaking in your seats with belly-laughs galore!

The Comedy Store comedians can be a cheeky crowd and enjoy a bit of good-humoured banter with the audience, so if you’re up for a laugh make sure you call up early to bag front row seats.

The comedy season is in full swing and Comedy Store will run the first Saturday of each month from now through to December.  These shows sell out, so snap up your tickets now and have your fun quota guaranteed from now until Christmas!


Pyramid Exhibitions Inspired By Mental Health and Emotions

Until Saturday 27 September, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.
Pyramid, Palmyra Square, Warrington. WA1 1BL. Information 01925 442345.


Two thought-provoking exhibitions inspired by mental health issues and human emotion are on display at Pyramid, in Warrington, throughout September


A Collage of Recovery is a moving collection of paintings and poetry created by local people living with mental health issues, illustrates and recounts their own very personal journeys through this challenging illness.  The representations are sometimes shocking, sometimes emotional, but always frank and from the heart.


The Moss exhibition is a stunning collection of pictures, handcrafted using traditional darkroom methods, from Contemporary Arts Festival 2014 judge John Volynchook.  With an absence of people in his photos, and few references to the modern day, the images convey a poetic longing for something that has passed.


The exhibitions run at Pyramid until Saturday 27 September, Monday to Friday 9am-5pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.


Culture Warrington warns of email scam

Culture Warrington is warning people to be on their guard after a credit card scam email was received from an email address claiming to be associated with the organisation.


The email, which was sent from item@Warringtonfestivals.org is now being investigated by the Police to ascertain the origin.

The perpetrators attempted to scam people using the similarity between this email address and a genuine event run annually by Culture Warrington, called Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival (www.warringtonartsfestival.co.uk).

Customers should be aware that Culture Warrington would never ask them to provide financial or other personal information, by email.  Bookings are made by contacting the Box Office on 01925 442345 or through the website on www.culturewarrington.org

Anybody affected by this scam should contact the police and Culture Warrington.

Recycling Comes to a Catwalk Near You!

So, here it is. Today it’s the wrapper from your double-choc-chip muffin….tomorrow it’s a bejewelled belt buckle or one half of a pair of earrings, being modelled at a catwalk show in a hot venue!

Sounds a bit unlikely, right?

Well, it’s not as strange as it sounds, because that’s exactly where your recycled items have turned up this week. The children taking part in the show designed and created the fun outfits as part of their Culture Club art class with tutor Mandy Turner, who said “I am really proud of the children – they have such fabulous imaginations and were inspired by the theme of ‘re-use and recycle, using materials picked up mainly from Freecycle and Freegle”

On the catwalk were an array of colourful pieces, ranging from skirts and dresses, to shoes, handbags, jewellery and even face-masks. Tasked with thinking differently about the kind of materials we usually discard, the children chopped, painted, sewed, stapled and glued them into a whole new lease of life.

This innovative and unusual project demonstrates what can be achieved when art is used to illustrate real-life, down to earth concepts like recycling.

Culture Club, a joint venture between Culture Warrington and The Wolves Foundation, delivers art classes plus lots of other fun and inventive activities for children during the school holidays.

Culture Warrington’s James Goodison said ”Culture Club is more than a holiday club; it’s really well thought out to stimulate imagination and creative talent in young people. And if we can use this forum to encourage children to think creatively around the re-use and recycling of everyday items, then it’s going to benefit the whole household”.

Also involved is Warrington Borough Council’s Education & Promotion Officer, Phil Chadwick. He regularly visits schools to share the re-use and recycle message and he thinks that parents might just be missing a trick here. “Children are always receptive to the idea of re-using unwanted bits and bobs”, he says. “There’s a huge amount of fun to be had with recycled materials and the children love to produce a personal and unique gift for somebody they love. A drinks carton can become a purse, a vinyl record becomes a handbag, and odd bits of wool are knitted into a belt. Mums and dads can save money and feed their children’s imaginations at the same time. It’s fun for free and it encourages good re-use habits in the family”.

Although Warrington residents have a great recycling record, there has recently been an increase in the amount of textiles being placed into blue bins. They can’t be recycled in this way, so the council is helping residents by placing information stickers on blue bins to remind householders what can be put in them.

Cllr David Keane, Executive board member for environment and public protection said “People are recycling, want to recycle, and we want to encourage them to do so. It’s important they have the information to do so and the stickers will remind people of what can go into the blue bin. Look out for the stickers in September and keep up the good work”.

That’s not to say that unloved clothing and fabrics have to just go to waste, or end up in landfill. You could donate them to charity, use the Community Recycling Centres and bring sites, give them away on Freecycle or Freegle or transform them into something else like the children at Culture Club have done. Either way, you will be helping to reduce landfill and support recycling in Warrington.

Asked after the performance finale ‘what’s the coolest thing about recycling?’, the children answered “it could save the world”, “you can make great presents for your family”, and “it makes our town Not Dirty!”.

What more is there to say?



Christian Comes To Warrington With ‘Naked Confessions’


From the streets of inner city Manchester to the Boulevards of Beverly Hills, via The ‘Madchester’ Music Scene and a house with an outside toilet. Terry Christian’s debut stand up show, coming to Warrington’s Pyramid this October, takes a snap shot of life overlooked by an all seeing and often unforgiving God.

This show promises to be an hilarious romp through the guilt ridden and occasionally darker realms of life. He brings all the maverick qualities that made him so popular on The Word to the fore in an honest, funny and sometimes profound indictment of religion and the beauty of always, as a last resort , being able to blame God for everything. Sex, violence, religion, class prejudice, it’s all contained in this terrific and funny show.

In the second part of this frankly fascinating show Terry will open himself up to the audience for a no holds barred Question and Answer session, which often results in hilarious stories about Hollywood stars like Tom Hanks, Arnold Schwarzenegger and the late great James Brown.

This show has been highly acclaimed by pundits and the public alike, and tickets are being snapped up. So for an insight into the weird and wonderful workings of Christian’s mind, come along to Pyramid, Warrington’s premier entertainment venue. Bring along your questions – wacky, thought-provoking or just plain strange, and challenge Christian to answer them.



Comedy Store – Autumn Dates Are In!


Stand Up For Comedy on Saturday Nights

If you enjoy comedy and you crave that unique feel you can only get from a live show, then make sure you get down to Pyramid in The Cultural Quarter this Autumn, for plenty of laughs from some of the most popular comedians in the country.

Starting in September, Pyramid is offering monthly Comedy Store performances which will have you shaking in your seats with belly-laughs galore! Recognised as a premier entertainment venue, Warrington’s Pyramid is attracting some of the very best stand-up performers around.

The Comedy Store comedians can be a cheeky crowd and they often enjoy a bit of good-humoured banter with the audience, so if you’re up for a laugh make sure you bag the front row.

The first show is in September and it sells out fast! So get your tickets now and have your fun quota guaranteed from now until Christmas!




Magical Musicals Return to Warrington

Take the breath-taking journey through the magical world of musicals as Back to Broadway, now in its third year, tours to Warrington’s Parr Hall.

This incredible evening features the best-loved songs from the world’s greatest musicals including Phantom of the Opera, Chicago, Les Misérables, West Side Story, Wicked, Copacabana and many more.

Back to Broadway are rightfully proud of their high production values as they cast talented regulars from West End shows to appear in their performances. Spectacular performances, dazzling costumes and original choreography come together to make Back to Broadway a must for anyone intoxicated by musical theatre.



WECA Mela Goes From Strength to Strength

Culture Warrington staff worked exceptionally hard alongside WECA in the planning and execution of the MELA again this year.  In addition we had around a dozen staff working there on the day, some on site from 5am, before the doors opened!

We estimated that somewhere close to 1400 members of the public attended the event, which was pretty mind-blowing, given the gloomy weather forecasts.  And it was fantastic to see that even when the weather tried it’s very best to wash-out the event, most visitors stood firm and refused to give up on it.

This year there was a wide mix of styles, from 7yr old children taking the stage with a dance performance, to colourful animated Bollywood displays.  Which demonstrated, once again the wide range of cultures that we are lucky enough to have celebrating the Diversity of the town.

Culture Warrington’s Museum & Art Gallery’s stall proved to be one of the most popular attractions of the day, with a plethora of exciting activities to keep the children amused (and the parents delighted!)

    “This is a wonderful event for Warrington’s communities, and one which Culture Warrington and Weca are particularly proud of.  The MELA grows in strength from year to year and the professionalism of the teams involved is quite remarkable”  Gemma Johnson, Cultural Director of Culture Warrington said.

Culture Warrington staff worked exceptionally hard alongside WECA in the planning and execution of the MELA again this year. In addition we had around a dozen staff working there on the day, some on site from 5am, before the doors opened!

We estimated that somewhere close to 1400 members of the public attended the event, which was pretty mind-blowing, given the gloomy weather forecasts. And it was fantastic to see that even when the weather tried it’s very best to wash-out the event, most visitors stood firm and refused to give up on it.

This year there was a wide mix of styles, from 7yr old children taking the stage with a dance performance, to colourful animated Bollywood displays. Which demonstrated, once again the wide range of cultures that we are lucky enough to have celebrating the Diversity of the town.

Culture Warrington’s Museum & Art Gallery’s stall proved to be one of the most popular attractions of the day, with a plethora of exciting activities to keep the children amused (and the parents delighted!)

“This is a wonderful event for Warrington’s communities, and one which Culture Warrington and Weca are particularly proud of. The MELA grows in strength from year to year and the professionalism of the teams involved is quite remarkable” Gemma Johnson, Cultural Director of Culture Warrington said.



Warrington Dancers to Perform at Wembley

Dancers from across the country, including Warrington, have been selected to perform at Wembley Stadium this summer for the Challenge Cup Final 2014.

Following the success of last year’s Window on Warrington (WoW) project, Culture Warrington in partnership with Wolves Foundation have received Arts Council Funding to develop this new performance project.


Phoenix Dance Theatre, which is said to be one of Britain’s leading contemporary dance companies, will be joining the selected participants over an intense week to create material for the performance.


The nationally and internationally renowned dance company from Yorkshire will work with the participants at the Pyramid, Warrington on the 11th – 15th August before their performance with other dancers selected from other parts of the UK.


Last year saw over 500 dancers of different abilities from ages 3 – 87 perform to an international crowd of 4,000 in Warrington Town Centre celebrating hosting Samoa for last year’s Rugby League World Cup.

The dancers will perform in front of 80,000 rugby fans on the 23rd August 2014 at Wembley Stadium.




Jason Manford extends sell-out tour to include Warrington’s Parr Hall

Jason Manford’s hugely successful ‘First World Problems’ tour has proved so popular he’s added extra dates this Autumn, including a weekend performance at top Warrington venue, Parr Hall.

Having already performed over 220 shows around the UK, Jason is delighted with the incredible reaction to the tour, and is now performing extra dates right through to December.  Well known for his stand up sets on ‘Live at the Apollo’ and ‘Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow (both BBC One), Jason is popular for his unique take on everything from television to sport, from the gaffes to the feuds and the trends of the year.

On stage Jason encourages audience participation by inviting them to share their ‘First World Problems’ which leads to hilarious exchanges. His warm humour and natural rapport demonstrates his likeability and he’s hugely excited to be playing to a Warrington audience.

 Jason said: “I am really enjoying this show, the audiences are absolutely fantastic and I love nothing more than making them laugh. They have been such a great support and I can’t wait to see more of them this autumn.”

Tickets are on sale from Tuesday 5th August and can be purchased direct from Parr Hall box office on 01925 442345 or visit www.pyramidparrhall.com

Culture Warrington AGM – September 2014

Maureen Banner, Chair of the Culture Warrington Board, warmly invites you to Culture Warrington’s Annual General Meeting (AGM).
With live performances and refreshments, the evening is an opportunity to see the impact that Culture Warrington has had on the town and the people of Warrington in the past twelve months, and the exciting plans in place for the forthcoming year.
Following the formal business of the evening, there will be an opportunity to meet with our friendly team of trustees, staff and volunteers. Come along and help influence the future of Culture Warrington and build a long-lasting partnership.
The event will take place in the Exhibition Hall at Pyramid (arrival from 6.00pm for a 6.30pm start).
To assist us with refreshments, we ask that you register to attend by emailing info@culturewarrington.org with ‘RSVP AGM’ in the title or call 01925 442884 by Friday 22 August.

Mrs Rylands’ Ball, February 1909

Philip Jeffs continues his blog exploring the Glazebrook-Rylands family archives…

After the dangers of smoking and the threat of cholera, I thought you might like a slightly lighter hearted blog entry. So today I have chosen the dance card and menu from a ball held by Mary Isabel Rylands of Highfields, Bidston, Birkenhead.

Mary Isabel was the wife of John Paul Rylands, the man whose memories of his school days we looked at earlier in the blog. John Paul was by this time a reasonably wealthy man, he had his share in Rylands Brothers wire works, which had been become a large concern under the patronage of his father and uncle (the brothers in question), and was a Barrister at Law in his own right.

