Carriage Shed, the new public space linking the train station to the emerging business quarter, the canal and beyond was officially launched last night by council leader Sam Dixon. The area has been transformed and made accessible , with a vision of creating a new outdoor events space for the city, with a range of activities planned including markets, street food and theatre performances.
The council has invested over £1.5 million in the development, with matching funds of over £600,000 from the European Development Fund to deliver the improvements. The site was formerly a car park and an degrading and unused former train shed. In a speech to invited guests, Cllr Dixon said that Chester had a new “public open space and a high quality entrance from the station to our new business quarter. Its a fantastic new covered event space. Importantly its a place for the public to dwell, as they’re coming into the city to meet , or visit. Its also, for the residents that I represent a vastly improved link between the station and the canal corridor leading to Boughton. ”
“We now have a new car park, a public realm, and the start of a new business quarter which will attract jobs and investment to Chester city centre. Its a public space and we want to encourage you to use it. We’re working with Capital properties to manage the space, we’ll be launching a full programme of events later in the year.”
Artist Cherry Chung has produced an art installation called “Passage through time” for the launch and it will be on display for the next month. Cherry’s work consisting of willow weavings, is inspired by the old carriages that would have been kept here. She began willow weaving in 1996 and she works across the north west undertaking commissions and workshops in willow weaving and sculpture. Cherry said that when she was first approached she found the juxtaposition of the old and the new being brought together really interesting
” I came up of the idea linked to locomotion, and the title Passage through time , not only relates to people’s physical passage through the space, but the modernisation of the carriage shed through time as well. ”
Catherine Flannagan of Capital Properties , championed Carriage Shed as “Chester’s newest social destination.” On Friday 1st April there will be a street food event taking place 12-2, and on Saturday a family fun day will take place 11-4. There will be craft workshops with Cherry Chung, street food and live entertainment. Dee 106.3 will be in attendance. “The aim is to bring Chester back to the people of Chester and get them excited about the new venue. In the summer our intentions are to have street markets, entertainment, exhibitions. ” said Catherine.
Carriage Shed is a fantastic new open space, taking on a derelict space and updating it whilst maintaining its historic appeal. Great to see this regeneration and hopefully it will create a buzz with the range of activities on offer.
For more info see the Carriage Shed website : http://www.carriageshed.co.uk/
@CarriageShed, Facebook: /CarriageShed and on Instagram: @CarriageShed for more information.