Part of life for the Rylands family now was keeping up appearances. John Paul had followed the example of his father and uncle and built himself a large, state of the art house. He named it Highfields after the house his father had built at Thelwall. The family took part in a constant circuit of visits, dances, parties, and lunches.


The event shown here is a ball, held by Mary Isabel at St. Anne’s Rooms, on 9th February, 1909. We have two dance cards from this ball, but sadly neither have been filled in, so either we have the dance cards of two wall flowers, or these items were kept as left over copies to remember the day by. The date of the dance doesn’t match up with any major events in the life of the Rylands family, but with the diaries of John Paul showing that the family were hosting or attending events at least a couple of times every week, there perhaps needs to be no reason beyond enjoyment.

What amused me most with this dance card was the way it captured a moment, at the beginning of the 20th Century, when the traditional, staid music popular in the 19th Century was giving way to the precursors of popular music. Note the two step dances, the “Rooster Strut” and the “Teddy Bear’s Picnic”. It’s hard to imagine the older generations of the Rylands family, with their rigid beliefs in abstinence from luxury, self-sacrifice to please God, and self-control at all times, dancing the “Rooster Strut”. John Paul’s grandmother Martha, whose diary entry from during the great cholera outbreak was an earlier post, had recorded in her diaries how it was disgusting and sinful to be glad that you were alive and how dying painfully from cholera was a blessing as it brought you to God quicker and let you appreciate the Sacrifice of Jesus more in the meantime. So perhaps the Teddy Bear’s Picnic was not for her.


The next little snippet we have relating to this ball is a menu card. Decorated in the same pattern as the dance card, this menu lists the five course meal that was held as part of the event. I have to say that the menu sounds quite impressive and most of the items could easily be found on a posh menu today. With six options for the main course and seven options for dessert, I think everyone could have found something to eat. But still, with twenty items on the menu, an extra one has been added, grilled bones. Grilled bones are an option I could do without, I confess, but I am sure that one of you readers out there must like scooping the marrow out of bones.

REVIEW: Scouting For Girls @ Warrington Music Fesitval

With appearances in summer music festivals up and down the country before they head back to the studio to record their next album, it was finally Warrington’s turn to get the chart-topping Scouting for Girls to grace the stage for the final performance of this year’s Warrington Music Festival.

From playing Glastonbury and headlining Wembley Arena to playing alongside Olly Murs and Little Mix, the band are known for their fun, infectious dance tunes about love, girls and wanting to be James Bond.

The indie rock band from London caused a frenzy of high energy dancing and full pelt singing from the good strong crowd at The Old Market Place in Golden Square.

Supported by the incredibly talented rocker Kim Jennett and her band along with pop rock band Conquer Rio, they are both homegrown talents that we need to watch out for.

Once they departed the stage, the atmosphere was electric in anticipation for Scouting for Girls to make an appearance; the screams from the crowd were almost deafening when frontman Roy Stride, guitarists Greg Churchouse and Jamie O’Gorman and drummer Pete Ellard ran on in front of the Warringtonian crowd.

Immediately, the band acknowledged the crowd as the fifth member of the band before launching into their set of well-known chart toppers including Heartbeat, Famous and a cover of Rudimental’s hit Waiting All Night.

A high energy dance party is the only way that can describe the crowd throughout their show, with everyone singing along to their songs, young and old.

There is no doubt that the lyrics for Scouting for Girls could be heard all across Warrington especially when the encore track that everyone had been waiting for, She’s So Lovely, started playing.

To say the crowd went mad is an understatement; from the start and throughout, the crowd was thoroughly entertained and wanting more.

Bright pop songs partnered with energetic dance tracks with a sprinkle of infectious melodies topped off with beautiful summer weather, what more could you want from the perfect ending of the biggest and best Warrington Music Festival yet.

Scouting for Girls had the audience in the palm of their hands from start to finish and really showed the audience why they’ve gained major success within the music industry.

Win four tickets to Warrington Music Festival’s headline event featuring Scouting For Girls and a round of drinks up to the value of £20!

Have a night out on us!

Win a night out for you and your mates at Warrington Music Festival 2014!

Scouting for Girls are the headline act of Warrington Music Festival 2014 on Sunday 20 July (doors open at 7pm).

One lucky winner chosen at random will receive four tickets and a round of drinks up to the value of £20 for their party, making the whole value of this competition £100!

For your chance to win, all you need to do is send us an email with the subject title ‘Get me to the music festival!’. In the body of the email, make sure you tell us your name, address and contact number!

Email us at: info@culturewarrington.org

The entry deadline for this competition is 5pm, Wednesday 9 July and the winner will be announced the following day at 12noon. Good luck!

If you’re not lucky enough to be our winner, don’t worry – you can still buy tickets here.

Click here to view the full weekend line-up for this year’s festival.



Announcement!! SOLD OUT! John Bishop to take to the stage at Parr Hall this September!

One of the UK’s finest comedians John Bishop hits Warrington’s Parr Hall on Friday 12 September this year! Tickets are priced at £20 and go on sale at 10am on Friday 6 June.

Before he sets off on his Supersonic Tour for 2014, Bishop has announced a small number of ‘one off’ shows around the country for a pre tour warm up. No stranger to Parr Hall, Bishop last visited this historic venue five years ago and since then has gone from strength to strength to become a national TV personality.

Born in Liverpool, Bishop now lives in Cheshire with his wife and three sons. Prior to his career as a comedian, he worked as a Medical Representative, before leaving to pursue stand-up comedy. He performed for the first time in Manchester in 2000, and subsequently made it to the final in all major new act competitions the following year.

Bishop went on to win awards around the North West and made many TV appearances, including Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow. He also won the Best Male Comedy Breakthrough Artist award at the 2010 British Comedy Awards and has released all recordings of his tours on DVD.

During his successful career, Bishop has also been known for his work in Charity, raising £3.4m for Sport Relief in 2012. Most recently in May 2014, he donated £96k to the Hillsborough Family Support Group after being moved by personal statements delivered by the victim’s families at their inquests.

Expect stories from Bishop’s life experiences; fatherhood, cycling around the world, football and working as a nightclub doorman.  This is sure to be a quick sell out so don’t delay and get your tickets ASAP!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
John Bishop
Parr Hall
Friday 12 September, 8pm
Tickets: £20
01925 442345

Museum Dance Off – help us reach the quarter finals!

Culture Warrington have created an awesome film that has been selected to take part in what is, as far as we know, the world’s first Museum Dance Off competition!

Despite a glaringly obvious lack of dancing ability, we managed to narrowly beat the Fred Jones Jr. Museum in the first round, gaining 55% of the vote.

Now we need your help to reach the quarter finals! In the second round we’ve been pitted against the Arab-American National Museum in Michigan USA.

In order to win, we need your help! Please vote for our film on Sunday 8 June from 12pm GMT. Voting is only open for one day so your mouse clicked support would be much appreciated.

If you haven’t seen the film, check it out below:

*UPDATE* It was a close run thing, but unfortunately the Arab-American Museum pipped us to the post, with 51% of the votes. Congratulations to the Arab-American Museum and thanks to everyone who voted for us!



Rich Hall returns to Warrington

Rich Hall is the star of the critically acclaimed BBC 4 documentaries Rich Hall’s Continental Drifters, Rich Hall’s The Dirty South, How The West Was Lost plus Channel 4’s topical late night show Stand Up For The Week and he performs his latest show for one night only at Parr Hall on Thursday 29 May.

Rich Hall’s critically acclaimed grouchy, deadpan style has established him as a master of absurdist irony and the king of rapid-fire wit. The award-winning Montana native renowned for his expertly crafted tirades and quick fire banter with audiences and delightful musical sequences saddles up and hitches his wagon to tour the British Isles once again.

This is a comedian who’s plain spoken growling indignation and acerbic observations have an unerring talent for hitting his targets with precision every time,  leaving his audience hanging on every word winning him fans all over the globe.  Perrier (Edinburgh Comedy Festival) Award and Barry (Melbourne International Comedy Festival) Award winner Hall has been described as a transatlantic messenger lampooning each country he visits with his common sense, and he is no less harsh to his homeland.

Rich has also become well known for his television and radio work. Notable UK appearances include regular appearances on Stand Up For The Week (Channel 4), QI (BBC1/2), Live At The Apollo (BBC1), Channel 4’s Comedy Gala Live At The O2, Have I Got News For You (BBC1), Rich Hall’s Cattle Drive (BBC4), Rich Hall’s Gone Fishing (BBC4), Otis Lee Crenshaw – London Not Tennessee (BBC2) and Never Mind The Buzzcocks (BBC2).

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Rich Hall
Parr Hall
Thursday 29 May, 8pm
Tickets: £16
01925 442345

PEACE Play Parr Hall

As anyone one wise enough to have caught a show throughout the In Love campaign will attest – on the road is where PEACE thrive.

This footage below, expertly shot by Jonnie Craig at the Birmingham show in December, goes someway to capturing the essence of seeing Peace live and the youthful abandon with which their ever-growing crowds of fans get involved.

So here we are – only one year since the debut album and they’re already forging ahead with album #2; something fans can keep abreast of here: www.peacelandworld.com.

In celebration – and in true Peace fashion – they’re heading back out on tour taking in towns and cities they couldn’t visit in December.  They open this run of shows headlining Dot to Dot – a festival they also played in 2012 at the other end of the bill. Similarly, this summer they’ll grace the main stage at Reading & Leeds, where last year they packed out the NME tent with an early afternoon slot.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Parr Hall
Wed 28 May 2014, 7pm doors
Tickets: £13.50
01925 442345

Sooty is headed to Warrington

Sooty and the gang are coming to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Sunday 25 May for two special shows to celebrate Sooty’s birthday.

Filled with fun and laughs for the whole family to enjoy, Sooty,Sweep and Soo are back! The first show is at 11am, followed by a show at 2.30pm.

It’s Sooty’s birthday and you’re all invited to join him and the gang to celebrate it in style with the help of Sooty’s TV partner Richard Cadell, who has a really big job on his hands to try and keep the gang under control.

There will be special party guests including legendry favourites Butch
The Bulldog and Ramsbottom The Snake who will be helping out with all the fun of the show and party games that the audience can take part in.

Along with music, magic and laughter there is the chance to meet the birthday boy himself and his best friend Richard after the show.

Sooty fans old and new will not be disappointed with this new show! With family tickets available from £38 and single tickets at £12 you’d be crazy to miss out!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
The Sooty Show 2014
Parr Hall
Sunday 25 May, 11am & 2.30pm
Tickets: £12 / £38 family
01925 442345

Limited tickets left for Billy Ocean

The British King of Soul, Billy Ocean, is back at Parr Hall on Friday 23 May and tickets are selling fast. With support from Denise Pearson from Five Star, this is a show not to be missed!

Billy’s set to grace the Parr Hall stage once again with a new show for fans that may have missed out on his sold out 2013 performance. Don’t miss your chance to hear all the hits including When the Going Gets Tough and Caribbean Queen.

Billy, who is known all over the world in USA, Australia, Germany, Holland, and the UK has sold over 30 million records in his lifetime, has collected a pile of Gold and Platinum records across the world and continues to perform all over the country to adoring fans.

Growing up in London’s East End Billy was drawn to soul singers like Otis Redding and Sam Cooke, as well as pop groups like The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, these influences moulded young Billy to become the successful artist that he is today.

Billy will be performing such hits as Love Really Hurts Without You and Red Light Spells Danger, as well as other hits from his double platinum albums.

After many years taking time to be with his family, Billy started to tour again and last year performed at Parr hall to a packed audience. The tour was a great success and culminated in him getting the bug once more for writing and recording. Billy’s latest album saw him cover some of the songs that inspired him to write and create music all those years ago, which he will performing in the show.

Limited tickets will not be around for long so get your hands on them now!


Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Billy Ocean
Parr Hall
Friday 23 May 2014, 7.30pm
Tickets: £20
01925 442345

Warrington ready for LitFest Weekender

Culture Warrington is getting ready for their LitFest Weekender event during the bank holiday weekend which is set to see a whole range of talented authors and writers making their way to Pyramid.

The LitFest Weekender kicks off with John Hegley’s appearance at Pyramid on Friday 2 May. The acclaimed poet and comedian will read an extract from his new book New And Selected Potatoes and deliver performance pieces which are sung, spoken and awoken with dance. John has performed all over the UK, is a regular at Edinburgh Fringe and has played the main stage at Glastonbury Festival.

Pyramid will be buzzing with activity on Saturday 3 May as lovers of words and budding writers have the chance to attend a range of talks and workshops with some of the best in the business including keynote speakers Curtis Jobling and Helen Walsh.

Featuring a presentation and talk that includes live illustration and cartoons, Curtis Jobling will give an introduction to the acclaimed Wereworld series of fantasy horror novels for teens. He’s possibly most (in)famously known as the designer of the BAFTA winning BBC show Bob The Builder, as well as creator of Raa Raa the Noisy Lion and Frankenstein’s Cat. Don’t be fooled by those preschool credentials though – Curtis’s first love has always been fantasy and horror for older audiences, as you shall quickly discover!

Acclaimed and controversial local author Helen Walsh will take part in a Q&A session, bdiscuss her previous prize-winning books and read an extract from her newly released novel – The Lemon Grove. Helen was born in Warrington in 1976. Her first novel, Brass, was published in 2004 and was the winner of a Betty Trask Prize. Her second novel, Once Upon a Time in England, was the winner of a Somerset Maugham Award and her third novel, Go to Sleep, was published by Canongate to much fanfare in 2011.

Adult fiction author, Lynne Connolly, offers a practical guide to writing erotic fiction for profit and fun, including all the acronyms, rules and the rest, together with the publishers who specialise in publishing the genre. Lynne herself has over 60 novels in circulation.

Kate Feld, editor of the popular Manchizzle blog, will deliver a relaxed two-hour session covering the basics that go into writing engaging blog posts. Whether you’re just starting out or would like a refresher, this workshop gives you the tools you need to publish your own compelling and unique blog.

Can you tell a story in less than 500 words? Learn how to reduce ideas to an ultra-short format with writer and journalist David Gaffney. He’ll leave you wondering why anything has to be longer than a side of A4!  Or why not try your hand at creative writing? Drama specialist Steve Fairclough gives a tutorial on how to write from a variety of perspectives and stimulus including scriptwriting.

Join novelist and publisher Wes Brown for a discussion on the basics of writing for digital platforms. He’ll look at e-publishing, how you develop an online presence and profile, social media, inbound versus outbound marketing, e-book promotions, ‘slow’ blogging, building and maintaining a mailing list and where to go to find news and the latest opportunities.

Get the kids involved in all the fun that words have to offer with creative and crafty sessions. A Tale of Time Travel explores the land of the pyramids, at Pyramid! Be inspired to make an exciting, interactive mini-book. There’s also Rhymetime, a fun and interactive session for under 6s, exploring African actions and sounds through story-telling.

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“It’s fantastic that we’ve been able to secure acclaimed and well respected authors for the second Warrington Literature Festival and we’re looking forward to welcoming them to the town. I hope the people of Warrington and its surrounding areas show their love for books by attending the events”.

For more information visit www.warringtonlitfest.co.uk or call Pyramid Box office on 01925 442345

Vienna Festival Ballet bring their latest show to Warrington

Following on from last year’s stellar performances of Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, the collective are touring the country once again with their latest show.

Swan Lake is the most popular ballet in the world. It’s the ballet that captures like no other the full range of human emotions – from hope to despair, from terror to tenderness, from melancholy to ecstasy.

Featuring lavish costumes, stunning scenery, international stars, and the glorious music from Tchaikovsky make this a night not to be missed.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Swan Lake – Vienna Festival Ballet
Parr Hall
Sunday 11 May 2014, 2.30pm, £18.50 / 16.50 / 11.50 / 11th ticket free
Tickets and information: 01925 442345 www.pyramidparrhall.com

Westlife star comes to Warrington



Shane Filan, former lead-singer of multimillion selling boy-band Westlife, will perform at Warrington’s Parr Hall as part of his solo-tour later this year.

The You and Me Tour will call into Parr Hall on Sunday 9 November at 7.30pm.

The 34-year-old sold more than 45 million records with Irish boyband Westlife but in 2012 after 14 UK number one singles, 12 massive albums and numerous tours, the band decided to call it a day.

For Shane the future meant landing a deal with record giants Universal and beginning work on his first ever solo album, You and Me, which was recorded in both the UK and US.

Shane’s debut album was released in November 2013 featuring the singles Everything To Me, About You and Knee Deep In My Heart. Musically Shane decided to mix things up with some up-tempo and mid-tempo songs, all penned by the man himself. The result is an eclectic mix of pop, soul, country, folk and even a hint of traditional Irish music thrown in for good measure.

His first solo tour has recently come to an end with the singer filling venues up and down the country.

Tickets for Shane’s Warrington show go on sale at 9am on Friday 11 April 2014 and can be purchased via box office 01925 442345 or online www.pyramidparrhall.com

Shane says:
“I’m excited to see what the future will bring. I would love to keep touring because I have such a passion for it. And of course I also want to keep on writing and recording music. It’s very different being out on my own but I’m really enjoying it. As long as I get to carry on doing what I love I’ve got no complaints!”

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Shane Filan – You and Me Tour
Parr Hall
Sunday 9 November 2014, 7.30pm, £31
Tickets and information: 01925 442345 or www.pyramidparrhall.com

Local artist remembers World War I in new piece

A local artist from Warrington is marking the centenary of the First World War by using archived photographs to create a new illustration which will be on display in the foyer of Pyramid arts centre in the town.

Emma Brown’s work represents the scale of the war and the roles undertaken at home and on the front line. The piece is divided into six layers, one for aircraft, two for the front line, one for medical, and another for home front and one for ships and sea travel. The inspiration for the layout came from the Bayeux Tapestry.

The 25-year-old, who graduated from Manchester School of Art with a first class honours degree in 2010, uses hand-rendered processes combined with digital editing and finishing to create her illustrations. Her work is inspired by sights and surroundings, natural forms and patterns, unusual creatures and storytelling.

The piece is part of Culture   Warrington’s World War I Commemoration which will see a range of events and exhibitions across the town over the next four years to mark the 100th anniversary of The Great War.

Emma Brown, artist says:
“I wanted a simple and effective way of capturing a lot of different scenarios while containing them within themed sections. I’ve kept the drawings as true to the images as possible to ensure that my representation is accurate”.

Warrington Music Festival invites bands across the North West to perform

Happy Mondays headline last year’s festival

Culture Warrington are pleased to announce that submissions to play at Warrington Music Festival 2014 open on Friday 11 April.

Warrington Music Festival brings a weekend of live music to Warrington town centre in July 2014. The event showcases emerging talent and offers bands the chance to play their own material at the same festival which was headlined by Happy Mondays in 2013.

Last year’s festival saw the Salford collective play to a crowd of 3000 at the Old Market Place at Golden Square as the original line-up joined each other on stage for one of the first times in 19 years.

Now in its eighth year, this year’s festival promises to deliver more great artists as well as showcasing new music from across the region.

Any band or artist can enter the festival, which is scheduled to take place across Warrington town centre during the weekend of 18 – 20 July.

The event has been organised by Culture Warrington and Score Creative with support from Golden Square Shopping Centre and Warrington Borough Council.

The closing date for submissions is Friday 2 May. For details on how to enter please see below.

To be in with a chance of performing at Warrington Music Festival 2014 email:

Please include:
Artist name
Contact name
Contact number and email address
Brief biography, links to Facebook, Youtube, SoundCloud, etc
Age of band members

The deadline for submissions is Friday 2 May 2014. The artists will then be chosen when the full line up is announced in late May.

New Model Army take to the Parr Hall stage

New Model Army are a legendary global underground cult band. Formed by Justin Sullivan in Bradford in 1980, their beginnings were inspired by Northern Soul, Punk Rock and the incendiary atmosphere of the times.

Since then, they have had a long, creative and eventful journey. They have been massively influential in ‘post-punk’, ‘folk-rock’, ‘politico-rock’, ‘goth’, ‘metal’ and all kinds of musical sub-cultures but they have steadfastly refused to belong to any genre.

Without a ‘genre’ audience, and never having had a Top 20 hit single in any country, New Model Army still have album sales in the millions, have attracted some of the biggest producers on the planet (Glyn Johns, Tom Dowd, Andy Wallace, Bob Clearmountain) and have built up an almost religious devotion amongst fans.

Since marking their 30th anniversary at the end of 2010 with multiple retrospective releases and an ambitious series of two-night stands in cities across four continents, the band have endured a series of misfortunes including the loss of almost all their equipment and archives in a studio fire at the end of 2011.

Originally formed as a three piece, the current five piece features Michael Dean on drums, Dean White on keyboards, Marshall Gill on guitar and their latest addition, Ceri Monger on bass (although all members are multi-instrumentalists).

Meanwhile, for the last four years, award-winning BBC/Channel Four director, Matt Reid, has been putting together a documentary film about the group and trying to keep pace with all the events and changes that have happened during the filming process. A cinematic release is planned for later in 2014.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
New Model Army
Friday 25 April 2014, 7.30pm
Parr Hall
Tickets and information: 01925442345 or www.pyramidparrhall.com

Author inspired by visit to Warrington Museum to appear at Warrington LitFest

Gill Hoffs, the author of a new book which documents the sinking of a ship built in Warrington and launched from Liverpool, is to talk about the book on Friday 25 April as part of Warrington LitFest 2014.

Gill was inspired to write The Sinking of RMS Tayleur after she visited Warrington Museum & Art Gallery with her son and spotted artefacts from the ship’s wreckage. A curator from the museum then began to tell the 34-year-old the story of the disaster which happened in 1854 and is described as ‘the first Titanic’.

The mum-of-one, who is originally from Scotland but now lives in Warrington, was so touched by the shipwreck that she put pen to paper and paid tribute to almost 400 people who lost their lives.

It has taken Gill two years to write the book and on the 160th anniversary of the disaster she reveals new theories behind the sinking and tells the stories of the passengers and crew on the ill-fated vessel.
A book tour has already seen her take in cities across the country and now she’s back in her adopted home town of Warrington on Friday 25 April for the book talk at Pyramid.

During the evening, Gill will also share insights on the practicalities of writing nonfiction including structuring the book, research, overcoming difficulties and dead-ends, approaching publishers and agents, editing, sourcing illustrations, and promoting the finished product and finish with a Q&A.

Gill Hoffs says:
“Giving a talk as part of Warrington LitFest is particularly exciting for me as there’s every chance that descendants of the people who built RMS Tayleur at the Bank Quay Foundry, celebrated her launch in town or travelled on her will be in the audience – and they may not even realise it!”

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Gill Hoffs – book talk
Friday 25 April, 7pm
Pyramid, Palmyra Square South, Cultural Quarter, Warrington, WA1 1BL
Tickets: £3

Fun activities for all this Easter in Warrington

Culture Warrington and partners at Warrington Wolves Foundation are offering another jam-packed programme of holiday activities for children this Easter.

If you love being creative with art and crafts or you like to sing and dance, then our fun holiday workshops are perfect for you.  During the Easter holidays we’ll be making books, creating a drama performance and writing our own songs as well as dancing and having lots of fun together!

Culture Club is a holiday programme at Pyramid in Warrington for children aged 4-8. The activities run for two weeks from 8 until 17 April and each holiday week we develop differently themed activities.

The fun starts on Tuesday 8 April with Arty Tuesdays from 10am-3pm. If you’re over the age of 5, come and join in on messy creative workshops led by experienced artists.

Culture Club offers two different activities on Wednesdays. Stagestruck is a drama and music workshop for children aged 7+ which runs from 10am-3pm. Wolf Print Wednesdays puts on workshops offering dance, drama, drumming, storytelling and arts and crafts, exclusively for children aged 4+ with additional needs 

Thursdays are all about dancing with Fusion & Fused offering fun and creative dance workshops for children aged 5+, again from 10am-3pm.

If that wasn’t enough to keep the kids occupied this Easter, then pop over to Warrington Museum & Art Gallery where there’s a whole host of free craft workshops over the two-week break. Join the Museum staff on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am-3pm and have a go at creating some Easter themed crafts including Eggs-otic Easter Birds.

For more information and to book a place please contact The Wolves Foundation on 01925 248894 or community@wolvesfoundation.com

For further information about Warrington Museum & Art Gallery’s Easter activities call 01925 442399 or email museum@culturewarrington.org


Competition for Local Budding Writers

Children and adults in Warrington are being given the chance to have their work published and win a cash prize as part of Warrington LitFest 2014.

Culture Warrington is offering two creative writing competitions with age categories for children and adults. The Way With Words and Flash Fiction competitions are supported by The Colonel Edelsten Bequest and Waterstones Warrington. Entry is now open and closes on World Book Night, Wednesday 23 April.

For children there are three age groups to enter: 9 and under, 10-13 and 14-17. There are prizes in all three categories including free books from Waterstones and cash for first, second and third place. The winner of each category will have an excerpt of their story published in Warrington Guardian and the full story will be published on both the paper’s and Culture Warrington’s website.

In the children’s Way With Words competition entries must be under 500 words and the story should be set in Warrington. Only children who live or go to school in Warrington can enter. Bob The Builder author and illustrator, Curtis Jobling and Martin Gaw, Chair of The Colonel Edelsten Bequest will be among those judging the children’s entries.

The adult Flash Fiction competition offers budding writers across the North West the chance to have a full version of their story published in Warrington Guardian and to win a cash prize. The work submitted has to be previously unpublished and be 500 words or less. The judges in the Flash Fiction competition include David Gaffney, author of the critically acclaimed micro-fiction collections and Matt Harrop, Manager of Waterstones Warrington.

How to enter Way With Words competition?
If you haven’t already, type up your story on a computer (ask a grown-up if you need help). Send it in an email to arts@culturewarrington.org with the subject ‘Way With Words Competition’ and the age category, for example ‘Under 9’ or ’10-13’ or ’14-17’. Your email must include at the top your name, address, age, gender, school, your parent or guardians name and a telephone number where you can we contacted.

How to enter Flash Fiction competition?
Send your flash fiction story (maximum 500 words) as an email attachment to arts@culturewarrington.org with the subject ‘Flash Fiction Competition’, including the title of your story, your name, occupation and contact email address and phone number.

For more info please visit www.warringtonlitfest.co.uk

Janey Moran, Cultural Engagement Manager at Culture Warrington said:
“I’m really pleased to be judging the Way With Words and Flash Fiction writing competitions on behalf of Culture Warrington and to be supported by Curtis Jobling, The Colonel Edelsten Bequest and Waterstones Warrington. This is a great opportunity for adults and children alike to have their work published in a widely read local publication as well as win cash and book prizes”.

Martin Gaw, Chair of The Colonel Edelsten Bequest said:
“As Chair of the Colonel Edelsten Bequest, a charity who’s aim is to support the arts, culture and heritage in Warrington, I am very pleased that we are able to  be involved in LitFest and in particular to sponsor the literature competitions.”

David Gaffney, Author said:
“I’m delighted to be asked to be part of this new festival and looking forward to working with some Warrington writers in the micro fiction workshop and to be judging the Flash Fiction competition.  In fact one of the stories in my latest book More Sawn Off Tales, was inspired by an accidental visit to an exhibition about moss in Warrington Museum “.

Matt Harrop, Waterstones Warrington Manager and said:
“There are so many great local authors enjoying success at the moment – Helen Walsh, Curtis Jobling, Sally Green, Isobel Harrop, Gill Hoffs – and we want their local bookshop to be a part of the story for the next successful Warrington writer”

The Return of the Mummy

Warrington Museum is looking forward to welcoming back one of its star exhibits after a facelift completed for Mother’s Day! It’s taken more than plastic surgery or Botox to restore this beautifully decorated 3-4,000 year old Egyptian mummy case because the museum discovered it was being attacked by a mysterious growth in the form of white crystals growing on the surface.

Fortunately National Museums Liverpool was able to provide the necessary cosmetic treatment. Conservator Tracey Seddon explains, “The crystals were developing on areas of restoration carried out 30-40 years ago and were causing the paint to crumble and lift. Fortunately the Ancient Egyptian paintwork was spared, but the ‘rot’ was disfiguring the coffin and threatening to damage the artwork of the ancient craftsmen.”

Conservator Tracy Seddon painstakingly restores the decoration on the lid of the mummy case in the studio at National Museums Liverpool.

Conservator Tracy Seddon painstakingly restores the decoration on the lid of the mummy case in the studio at National Museums Liverpool.

Careful conservation treatment has removed the crystals and the loose paint has either been secured with a conservation-grade adhesive, or removed if too crumbly. The damaged areas have then been painted with a thin adhesive solution to prevent further loss and the patches have been re-integrated using archival quality paint. Lost areas of the original paint scheme were not painted in as that could be misleading for gallery visitors and scholars in the future.

Although this painted coffin case and lid is usually known as a “mummy case” the actual occupant of Warrington’s coffin was a male. The writing on the coffin tells us it belongs to a man called Pa-ikh-mennu. He worked at the temple of Amun in Thebe in modern Luxor. Parts of the mummy case have been recycled from an earlier coffin because good quality wood was scarce in Egypt. The coffin was given to the museum in 1905 as a gift from the Egypt Exploration Society.

The Museum is looking forward to welcoming back this popular exhibit and visitors will be able to admire Tracy’s skilful restoration by the beginning of April.

BBC Question Time is held at Pyramid

Culture Warrington’s Pyramid arts centre was the chosen venue for BBC One’s political debate programme Question Time on Thursday 20 March 2014.

The programme, produced by Mentorn Scotland, was chaired by David Dimbleby and saw Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liberal Democrat MP, Danny Alexander; Leigh Labour MP and Shadow Health Secretary, Andy Burhnam; Dominic Raab, Conservative MP; former Director of the Centre for Policy Studies, Jill Kirby, and crime writer Val McDermid, face questions from the studio audience.

The panel discussed a range of current affairs topics chosen by the audience. Amongst the issues debated were the growth of the economy in the North of England and the controversial HS2 high speed rail link taking into account the affects it will have on the North.

It’s the second time the programme has been hosted from the town of Warrington.

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“It’s wonderful that Question Time decided to use one of our venues to film such a popular programme. It really shows the versatility of Pyramid as a building; not only does it have the capacity to host performances and exhibitions but can also facilitate a major television production”. 

PEACE Bring Their Latest Tour to Warrington

Indie rock quartet Peace are back on the road. Following the release of their debut album In Love at the start of 2013 they bring their sound to Parr Hall during the summer of 2014.

As anyone one wise enough to have caught a show throughout the ‘In Love’ campaign will attest – on the road is where Peace thrive. This footage, expertly shot by Jonnie Craig at the Birmingham show in December (link below*) goes someway to capturing the essence of seeing Peace live and the youthful abandon with which their ever-growing crowds of fans get involved.

So here we are – only one year since the debut album and they’re already forging ahead with album number 2; In celebration – and in true Peace fashion – they’re heading back out on tour taking in towns and cities they couldn’t visit during their last tour in December. They open this run of shows headlining Dot to Dot – a festival they also played in 2012 at the other end of the bill. Similarly, this summer they’ll grace the main stage at Reading & Leeds, where last year they packed out the NME tent with an early afternoon slot.


Buzzcocks Play in Warrington

Buzzcocks have been thrilling audiences for over thirty years.  Once called ‘the Beatles of punk’, their music blends high-octane guitar, bass and drum power with heartrending personal statements of love won and lost or dismay at the modern world to create a unique catalogue of unforgettable and immortal music – music they continue to deliver to fans old and new around the world with undiminished passion and energy.

There are hardly any bands performing today that genuinely deserve the adjective ‘legendary’.   Buzzcocks are one of those very few.  Their achievements are staggering: one of the original holy trinity of British punk (with the Sex Pistols and the Clash), innovators of the independent record scene and genuine punk rock superstars who have been cited as inspirational by bands as diverse as REM, Nirvana and Green Day. 

Eight studio albums, over twenty singles and EPs, a constellation of compilations, covers by other bands and songs on film soundtracks and advertisements have put Buzzcocks among the top echelons of British recording artists.  A Mojo Inspiration award in 2006 is just one of the many accolades they have received for their work.

Buzzcocks have forged a unique relationship with their public and are deeply loved and revered by a global audience. They are simultaneously true to their original ideals and open to new ideas – a happy result of their own uncompromising and individual standing.

Over the years, generations of musicians have tried the Buzzcocks methodology and have made their own variations of it. Most are generous in their thanks to the band that started it all.  Those impressed by the recent waves of ‘punk’ bands would do well to spend an afternoon with Buzzcocks’ seminal pop treasure Singles Going Steady, consistently the band’s biggest seller and a masterclass in genre-busting song craft. This compilation of their first UK Top 40 hits is a classic album in every sense, an astounding collection of stunning moments such as Orgasm Addict, What Do I Get? the anthemic Harmony In My Head and, of course, the song that has become their calling card: Ever Fallen In Love With Someone (You Shouldn’t’ve Fallen In Love With?). These songs have been covered by dozens of groups in many styles, a testament to the originals’ strengths not as slices of punk rock history but as examples of song writing craft.

They’re still doing it, better than anyone. Sometimes the archetype is clearly the best.  Buzzcocks – no. 1 in people’s hearts.  Icons, superstars, legends.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Parr Hall
Fri 11 Apr 2014, doors 7.30pm, £20 adv
01925 442345

Pyramid Ballet Students Pass Exams

Pupils from LK Ballet Studios, situated at Pyramid in Warrington, have successfully passed their first Russian Ballet Examinations, specialising in The Legat Syllabus.

Liliana Keating and Phoebe Bostock

LK Ballet Studios is the only Russian ballet school in the Northwest to focus on the principles of the famous ballet dancer, master, teacher and choreographer Nicolai Legat. The Legat class is a choreographic class created anew each day. There are no set exercises, every exercise may be varied by the sequence of steps or a variation of rhythm.

Lilliana Keating and Phoebe Bostock, both aged 6, gained their Preparatory certificate and Anna Kalyapicheva, Charlie Chedgzoy, both aged 8 and Tiffany Dillon, aged 9, gained their Primary certificate. All are now concentrating on mastering their next grade up.

Classes are run every Tuesday by Karolina Romaniszyn-Tong & Libby Blindell.

For more details please visit www.pyramidparrhall.com/classes-at-pyramid

Commotions Singer Plays Intimate Gig in Warrington

Lloyd Cole of 80s indie band Lloyd Cole and The Commotions has had a successful solo career since the band split in the early 90s and now he’s bringing his popular sound to Warrington’s Pyramid next month.
One of the most literate, emotive and witty musicians of his generation, Cole burst onto the indie scene with the Commotions in the mid-80s and stormed the charts with hits such as Rattlesnakes, Perfect Skin and Lost Weekend.

He’s explored many musical genres over the years, most recently releasing the experimental Selected Studies Vol 1 of ambient electronica. He now records and tours solo, based out of his home in Massachusetts. His eagerly awaited new album Standards was out this summer, which Cole describes as sounding ‘like T.Rex or Led Zep playing Willie Nelson and Roy Orbison tunes’.

When asked about the new album Lloyd said: “I wanted to make an album with a small fixed palette of sounds, like a Van Gogh, like ‘Highway 61’.  The format is supposedly dead, but I still want to make albums. Not bunches of songs – albums.  For the last 10 years I’ve been primarily an acoustic musician but this is an album for electric guitars, electric bass and loud drums, with piano and a synthesizer for measure.  Not quite monochrome, then, but not ever-changing either: it has a sound.”

This show is not to be missed. But hurry and get your tickets soon as it’s nearly sold out.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Lloyd Cole
Tuesday 8 Apr 2014, 8pm
Pyramid, Palmyra Square South, Cultural Quarter, Warrington, WA1 1BL
01925 442345

Comedian Tom Wrigglesworth comes to Warrington

Direct from a sell-out run at the Edinburgh festival. Sony Award Winner, Edinburgh Comedy Award Nominee, Chortle & Time Out Award winner and star of Radio 4 and BBC2, Tom Wrigglesworth comes to Pyramid with an exquisite new show.

In turns, poignant and hilarious, Tom takes an emotional journey exploring his profound relationship with his granddad.  Throughout childhood, they would frequently make tape recordings of themselves interviewing each other.  Reflecting on these early conversations, Tom comes to fully understand the influence this man has had on his own life, and explores the fantasy of being able to make ‘one final interview’.

Expect elegant flourishes of language, twisted logic and whimsical storytelling courtesy of one of the finest and most original comics in the UK. You could also expect next week’s lottery numbers, but let’s deal with one thing at a time. Simply put, it’s about Tom.

This show is in association with Comedy Store.


Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Tom Wrigglesworth
Sun 23 March, 7.30pm
Pyramid, Palmyra Square South, Cultural Quarter, Warrington, WA1 1BL
Tickets: £12 / 10
01925 442345

Poet John Hegley Confirmed for Warrington Literature Festival 2014

John Hegley

Warrington Literature Festival 2014 has been organised by Culture Warrington. It runs from 23 April until 9 May, with a Literary Weekender taking place during the first May bank holiday weekend.  The festival features sessions in flash fiction, erotic writings, blogging, book sculptures and e-publishing. Lovers of literature can also look forward to talks by local wordsmiths including Helen Walsh (awarding-winning author of Brass and Once Upon A Time In England) and author and illustrator Curtis Joblin (best-known as the designer of BAFTA winning show Bob The Builder).

The celebration of words gets underway on World Book Night, Wednesday 23 April, with book gifting taking place at Pyramid and Orford Park Library, plus a range of other sites across Warrington.

Friday 25 April sees a talk by Gill Hoffs in association with Wire Writers about her book, The Sinking of RMS Tayleur – The Lost Story of the Victorian Titanic. Gill was inspired to write the non-fiction novel after a visit to Warrington Museum, where she became fascinated by artefacts from the wreckage. Also on this evening’s menu is a screening for the film of the book The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas at Culcheth High School.

Author, Helen Walsh

Warrington’s rich industrial history will be explored by local author Janice Hayes who’ll tell local history stories using Bewsey as a case study on 29 April and Philip Jeffs explores Poetry, Plays, and Prose: A look at intriguing items in Warrington’s Archives relating to literature at Stockton Heath Library on 1 May.

The LitFest Weekender kicks off with John Hegley’s appearance at Pyramid on Friday 2 May. John will read an extract from his new book New And Selected Potatoes, which is a compilation of some of his best work. John has performed all over the UK, is a regular at Edinburgh Fringe and has played the main stage at Glastonbury Festival.

Budding writers are in for a treat on Saturday 3 May when Pyramid will be buzzing with activity for all ages. With Curtis Jobling, Helen Walsh, David Gaffney, Kate Feld, Lynne Connolly, Steve Fairclough, The Wild Writers, and Wes Brown offering sessions in flash fiction, e-publishing, writing erotic romance, illustration, scriptwriting, creative writing, blogging and Q&A sessions, plus drop in crafts activity and children’s sessions – there’s something for everyone.

The jam-packed festival reaches its finale on Friday 9 May with The Paper Cut poetry slam at Pyramid. Slamming is competitive poetry, and the poems are judged on amazing writing, compelling performances and how much the audience enjoys the work until one is crowned the winner, receiving a cash prize as well as the accolade of champion.

In addition to the festival activities and school sessions brought to you by Culture Warrington, LiveWire Warrington and Curious Minds, we are pleased to be working in partnership with The Colonel Edelsten Bequest and Waterstones for the Way With Words writing competition for children and adults. The ‘flash fiction’ competition opens on World Book Day- 6 March and closes on World Book Night 23 April, with winners announced at the end of the festival.


Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“It’s fantastic that we’ve been able to secure acclaimed and well respected authors for the second Warrington Literature Festival and we’re looking forward to welcoming them to the town. I hope the people of Warrington and its surrounding areas show their love for books by attending the events”.

Poet, John Hegley said:
“To Warrington, I’m glad to come. I’ll be bringing my singing and some speaking of spudding. This event it is budding and this verse, I’m afraid is quite clum-sy”.

Author, Helen Walsh said:
“I’m delighted to be able to play a part in this year’s Warrington Litfest. I’m looking forward to helping celebrate Iiterature in my hometown as it has certainly proved to be an inspiration for me. I hope the festival will inspire others in the same way”.


For more information on the events and the writing competition visit www.culturewarrington.org or call Pyramid Box office on 01925 442345.

Local Dancers Take Part in Warrington’s Biggest Dance Show

Shine! is back for 2014 and it’s bigger and better than ever. The annual dance event, which is organised by Culture Warrington, is once again offering dance groups and artists from across Warrington and the North West the opportunity to showcase their talent.

Shine! 2014 will focus on the theme of contemporary dance, in order to develop and raise the profile of this style to complement the existing platforms throughout the year that cater for a range of different styles.

In response to high demand of dancers wanting to take part and a growing audience, Shine! 2014 will move to Parr Hall. The venue offers the opportunity for groups to peer review work and is an opportunity for dance artists and teachers to network.

The dance show will feature artists who showcase their creativity, strong concepts, original choreography and professional aspirations in creating high quality contemporary dance performed by a range of groups of all abilities from children to adults.

Last year Warrington saw increased participation in contemporary dance activity through the Window On Warrington project, with a wide variety of groups taking part and for some, performing in a style that they may not usually practice. This was a huge success and Shine! offers a platform to build on the exceptional talent in Warrington and continue to develop contemporary dance within the borough.

Janey Moran, Cultural Engagement Manager at Culture Warrington said:
“It’s great to see such a high standard of dance being created by groups from across Warrington. I’m excited to see how the groups have responded to this year’s theme of contemporary dance which is informed by and borrows from many other dance styles due to its emergence amongst trained dancers. Shine! has grown year on year and we are pleased to be hosting it at Parr Hall this year, which reflects the growing audience and demand for this performance platform.”

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Shine! 2014
Sunday 23 March, 4pm
Tickets: £5 / 3.50 / 14 family ticket
Parr Hall, Palmyra Square South, Cultural Quarter, Warrington, WA1 1BL
01925 442345

Psychic Sally is Back!

Star of Sky LIVING’s Psychic Sally On The Road and Britain’s favorite TV psychic, Sally Morgan, returns with her outstanding 2014 nationwide tour.

Often referred to as ‘Psychic to the stars’, Sally has built up an extensive client list having read for well-known faces like Katie Price, George Michael and the late Princess Diana.

Since touring each year Sally packs out theatres as people from all over the country come to witness her incredible gift. Her down to earth nature and infectious personality has attracted a whole new audience to the spiritual world and her astounding accuracy keeps audiences on the edge of their seats.

This unique theatrical experience should leave you feeling uplifted and enlightened…as they say seeing is believing!
Please note: Sally Morgan is investigational and the show is for the purpose of entertainment.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Sally Morgan
Parr Hall
Wed 19 Mar 2014, 7.30pm
Tickets: £24
01925 442345

Miles Kane Returns to Parr Hall

After three electrifying homecoming shows in Liverpool in December 2013, Miles Kane takes his exhilarating band on an unmissable fifteen date UK tour which comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Monday 17 March 2014.

Miles, who started his career as the frontman of Indie band The Rascals, is already working on new material for the follow up to his critically acclaimed second album Don’t Forget Who You Are which was released last summer and made the top 10 in the UK charts.

The Birkenhead born indie rocker has enjoyed solo success since releasing his first solo album Colour of the Trap in 2011, which consists of anthems Inhaler and Come Closer.

Miles also has a good friendship with Arctic Monkeys frontman Alex turner, a relationship which was formed when The Rascals supported the band on tour in 2007. This led Miles and Alex to form The Last Shadow Puppets and have a number one album in 2008 with The Age of the Understatement.

2013 was a big year for Miles, not only with the release of his second album, but also playing to a packed out crowd at the John Peel Stage at Glastonbury Festival before joining friends Arctic Monkeys on stage during their headline slot on the Pyramid Stage to perform 505. Miles will also be supporting Arctic Monkeys at their two Finsbury Park Shows in May 2014.

Now Miles and his band, consisting of Jay Sharrock on drums, Ben Parsons on keyboards, Phill Anderson on bass and George Moran on rhythm guitar/vocals, are looking forward to playing to another sold out audience at Parr Hall!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Miles Kane
Parr Hall
Monday 17 March 2014, 7pm
01925 442345


Rock Legends UFO to perform at Parr Hall

British heavy metal rock legends UFO will be performing at Parr Hall, Warrington on Thursday 20th March, fronted by the inimitable vocals of Phil Mogg and featuring other original band members Paul Raymond and Andy Parker plus American guitar hero Vinnie Moore.
UFO were formed in 1969 and their influence was strongly felt in the 1980s heavy metal scene. They have been cited as a primary influence of Steve Harris of Iron Maiden, Kirk Hammett of Metallica and Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, among others.

Seven Deadly, the band’s latest studio album combines present and future with UFO’s greatest fortes. Mogg, Raymond, Parker and Moore released twelve brand-new songs on the album featuring some of the strongest compositions. The album is an atmospherically dense fabric consisting of classy guitars, tight rock grooves and vocals which are unique to UFO.

The UFO frontman’s thoroughly impressive vocal performance goes hand in hand with the awesome compositions on Seven Deadly. The classic rock of Burn Your House Down features all the important UFO strengths, Mojo Town sees the musicians sound tougher than ever, and Year Of The Gun features a pointed reference to UFO’s early days.

This album also showcases the technical skills of Paul Raymond and Andy Parker, their music sounding inspired and faultless at the same time, and Vinnie Moore’s exceptional guitar style deserves to be explicitly mentioned.

UFO continue to be a live force to be reckoned with. Their touring schedule has recently taken them to the UK, Europe, Scandinavia, Brazil, the USA and Canada, and more shows are always on the horizon.

The band have that perfect mix of talent, charisma and experience but also on each individual band member – all bursting with a zest for action and a wealth of ideas.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Parr Hall
Thursday 20 March, 7pm doors
Tickets: £24.50 / 22.50 adv
01925 442345

Mark Watson Returns to Warrington

Acclaimed comedian Mark Watson has just announced that he’ll perform at Parr Hall later this year following a successful gig at the venue in 2012.

The host of BBC’s We Need Answers brings his latest tour Flaws to Parr Hall on Saturday 8 November with tickets on sale from next Monday (24 February) at 9am. It promises to be Watson’s darkest, most personal show yet but luckiest also his funniest.

Winner of five major comedy awards, the Bristol-born funny man is a big hit at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has performed several unusual shows at the festival, including marathon performances lasting 24 hours and more.

His TV credits include popular panel shows Never Mind The Buzzcocks and Mock The Week, where he’s a regular guest.

Also a keen novelist, Watson hosted a literary workshop-cum-interactive comedy show entitled Mark Watson, And His Audience, Write A Novel at the 2006 Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The aim was to write in a month a novel¬ from scratch written entirely from audience suggestions.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Mark Watson – Flaws
Parr Hall
Saturday 8 November 2014, 7.30pm
01925 442345

Parr Hall’s Famous Organ to be Played Again

Ian Tracey

Parr Hall is home to one of the only Cavaillé-Coll organs in the country which is still within its original specification and next month organ recitals are making a welcome return to the venue with renowned organist Ian Tracey.

The organ was originally brought to Parr Hall from Ketton Hall near Stamford in 1925 and has been a main feature on the stage ever since. The venue has hosted concerts and organ recitals from leading orchestras and cathedral organists over the years but this is the first time Ian Tracey has played at Parr Hall since 2000.

Professor Ian Tracey has been organist at the Anglican Cathedral in his home town of Liverpool for over 30 years and his performances there on the famous Willis organ have thrilled the instrument’s thousands of fans around the world and met with praise from the critics.

His career took off after studying organ at Trinity College, London, where he has now been awarded a fellowship, and he’s also studied under scholarship grants in Paris, with acclaimed French organists Andre Isoir and Jean Langlais.

In 1980 he became the youngest cathedral organist in the country and has since played most of the major venues in the UK and an increasing number in Europe. He has also made 23 extensive tours of the USA, playing in all the major cities. The past two seasons have included concerts in New York, Seattle, San Francisco, Bermuda, Paris, Holland, Germany, Jersey & Spain and he returns again to Germany in 2014.

He’s a frequent broadcaster with the BBC and his recordings on the Cathedral Organ have met with wide acclaim from the critics, recording for E.M.I., Chandos and Priory. He regularly examines and over the past 28 years has conducted over 250 concerts with the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra & Chorus.

Ian Tracey also holds fellowships from 20 prestigious musical institutions both here and abroad, including the Royal College of Organists, as one of only 28 honorary fellows worldwide. In 2006, the University of Liverpool conferred upon him Doctor of Music, in recognition of his long and distinguished service to music in Liverpool and of his national and international reputation.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Organ Recital
Parr Hall
Wednesday 12 Mar, 7.45pm
01925 442345

Warrington to host Irish Weekender

Warrington is to hold an Irish celebration next month to coincide with St Patrick’s Day and to celebrate the heritage of a number of its residents.

The Warrington Irish Weekender, which is being produced by Culture Warrington and is commissioned by Warrington Borough Council, will take place over the St Patrick’s Day weekend from Friday 14 until Monday 17 March.

The event has been inspired by the Fleadhs which took place in Warrington in the late 90s and brought the town together with traditional Celtic singing and dancing. 

The programme for the weekend has been put together with input from the town’s Irish Community and support from Deputy Leader of the Council, Mike Hannon who was involved in Warrington’s first Fleadh which was held in 1996. 

The celebration kicks off on Friday evening (14 March) at Pyramid arts centre in the Cultural Quarter with a Ceili, which is a traditional evening of Irish dancing. Rogers Academy of Irish dancers along with Shannagh will take to the stage at Pyramid’s Exhibition Hall to entertain the crowds from 8pm. There will also be the chance for the audience to try their hand at Celtic dancing.

On Saturday (15 March) shoppers will be treated to traditional Irish sounds and dance with three bands playing at a purpose built stage in Golden Square’s Old Market Place, the same site which hosted the Happy Mondays headline slot at Warrington Music Festival last year.

The afternoon of live music starts at 1pm with Beer for Breakfast, a professional Ceili band, who play a lively range of traditional and contemporary Irish music as well as Celtic rock and country rock & roll. Whiskey In The Jar, who are renowned for being the North of England’s favourite Irish band, will also be performing during the afternoon, along with Celtic Knot, a Merseyside based six piece band. Irish cuisine including traditional stew and pints of Guinness will be on offer throughout the day. 

On Sunday 16 March members of the Irish community will be joined by the Mayor of Warrington in a parade from the town’s Irish Club on Orford Lane to St Mary’s Roman Catholic Church on Buttermarket Street. The public are invited to join the march, which will also involve a pipe band and Irish dancers, and attend mass at the church. After the mass the group will return to the Irish club for refreshments and a music act. 

The four day festival will culminate on St Patrick’s Day (Monday 17 March) with a closing celebration at the Irish club comprising of a day of entertainment and traditional Irish food.

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“It’s important to Culture Warrington to not let this weekend pass without celebrating St Patrick’s Day and the heritage of the town’s Irish residents and descendants.  Everyone enjoys a good Celtic ‘knees-up’ and there’s plenty going on during the festival to entertain you”.

Cllr Mike Hannon, deputy leader of the council, said:
“I’m delighted we are supporting this cultural celebration and hope the people of Warrington join in the festivities. I know many residents will remember the first Fleadh, which took place all those years ago, and it will be great to come together as a town once again to mark this occasion.”

Camel Rock into Parr Hall

Join Camel at Parr Hall as they perform a career-spanning selection of all-time favourite hits including the whole of The Snow Goose album for the first time since the Royal Albert Hall in 1975.

In this prevailing era of ‘distinguished rock bands’, Camel stands among the best. Classic survivors in the ultimate sense, Camel continue their forward movement having returned to the spotlight in 2013.

Andrew Latimer (guitar, vocals) the unwavering vanguard of the group, will be joined by long time band member, Colin Bass (bass vocals), with Denis Clement on drums, Guy LeBlanc on keyboard along with keyboardist and special guest Jan Schelhaus who will complete the lineup.

A celebratory tour, like many bands before them, Camel, have considerably more to celebrate. For several years, Andrew Latimer was battling terminal illness at the same time his friend and former band mate Peter Bardens
succumbed to lung and brain cancer. Ten years on, Latimer has regained his health and is looking forward to performing the epic Snow Goose in tribute to his friend, and in celebration of a career spanning more than 40 years.

This two-set tour will embrace compositions recorded throughout those years in a personal covenant of appreciation for a deeply rewarding life of

The Cabinet of Curiosities… tell us what you think

Everyone likes receiving compliments – especially on Valentine’s day – and at the Museum we’re no different. Here are just a few of the very nice things some of our visitors have said about the new Cabinet of Curiosities gallery

If you haven’t been to have a look yet, it’s fully open now and don’t forget to let us know what you think by tweeting us @warringtonmus (#cabinetofcuriosities) or posting a review on TripAdvisor… or if you’re a bit old school you could always fill in the comments book!





Perfect Girls Night Out at Parr Hall

Looking for something different for your next girly night out? Then don’t miss 51 Shades of Maggie, a cheeky parody on the bestselling novel Fifty Shades of Grey, as it comes to Parr Hall for one night only on Sunday 9 March 2014.

Direct from sell-out runs in Glasgow, Belfast and Dublin smash hit comedy 51 Shades of Maggie tells the story of loveable Maggie Muff and her search for love.  Maggie is a working class girl who, like most women, has been let down by all the men in her life.

Attending an interview at the Social Security Office Maggie meets the handsome and hunky Mr Big!  But will Mr Big turn out to be the man of her dreams, or will his “Private Room of Pain” put her off?

51 Shades of Maggie was originally spurned from the Facebook posts of its writer Leesa Harker. She kept the social media site entertained with a Belfast-based spoof of Fifty Shades of Grey, which went viral and had 29,000 followers. The play eventually hit the stage in Northern Ireland in January 2013 with Maggie Muff, Big Sally Ann and Mr Big selling out  9,000 seats in one venue and now the show is right here in Warrington.

This hilarious new play is full of naughty bits and will have you laughing out loud.  Join Maggie and her friends on this (slightly filthy) journey of love, booze and whips!

Prepare for the funniest, sexiest (and maybe dirtiest) show of the year.

Please note due to the strong language and themes of an adult nature this show is deemed unsuitable for anyone under the age of 16.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
51 Shades of Maggie
Parr Hall
Sunday 9 Mar 2014, 7.30pm
Tickets: £20 / 18
01925 442345

Billy’s Back in Warrington

After last year’s sell-out show, Billy Ocean, is returning to Parr Hall again on Friday 23 May this year! Tickets are priced at £20 and go on sale at 9am on Monday 17 February.

If you missed the British king of soul when he sold out Parr Hall in 2013 then now’s your chance to see his brand-new show with all the hits including When The Going Gets Tough and Caribbean Queen.

Billy, who has sold over 30 million records in his lifetime, has collected a pile of Gold and Platinum records across the world and hit the number one spot worldwide in pop charts in the USA, Australia, Germany, Holland, and the UK.

Born in Trinidad, Billy settled in London’s East End when he was just seven years old. The calypso crazy kid soon got turned on to soul singers like Otis Redding and Sam Cooke, as well as pop groups like The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, leading him to spend much of his study time in the music room.

After success on both sides of the Atlantic in the 1960s and 70s with smash-hit singles including Love Really Hurts Without You and Red Light Spells Danger and a double platinum album, Billy, who is the biggest selling black recording artist the UK has ever produced, decided to take a break from music to spend time with his young family.

But in 2007, with the kids all grown up, he went back out to perform his hits again, this time with his daughter Cherie on backing vocals, with live dates in the UK and Europe, USA, Canada, and the Caribbean. The tour was a great success and culminated in him getting the bug once more for writing and recording. 2008 saw Billy back in the studio for the first time in 15 years, recording his brand new album Because I Love You – which was released in 2009.  2010 saw the release of The Very Best of Billy Ocean, which sold 72,000 copies in 4 weeks.

Now he’s well back into the swing of performing live and is entertaining audiences across the globe.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Billy Ocean
Parr Hall
Friday 23 May 2014, 7.30pm
Tickets: £20
01925 442345

Sweet Sounds of Showaddywaddy Come to Warrington

Europe’s most successful ever exponents of retro-inspired rock & roll will be bringing their succession of hits to Warrington’s Parr Hall on Saturday 8 March 2014.

Showaddywaddy boast 23 Top 40 singles and 10 Top 5 hits including;  When You Got What it Takes, Three Steps to Heaven, Hey Rock & Roll and one Number 1, Under the Moon of Love. The band have also had 15 massive selling albums (including the Christmas Number 1 in 1978), and have won countless industry awards.

They’ve played over 50 times on Top of the Pops, they’ve performed at The Royal Variety Show (once to the delight of The Queen Mother, who actually requested to meet the band post-performance), and now they’re coming to Parr Hall to perform for you!

Come and listen to Showaddywaddy’s Sweet Music, as they take you for a little walk Under the Moon of Love!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Saturday 8 March 2014 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £20
01925 442345


Make 2014 the year to achieve your goals!

Whether you choose, fun, health, fitness or family in 2014 LiveWire offer everything you need to
get fit and active for the year ahead!

With the new year well and truly in full swing, and the last chocolates ate, there has never been a better time to re-launch your new year’s resolutions and kick-start a more active and healthier lifestyle.

LiveWire offer weight loss groups, new skills workshops, stop smoking help, over 150 fitness classes, 11 libraries, six fitness suites and volunteer opportunities throughout Warrington to help you achieve your goals for 2014.

To celebrate the new year LiveWire has launched a brand new website with interactive timetables making it even easier to find the groups, classes or activities for you and your family.

Keith Maddock, LiveWire’s Operations Manager said

“Our six leisure centres have launched a variety of new classes and fitness programmes for 2014, while our Lifestyles team have added new sessions and venues to our free lose weight and stop smoking drop-in groups.

LiveWire’s 11 libraries have also been busy and re-launched their online services and e-books with thousands of free books to download providing a great opportunity for people to try out their new tablets and e-book readers which they may of got for Christmas.”

To join or to find out more visit LiveWire’s brand new website at www.livewirewarrington.co.uk

Life With… Photography Competition

Tell a story in a photo and win fantastic prizes through our photo competition.

It’s not about having a great camera – it’s about an image that shows everyday life with an illness, a condition or a disability. Entries can be happy, sad, fun, melancholic – anything that reflects something of the reality of life for yourself, or someone close to you.

Your photo might show: your husband playing football with your son, who needs oxygen therapy / your diary showing your chemotherapy dates circled / a mirror self-portrait of you injecting insulin / your grandfather, who has dementia, cuddling his granddaughter — the possibilities are endless.

Entry Details—please read carefully as incomplete entries may be declined. Please include your name, address and contact details. These details will not be displayed publicly. Entry is for Warrington residents only.

But please also specify the name and details you are happy to appear with your photo publicly. (for example ‘David from Warrington’, or ‘David Jones, 40, a dad of two and a postman from Long Lane’.)Include a brief description of the photo description – whatever helps people to understand your image. It might be one sentenced or two hundred words.
Please say if Warrington CCG can use your photo in our future publicity material. If the photo is not of yourself, please confirm you have the permission of the subject for its use. Please indicate whether you are happy to be contacted regarding chances to help our ongoing NHS work in Warrington. For example this might include the chance to be in focus groups.
Entries may also be displayed online, in the local press, and at public events. Entry is open until midnight on February 28, 2014.
The winners will receive prizes from Live Wire and Culture Warrington.
Warrington CCG’s governing body will pick the winners from a shortlist. The categories are under 16, 17-25. 26-64. and over 65. The judges decision is final.
To enter, email photos and information to stephen.bailey@warringtonccg.nhs.uk and include ‘Life With…’ in the email subject line. Warrington CCG T: 01925 843636 | F: 01925 843602 | www.warringtonccg.nhs.uk
Arpley House, 110 Birchwood Boulevard, Birchwood, Warrington WA3 7QH


Boyband Five Visit Parr Hall as Part of Charity Appeal

From left to right: Abz, Ritchie, Pam Rowlands, Sean and Scott


As part of ITV The Big Christmas Reunion, the band Five visited Parr Hall in Warrington to join in a tea dance session run by Age UK Mid Mersey.

You can catch Age UK Mid Mersey and Parr Hall on ITV The Big Christmas Reunion programme on 12 December, 9.00pm on ITV2 and again on 14 December, 5.30pm on ITV, where band Five join in a tea dance session run by Pamela Rowland (Age UK Mid Mersey president) and a team of dedicated volunteers who proudly raise funds to help support local Age UK Mid Mersey services for older people. 

Funds generated from these tea and social dances are kindly donated to Age UK Mid Mersey to help support local services for older people. 

ITV’s Text Santa is raising money and awareness for six UK based charities, including Age UK which will benefit from funds to ensure vital services are available to keep older people warm this winter.   

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said: “It’s fantastic that Five came to Warrington to take part in the Tea Dance which meets at our venue every week. The fact that footage of the band at Parr Hall has also been used in the video for The Big Reunion’s Christmas single ‘I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday’ is great for the venue.”

Mark Lunney, Age UK Mid Mersey’s Chief Officer, said: “We are really excited to be part of Text Santa and see our big moment on national television on Thursday, 12th and Saturday, 14th. It is all for a great appeal so we want to encourage everyone to dig deep in their pockets and donate to Text Santa. We hope you will be as glued to your TV as we will be here at Age UK Mid Mersey.”

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: “Winter can be a difficult time for many older people and Text Santa is incredibly important as it raises funds for the vital services Age UK’s national and local partners deliver that help to keep older people warm and well in the winter. It is great to see the services at Age UK Mid Mersey featured on The Big Christmas Reunion.”

ITV’s Text Santa raises funds for six charities this year – Age UK, Barnardo’s, BeatBullying, British Heart Foundation, CLIC Sargent and Help the Hospices.

The live Text Santa show will be broadcast on ITV at 8pm on Friday 20 December. Presenters include Ant & Dec, Phillip Schofield & Holly Willoughby and Christine Bleakley & Paddy McGuinness.

Take Part in Lantern Making this Christmas

Last year’s Town Hall projection

Workshops will be held in the town centre and across Warrington on Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 December to give you the chance to design your own unique lantern, which can be used in this year’s lantern parade.

The Warrington lantern parade first began in 2009 and has now grown to attract over 1000 participants. On Thursday 12 December children from schools across the town will take part in the magical parade in the town centre which will culminate in a spectacular laser show that’s not to be missed.

The Lantern parade workshops also take place at primary schools all across Warrington.  Recent partnerships with Liverpool Lantern company have helped to animate the parade and bring life to the streets.  The aim of the parade is to bring people from across Warrington together to celebrate the festive period. 

This year Queen’s Gardens will host a variety of restaurants and bars, from the Cultural Quarter, who will be serving refreshments.  There will also be live entertainment, music, carols and activities for all the family to enjoy. 

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“It’s fantastic that we can involve so many young people across Warrington in one event, especially at Christmas time. The parade promises to be full of colour and will brighten up the town this December”.

Frances Nunn, teacher at St Elphin’s (Fairfield) C E Primary School said:
“We enjoyed taking part in last year’s lantern parade event. Those children who were able to walk on the day really enjoyed the whole experience. The light show at the Town Hall really opened the children’s eyes to aspects of art and culture they would not normally get an opportunity to see”.

Free Lantern Making Workshops

7th December Bridge Street 10am – 4pm
  Warrington Museum 1 – 3pm
  Stockton Heath Library 10 – 11am & 11.30am – 12.30pm
  Orford Library 1.30 – 2.30pm & 2.30pm – 3.30pm
8th December Bridge Street 10am – 4pm

WOW…what a show!!

WOW…what a show!!

Last weekend saw 500 local dancers take to the streets of Warrington one last time to celebrate the RLWC2013 tournament within the town

Dancers from ages 3- 87 told the tale of two teams; looking at themes crossing the geographic elements and cultures between Samoa and Warrington.

The 40 minute performance piece was split into 7 sections starting at Market Gate which later inviting the audience to travel with the performers down Horesmarket Street towards the stadium.

The performance was a partnership project between the Wolves Foundation and Culture Warrington with financial support from the Arts Council England and Warrington Borough Council.

Window on Warrington was created by Artistic Director Stacey Goodall who led a team of 12 local dance artists through the creative process and rehearsals. The team have worked with local schools, colleges, universities and community groups, engaging with over 500 participants since March.

On reflection of the project Stacey Goodall commented: “It’s a really inclusive and diverse project that celebrates Warrington and the people in the town. As a local girl I’m proud to have led the performance piece it’s been great to celebrate the artistic talent within the town!”

The visual performance engaged the large audience through the use of props, flags, giants, pyrotechnics, stage effects and popular music taken from Warrington such as the Stone Roses and George Formby!

Keith Cahillane, Head teacher at St Andrew’s CE Primary School said: “The spectacle was superb and the substantial crowd who had watched the show had to appreciate the hard work of the many organisers and volunteers who helped make this event happen. As Head teacher of a school contributing eight dancers, I felt extremely proud to work in and represent Warrington.”

The WOW dancers later travelled to the Halliwell Jones Stadium where they joined other North West dancers and the RLWC2013 Elite Cheerleaders in the large scale pitch performance of the Viral dance during half time of the Samoa V Fiji Quarter Final game.

In addition to the unique town centre performances the WOW dancers have been invited to perform on the pitch at the RLCW2013 Final at Old Trafford on the 30th November. The local young people will be performing in front of crowds of 72,000, which will be an unforgettable experience for all!

The whole project has been a fantastic opportunity for all involved and is something that we hope to build upon as we continue to work alongside our partners at Culture Warrington.

Congratulations and thank you to all performers, facilitators, volunteers and group leaders involved!

Groups include:

Fusion Elite, Fusion Pre Elite, Fusion community classes of all ages, FUSED, Velocity Dance of all ages, Angels Dance Academy- all ages, GRACE over 50’s, Wolfprint, Urban Footsteps, Further Footsteps, Sarah Royle School of Dance, Shooting Stars Dance Academy, Viscaria Dance, Palms School of Dance, Bridgewater High School, Warrington Collegiate, Edge Hill University, Bruche Primary School, Cinnamon Brow CE Primary School, Penketh South CP School, St Andrew’s CE Primary School, St Stephen’s Catholic Primary School, Westbrook Old Hall Primary School.


Amy Jackson, Sindy Richardson, Kat Shakeshaft, Kelly Rice, Beth Callender, Sam Hickey, Lyndsey Thomas,  Sarah- Jane Lockwood, Zanna Dennis, Karen Elliott, Belinda Grantham

WOW Professional Dance Company

Becky Ankers, Rachel Baldwin, Sam Broadbent, Theo Fapohunda, Sam Shaw, Sarah Hall.

For more information on how to get involved in dance classes and future events please contact  us on: 01925 442884 or  info@culturewarrington.org

Crafty Swap Shop Saves Fashion From Landfill

Loads of Clothes, Nothing to Wear? Join Team V Warrington’s Swap Shop!

Culture Warrington are pleased to be supporting Team V Warrington in a swap shop event hosted at Pyramid in the heart of the Cultural Quarter. This event is run entirely by young volunteers that want you to know that 10,000 clothes are thrown away every 5 minutes in the UK alone. Don’t throw it! Change it or Exchange it and save fashion from landfill! Swaps and customisations are a great way to get a totally new look whilst reducing waste.

Team v is a volunteer network powered by young people who are socially aware and want to change things for the better. Working in partnership with vInspired, this exciting programme is in its third year of delivery. It gives 18 – 25 year old volunteers the chance to change the world, one campaign at a time.

The event at Pyramid on Thursday 28 November from 3pm-7.30pm includes clothes and crafts for swaps as well as an opportunity to share ideas of upcycling and customising clothes.

Come along to this great event and save fashion!


50 Years to the Day Since Rolling Stones Came to Warrington

Today marks exactly 50 years since The Rolling Stones played at Warrington’s Parr Hall on Saturday 25 November 1963.

The band, who had just finished their first British tour, sold out the 1,100 capacity venue even though they’d only released two singles and hadn’t brought out their first album.

Despite having a number of refurbishments Parr Hall has remained relatively similar since the gig, which can be seen in photographs of the band on stage with the iconic Cavaille-Col Organ clearly visible in the background, which has remained untouched since 1925.

Photographs, taken by a local named Chris Culleton who’s known as the Longford Lover, also show Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Brian Jones, Bill Wyman and Charlie Watts in the venue’s dressing rooms.

At the time the band were growing more and more popular and three days earlier made an appearance on UK TV show Ready, Steady, Go! where backstage they heard about the assassination of John F. Kennedy, an event which would feature in the lyrics of their hit Sympathy For The Devil in 1968.

Parr Hall, a relatively small venue, has a history of hosting gigs from big name bands. On 23rd May 2012 the Stone Roses played their first gig in 16 years since their split in 1996.


To this day The Rolling Stones have gone onto release 107 singles, 57 music videos, 30 compilation albums and have played more than 1,600 live shows including a headline slot at Glastonbury in June 2013. 

Chris Persoglio, Venue and Events Manager at Parr Hall said:
“It’s fantastic that so many huge bands, like The Rolling Stones, have chosen to come to Warrington to play at Parr Hall. The fact that we were able to host a Rolling Stones gig as they were coming up to the height of their fame is great for the venue”.


Two New Exhibitions Open in Warrington

A cultural crawl between The Gallery At Bank Quay House and Warrington Museum & Art Gallery takes place with an opening of two new exciting exhibitions celebrating the talent of local artists on Friday 29 November.

A preview of LifeOnLife, an exhibition featuring drawing and paintings produced by participants in the life drawing classes which take place at Pyramid every Monday, will start at 5pm at The Gallery At Bank Quay House.

For beginners to accomplished artists, the workshops provide an opportunity to learn or practise the essential skills of observation drawing.  The human figure offers every challenge – line, shape, tone, colour, perspective and composition. Life drawing has traditionally been the cornerstone of any art training.

Life drawing works

The cultural crawl then moves to Warrington Museum & Gallery at 6pm where Reflections…onto through and beyond, an exhibition by local artist Colin Grimes, opens. Colin has created a series of stunning and cleverly engaging paintings which take you on a journey beyond the reflections on Lymm’s shop windows; some of which have become archives as the businesses change hands.

Colin was keen to display his painting in the gallery as a virtual walk through Lymm Village. There is also a parallel series of paintings reflecting life in other countries where people are using public transport. The exhibition is kindly supported by Richard Brown Wealth Management Ltd. and continues until 22 February 2014.

Come and join us to see two great exhibitions in one evening! Light refreshments will also be available.

Artist Julie Scott said:
“There are very few life drawing classes in the north west, so we are very fortunate to have classes at Pyramid arts centre. We also feel lucky and privileged to have the opportunity to be part of an exhibition at The Gallery At Bank Quay House. The exhibition illustrates what an amazingly diverse group of creative people are involved in life drawing in Warrington. It’s a fantastic mix of people who inspire each other and always welcome new members”.

Artist Colin Grimes said:
“I am delighted to be able to exhibit my series of Lymm paintings at the Warrington Museum & Art Gallery. The layers of overlapping images, seen through the shop windows, reflect and celebrate village life. The ordinary becomes extraordinary”.



Jason Manford Comes to Warrington

Comedian Jason Manford comes to Warrington’s Parr Hall for two nights on Friday 13 and Saturday 14 December with his First World Problems tour. 

The show promises to feature a wealth of comedy anecdotes, misunderstandings and audience banter delivered with Jason’s likeable charm and teasingly intelligent wit.

Jason has had a busy time since he was last on the road. After his opera singing turn saw him emerge the winner on  Born To Shine (ITV1) Jason  put his new found talent into practice joining Alfie Boe on tour prior to a well-received run in the critically acclaimed hit west-end musical Sweeney Todd alongside Michael Ball and Imelda Staunton. However, his comedy bones weren’t completely idle as he enjoyed appearances on QI (BBC Two), Big Fat Quiz of the Year (Channel 4), and Comedy World Cup (Channel 4).

Stand up sets on Live at the Apollo (BBC One), Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow (BBC One) and The Royal Variety Performance (ITV1, 2009) have all helped establish Jason as a nationally known comic, a position which made him the ideal host of ITV’s reality comedy competition, Show Me the Funny.

A second series of his hilarious creation Walk on the Wild Side (BBC One) aired in 2010, and Jason has hosted Comedy Rocks with Jason Manford (ITV1) and been a regular panelist on two series of Odd One In (ITV1).

Jason said:
“Some of you might think I’ve had a career change what with all the opera and musical theatre I’ve been doing lately. Not a chance, I’m excited to be getting back to what I really love the most – stand up!”

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Jason Manford
Friday 13 and Saturday 14 December 2013, 8pm
Tickets: £22.50
01925 442345

Roy Wood’s Rock & Roll Christmas Comes to Parr Hall

Rock ‘n’ roll legend Roy Wood will be kicking off Christmas in Warrington in style on Tuesday 10 December at Parr Hall.

Distinctive appearance, big beard, big bag of hits…Roy Wood’s Rock & Roll Band celebrate their 40th anniversary with this special Christmas tour full of great music and great fun. Their show at Parr Hall is the only one in the North West, and on the night the band will be joined by Slade tribute ‘Slyde Alive’.

Expect to hear all the hits including I Can Hear the Grass Grow, Flowers in the Rain, Blackberry Way, California Way, See My Baby Jive, and of course, Roy’s Christmas chart-topper, I Wish it Could Be Christmas Everyday.

Get your tickets now for this ‘wizzard’ night out! Altogether now…I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everydaaaay!
Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Roy Wood
Tuesday 10 December 2013 – 8pm
Tickets: £20
01925 442345

Warrington’s Peter Price is Back at Pyramid this December

Singer and guitarist Peter Price brings his mesmerising show to Pyramid on Saturday 7 December.

Price has a brilliant international reputation, having played festivals and concerts across the UK, Europe, and North America. A gifted performer, his concerts and performances take the listener on strange and exotic journeys from the country blues style of Robert Johnson, Blind Willie McTell, and Leadbelly, to Latin American dances, Celtic pipe and harp tunes, hymns, and Indian ragas.

Price’s performances demonstrate a mind-boggling mastery of the acoustic guitar, a rich singing voice, and a relaxed yet compelling stage presence. He will also be joined on stage by some very special guests. His performances have delighted audiences worldwide, and guarantee an evening not to be missed.

Manchester City Life have praised his performance saying ‘his music sends shivers down my spine’. Last year’s performance was a sell-out, so book early to avoid disappointment!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Peter Price
Saturday 7 December 2013 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £11
01925 442345

New pop up craft shop comes to the Museum

Warrington Museum & Art Gallery has dedicated one of its recently refurbished galleries to exhibiting and selling Contemporary British Craft… for a limited time only and just in time for Christmas!

The new craft shop, located in the WREN gallery, will stock work by nationally renowned craft makers from around the country, as well as showcasing the talents of local makers.

The Museum have teamed up with local jeweller Heather Fox to create this new venture, as part of the third Warrington Contemporary Art Festival.

Heather started making jewellery at an evening class before returning to University in 2004 to study for her degree in Applied Arts, Jewellery & Metalwork.  She set up her business in 2007 as part of her Professional Practice studies and has since exhibited at various shows and galleries across the country.

The pop up craft shop will offer visitors the opportunity to purchase unique and stunning craftwork, including jewellery, ceramics, prints and textiles.

Some of the new stockists for 2013 include punctured artefacts from Dionne Marshall, glasswork by Abby Noble, enchanting cyanotypes from The Way to Blue, carved couture by Thrashion, and laser cut jewellery from Finest Imaginary.

Silent Disco Marks End of Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival 2013

To celebrate the end of another successful Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival, a free Silent Disco will take place in Queens Gardens on Friday 22 November from 5pm to 9pm with a selection of Warrington’s finest DJs.

The ultra-cool phenomenon that is Silent Disco comes to Warrington next Friday with headphones with three music channels to choose from spanning different genres of music including; indie, pop, house, funk and soul!

Resident DJs Lisa Robertson and Perry Marshall-Heath will be spinning the indie vinyl, while Paul Blaney & Diddy take to the decks with the best soul and funk tunes around. Ste Oates in conjunction with Youth Music Dance will be playing the finest dance anthems.  

Be amazed as the dance floor is split into three halves as you and your friends bust the moves and throw the shapes to the coolest tunes. Warrington won’t remain silent for long!

Please note: This event is free but the rental of headphones requires a £5 refundable deposit.

The Houghton Weavers are Back in Warrington

Everyone’s favourite Lancashire folk group, The Houghton Weavers make a return to Pyramid on Friday 6 December for their much-loved Christmas show.

Now in their 37th year, The Houghton Weavers’ shows are known for their unique blend of English folk music sung in Lancashire dialect, humour, and audience participation, guaranteeing a wonderful evening of entertainment, suitable for all the family.

Over the years, they’ve recorded 30 albums, three DVDs, and have made countless radio and television appearances including their own BBC show Sit Thi Deawn.

The Houghton Weavers’ experience, style, and professionalism ensures that as their motto says, they will always ‘Keep Folk Smiling’.
Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
The Houghton Weavers
Friday 6 December 2013 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £12/14
01925 442345

Limehouse Lizzy & The Guns ‘n’ Roses Experience Rocks Out Parr Hall

Real Rock Legends featuring Limehouse Lizzy and The Guns ‘n’ Roses Experience will be coming to Parr Hall for an evening of pure classic rock with Real XS DJ Mike Sweeney on Friday 29 November.

Renowned for an action-packed, pyrotechnic-fuelled explosion of a show, Limehouse Lizzy have been keeping the spirit of Thin Lizzy alive and well, and dominating stages worldwide. The band have also added a tribute in their set to ex-Thin Lizzy guitarist and world renowned solo artist Gary Moore, who sadly passed away last year. Limehouse Lizzy’s attention to detail and playful audience interaction have led them to be called ‘beyond tribute’ by critics and fans alike.

They’ll be joined on the night by The Guns ‘n’ Roses Experience, who’ll meticulously recreate every visual detail and musical note to capture that reckless spirit of the original Guns ‘n’ Roses legendary live performances. Expect all the favourites including Welcome to the Jungle, Paradise City, Knocking on Heaven’s Door, Sweet Child O’Mine, and many more.

Tickets are available now for this great night out celebrating real rock legends, and good old rock ‘n’ roll!
Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Real Rock Legends – Limehouse Lizzy & The Guns ‘n’ Roses Experience
Friday 29 November 2013 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £17.50
01925 442345

Rat Pack Live Comes to Warrington

Boasting stars from the West End, a brand-new spectacular show featuring the kings of swing – Sammy Davis Jnr, Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra – is coming to Warrington!

Described as possessing “all the panache and attitude of Sammy, Dean and Frank during their Vegas heyday”, hit show Rat Pack Live combines the sound of big band swing with an all-star cast.

The evening’s Dean, Mark Halliday, has performed as Dean Martin to critical acclaim both in the West End of London and in international touring productions. Mark also spent two years in the States creating the role of Hades in Disney’s new musical Hercules and has lead appearances in runaway touring hit shows Girls Night Out and Aspects of Love under his belt.

The evening’s Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis Jnr exude similarly astounding stage presence. Their impressive credentials include:

Richard Shelton as Frank Sinatra – gained rave revues as Ol’ Blue Eyes in West End hit Rat Pack Confidential – “A splendidly tough yet laid back performance”, The Times, “. . . sings the hits with style and captures Sinatra’s domineering personality” Daily Telegraph.

Jim Whitley as Sammy Davis Jnr – as well as extensively touring the UK as both Sammy and Nat King Cole, the former Manchester City international footballer has previously performed alongside Judy Carmichael at New York’s famous Rainbow Rooms.

Together the talented trio combine ‘swingsationally’ in Rat Pack Live. Featuring all the patter and razzamatazz of the Rat Pack’s infamous live stage show, music fans are invited to join the UK’s number one Sammy, Dean and Frank live concert extravaganza.

This show comes with a group booker deal so is the perfect night time entertainment for your Christmas night out!
Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Rat Pack Live
Parr Hall
Saturday 30 November – 8pm
Tickets: £22 / 20 / group booker deal available
01925 442345

Warrington’s mummified head has arrived back in New Zealand

Toi mokos are carried into Te Papa

A Toi moko or mummified head which was kept in Warrington Museum & Art Gallery for 170 years has been returned to Te Papa Tongarewa, the national museum of New Zealand, following a repatriation ceremony in Warrington which took place on Friday 25 October.

The Toi moko was one of eight Maori tattooed heads in England, Ireland and Guernsey that was repatriated back to New Zealand last month.

Representatives from Warrington Borough Council, who own the head, and Culture Warrington, who run Warrington Museum & Art Gallery, were joined by delegates from Te Papa at a traditional repatriation ceremony at Warrington Town Hall before the delegates travelled to the other side of the world with the head which was packaged in a special crate.
The signing of an official document by Cllr Terry O’Neill and delegates from Te Papa marked the handover of the Toi moko from Warrington Borough Council to the New Zealand authorities.

Once back in New Zealand, the Toi mokos were greeted with an outpouring of grief from Maori residents and were welcomed with a traditional Maori ceremony at Te Papa.

Toi moko adorned with traditional and ancient feathered cloaks as a sign of their high status. The ancestors are being comforted with tears by Maori elders.

Maureen Banner, Chair of Culture Warrington said:
“We have been prepared to repatriate the Toi Moko, which was held in Warrington Museum, for a long time and we recognise that the right thing to do is to return the Toi Moko to its home. We respect the Maori culture and were delighted to be asked to be involved in the repatriation ceremony”.

Cllr Kate Hannon, Executive Board Member for Leisure, Community and Culture at Warrington Borough Council said:
“It was a pleasure to be asked to be involved in the repatriation ceremony and it has been a privilege to work closely with Te Papa. We have a good understanding of different cultures and know it was appropriate to repatriate Toi moko. This special item is now back where it belongs in its Maori homeland”. 

Te Herekiekie Herewini, Repatriation Manager at Te Papa Museum said:
“It has been a privilege to work with the Warrington Borough Council and Warrington Museum to achieve the return of the Warrington Toi moko to his homeland.  This generosity of spirit by the Warrington Borough Council and Culture Warrington reminds New Zealanders of our long standing relationship between our two peoples.”


The Stylistics Bring an Evening of Soul to Parr Hall

With an abundance of charisma, style and harmony, The Stylistics are one of the best-selling soul groups ever and now they’re coming to Parr Hall for a night full of entertainment.

The Stylistics were formed in Philadelphia in 1966 from two groups, The Percussions and The Monarchs.  After working locally for a number of years, the group were approached by Bill Perry who asked if they would be interested in recording. 

Their first song You’re a Big Girl Now was recorded at Virtue Recording Studio, a local studio in Philadelphia. This song was written by the group guitarist at the time, Robert “Doc” Douglas and Road Manager, Marty Bryant. 

After the success of You’re A Big Girl Now, they wanted to naturally follow up with an album release. Hit veteran producer Tom Bell was contacted and was hired to produce the group’s first album. The album was entitled The Stylistics and from that album came Stop, Look, Listen to your Heart, You Are Everything and Betcha By Golly Wow.  The ball continued to roll with the release of their second album entitled Round Two. The Stylistics were becoming known as the Philly group with the sweet love songs. 

Herbert Murrell and Airrion Love are the remaining original members of The Stylistics.  Friends since junior high school, Herb and Airrion have managed to keep their institution of 70’s music alive. 

It was thought to be the end of the Stylistics following the departure of their original lead singer, but as in life the show must go on!

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
The Stylistics
Parr Hall
Wednesday 27 November 2013 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £22.50
01925 442345

Kepow! Theatre Company presents Seven Ages

Sell out tours of 10 countries, on 4 continents, including: New Zealand, Canada, Norway and America. Standing ovation and 5 star reviews at the Edinburgh Festival and in London’s West End.

Essentially a comedy – with touching moments in it – Seven Ages explores the idea that we go through seven stages in life. From infancy – through love and wisdom – to growing old disgracefully.

Fresh from a sell-out world tour, Seven Ages has been seen at over 400 venues across the UK and now it comes to Pyramid as part of Warrington Contemporary Arts Festival 2013. It received 5 star reviews at the Edinburgh Festival before transferring to London, where it received a standing ovation on its opening and closing nights!

Created and starring Kevin Tomlinson (winner of the Sunday Times Playwright Award) and Abi Hood (ITV’s The Bill), Seven Ages has been praised for its wonderful combination of comedy, drama and pathos, as it explores two of the most important questions one can ever ask oneself: Why am I here? and What’s important in my life? A truly unique show, that makes one re-assess one’s priorities in life, whilst simultaneously making you laugh. Suitable for 6-106 year olds. But not 107 year olds.

KEPOW! are now recognised as one of the UK’s leading touring theatre companies and their founder – Kevin Tomlinson – is one of the UK’s top, comic improvisers. His career took off In 1999, when he performed alongside the cast of Whose Line Is It Anyway? and Hollywood actor Jonathan Pryce at the famous Hackney Empire, in a Charity Comedy Show. Since then his improvisation shows have toured to ten countries abroad. Most recently, Hong Kong, where 300 tickets were sold, within 48 hours of the show going on sale!

Get your tickets now for this truly unique show that makes you reassess your priorities in life whilst simultaneously making you laugh.

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Kepow! Theatre Company presents Seven Ages
Thursday 21 November 2013 – 7.30pm
Tickets: £10/12
01925 442345



Manchester’s Favourite Comedian Comes to Warrington

One of Manchester’s finest comedians, Justin Moorhouse, will be performing at Pyramid on Saturday 9 November.

Fresh from appearances on Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Road Show and 8 Out of 10 Cats, Moorhouse promises a night full of laughs in an intimate venue.

He started his career playing Manchester’s comedy clubs and got his big break after performing at the city’s Comedy Store which landed him a role in Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights.

You might remember him with that tiger face playing Young Kenny in Phoenix Nights. You might have seen him doing stand-up on your television, his Warrington show will be a lot like that, but more of it and in 3D.

Justin’s even dipped his fingers into the world of radio, presenting a show on Manchester’s Key 103 and writing his own sitcom for BBC Radio 4.

Expect stories about Owls, Family Fun Days, and Justin’s dog. He thinks she’s great. He’ll probably also moan about his kids, only joking of course, they’re great too.

It’s all new for 2013 and it’s happening at Warrington’s Pyramid but get your tickets quick, this show is nearly sold out!

‘Moorhouse charms the pants off the crowd’  Sunday Times
‘Easily my favourite comedian’  Jimmy Carr

Pyramid & Parr Hall Listings Information
Justin Moorhouse
Saturday 9 November, 7.30pm
01925 442345

World Cup holders dancing to a Warrington tune

They are famous the world over for their haka but the dancing will have a decidedly Warrington flavour when New Zealand begin their defence of the Rugby League World Cup trophy with a match against Samoa at The Halliwell Jones Stadium on Sunday (October 27, 6.00pm).

Before the world champions and Samoa take to the field, over 500 Warrington dancers ranging from eight to 84 years of age will welcome them to the town with an exciting and memorable dance extravaganza.

The arrival of the 14-nation Rugby League World Cup 2013 in Warrington will be celebrated with the ‘March to the Match’ from the town centre to The Halliwell Jones Stadium, a parade that features the ‘Window On Warrington’ dance project.

Window On Warrington is a joint enterprise between Culture Warrington and the Warrington Wolves Charitable Foundation, organised by Janey Moran and Leah Biddle and which celebrates the cultures of Samoa and Warrington.
A number of dance groups from in and around Warrington will take part, including Shootin’ Stars Dance Academy and Angel Dance Academy.

Becky Williams, the owner of Shootin’ Stars, said: “We had our final dress rehearsal this week. We’re taking 10 dancers aged 13 and above, and our performance will be in conjunction with the work Leah and Janey have done.”

The project will also feature children from Wolf Print, an arts club set up by Leah Biddle, the Arts Education and Young People Manager at the Warrington Wolves Foundation to give children with disabilities and behavioural issues the chance to participate in the World Cup.

Leah said: “I set up Wolf Print just over three years ago. It’s run every week and is attended by children of varying disabilities including Down’s Syndrome and Cerebral Palsy.

“We help children develop a number of skills. For example we help develop their flexibility, mobility and coordination whilst offering performance opportunities such as this one.

“We’ll be taking 10 children to the performance aged five upwards and they’ll be taking part in one of the sections which is about the fantastical and Samoan myths and that will incorporate an ‘Alice In Wonderland’ theme.”

The project has been supported by Arts Council England, who have provided the funding with additional backing coming from Warrington Borough Council.
Window On Warrington is not the only dance performance to be featured; Grand Visionary Solutions will lead another 150 dancers taking part in the pre-match routine.

The organisation has teamed up with Jeanefer Jean-Charles, who led the dance at the London 2012 Opening Ceremony.

Jeanefer said: “I was approached by GVS and they basically gave me a blank canvas to create what I wanted. “The team I have who helped plan the choreography have been visiting various dance groups from the hosting regions.

“They work with four or five groups who then come together and see that they’ve all been working on the same routine and can perform it together on a bigger scale.”

Grand Visionary Solutions’ Gwen van Spijk said: “We approached Jeanefer based on her experience to date – not only her work as one of the mass Movement Directors for the Olympic Opening Ceremony but other large scale and celebratory projects that she has done.

“The RLWC2013 Dance Programme will provide a wonderful opportunity for communities across England, Wales and beyond, to celebrate Dance and make it a key element of the next major sporting event to be held in the UK.”

There will also be spectacular dance performances at the RLWC2013 opening ceremony at Cardiff on Saturday and throughout the 14-nation tournament as part of a £1m project which is supported by Arts Council England through their Grants for the Arts programme, Wooden Spoon, the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Arts Council of Wales and the Welsh Government.

Tickets for New Zealand v Samoa at The Halliwell Jones Stadium on Sunday October 27 (6.00pm) can be purchased by visiting www.rlwc2013.com/tickets or by calling the 24-hour Ticket Hotline on 0844 847 2013. Anyone who purchases a ticket for New Zealand v Samoa is eligible to get a ticket for the RLWC2013 quarter-final at the Halliwell Jones Stadium Sunday November 17 for half price.