The Chester blog

Chester Songwriters live fundraiser for Soul Kitchen : Some of Chester’s most talented songwriters and singers will be performing on the performance area at the Chester Supertrees roundabout to raise money for Soul Kitchen. Soul Kitchen is a voluntary organisation that started operating at this roundabout over 5 years ago. It now provides regular hot food and support to people suffering from food poverty, homelessness and loneliness. The event runs from 12 until 3pm, all welcome. Helen Anthony MBE commented : ” We are delighted that Chester Songwriters and the Supertrees project are putting on this event to support our work. We have been incredibly busy in the last year and desperately need funds to continue operating and develop our services. Please come along on Saturday to support this great initiative.” Further details https://www.inyourarea.co.uk/news/chester-songwriters-stage-live-event-to-raise-funds-for-soul-kitchen/?fbclid=IwAR0NU5BHwHLMcWxlCHuRpv9WaDjjZTfevFnB2qN-nlTSa8jBId4irHj3P6w

Rough timings for the artists as follows :

12.00-12.15 Bransby
12.20- 12.35 Stewart Lever
12.40- 12.55 Pete Thompson
1.00 -1.15 Andy Hignett
1.20- 1.35 Mark Dennis
1.40-1.55 Paul Stevenson
2.00- 2.15 Chris Howarth
2.20-2.35 Ken Moodie
2.40 -3.00 Mister Wulf

Music in the roundabout this weekend

Cheshire Archives are running a “document repair shop” from their stall in Chester Market this Saturday from 11- 4. Visitors can drop by at any time in the day to see a live demo from conservators and ask questions about how to store, preserve and repair documents and photos.

Also this Saturday the very popular Makers Market returns to the Carriage Shed just next to the railway station. The event runs from 10- 4. Since opening in 2016 the Carriage Shed the venue has proved a popular event space. The monthly Makers Market showcases award winning local food, drink, art, craft producers and vintage artisans, as well as music, performance, cookery demonstrations and activities.

News from Taste Cheshire: The Chester Food and Drink festival has been running for nearly 20 years at Chester Racecourse, right in the heart of the city.

The pandemic has meant that the 20th event has now been rescheduled 4 times and although we are thrilled to be finally putting it on, we need the support of our amazing Chester community to make sure the event continues for years to come.

Festival Organiser, Briony Wilson said “Chester is a city of food lovers and I think it’s fair to say we are all very proud of it. We know it’s been a rough time for everyone, but this is something positive and fun you can do for yourselves and our community. Please support us by coming along, so we can continue this foodie tradition for future generations”.

Taste Cheshire’s Chester Food and Drink Festival has been an integral part of the city’s calendar and for the first time, the festival this year will take place over August Bank Holiday weekend, 28th – 30th August 2021, taking over the central section of Chester Racecourse.

This year’s event has been specially designed to be nearly entirely outdoors, and with the help of a one way system, and 100+ fantastic exhibitors, they are working to make it as a safe as possible for everyone.

cheffin duties

Highlights of this year include celebrity chefs John Torode, Chris Bavin and Paul Rankin will be on the festival chef demonstration stage.   Distinguished local chefs taking part include Stuart Collins of Docket no.33 who recently appeared on the Great British Menu He will be sharing the stage with local Chef ambassador Brian Mellor.

Curtis Tonge, Head Chef at The Forge, will also be on stage to talk sustainable British food. Darren and Liam from The Faulkner in Hoole, will be showing off their culinary skills and we will be treated to a very special vegan cooking session by plant based Chef Rupert Worden. Special mention too,  for the Bar Lounge Cocktail team, who’ll be flexing their cocktail skills on the demo stage.

Tickets for Chester Food and Drink Festival, sponsored by Taste Cheshire can be found at Chesterfoodanddrink.co.uk

Students from a Chester acting school are stepping out to pursue dreams of stage and film careers after landing places at the country’s leading drama schools. North West End Acting School student Michael Murray has secured a coveted place at the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London. No stranger to the theatre, the former Ellesmere Port Catholic High School student has already tread the boards at Storyhouse, Chester in the highly-acclaimed production of Blue Stockings, staged just before the first UK lockdown to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

Fellow NWEAS student Joseph Stanley, who is currently appearing in the semi-dramatised Sky documentary Liverpool Narcos, will be heading to Bristol Old Vic Theatre School and Charles Harris, of St Helens, will study acting at ArtsEd in London. Olivia Millington, of Flintshire, is taking musical theatre at the Emil Dale Academy in Hertfordshire while Lydia Jones will start at ALRA (The Academy of Live and Recorded Arts) in Manchester in September.

Director of NWEAS Francis Tucker said: “We are so proud of all our students. This past year has been so challenging for them with lessons online or socially distanced in the studio so it is an extra credit to their talent that they have stuck with it and beat stiff competition to get in to some of the UK’s top schools.”

Co-director Lucy Thatcher added: “Auditions for drama school are challenging enough at the best of times but with some taking place online and only the final audition being in person, it has been even tougher.

“We are delighted that Michael, Joseph, Lydia, Charles and Olivia are able to pack their bags, move away from home and begin their exciting acting journey in person! We wish them the very best.”

Current NWEAS students are in for a musical treat in August when award-winning musician, composer and songwriter and Echo and the Bunnymen keyboard player Jez Wing will join physical theatre and acrobalance specialist Becky Illsley in leading a week-long summer workshop alongside director Lucy Thatcher.

A Midsummer Night’s Mash Up, from August 23-27 at Garden Lane Methodist Church, is aimed at teens and young adults. For more information visit http://www.northwestendactingschool.co.uk.

World class bus station

Council asks for views on bus services in the borough: working with bus operators , the council is developing a Bus Service Improvement Plan (BSIP) for the borough, aimed at encouraging more people to travel by bus.

The Government has earmarked £3 billion towards improving bus services throughout England. The BSIP will set out the Council’s ambitions for bus service improvements and help secure a proportion of the funding to benefit people living, working and travelling in Cheshire West and Chester.

The Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Strategic Transport, Councillor Karen Shore said: “We need residents’ views to help us develop the Plan. We want to find out what improvements are needed for local bus services and what would make you use local buses more. We’d like to hear from you whether you travel by bus or not.

“Good bus services help tackle congestion in towns and stop rural communities being cut off.  They’re vital in tackling social exclusion and loneliness and zero emission buses can help cut air pollution and reduce carbon emissions.

“We’re working with all the bus companies in Cheshire West and Chester on an improvement plan and need to know what broad changes to the way bus services operate would encourage people to use them more often.

“We can then use this information to make a bid for Government funding to make the changes happen.

The Council will develop the BSIP by 31 October 2021.   The survey is available on-line until 31st August. Paper copies are also available from the council on 01244 973353.

New business for Brook Street

Those of us in the local music know, say that Chester is gifted with 3 ‘national class’ guitarists and it’s been a very exciting time for one of them. Sam Orr is about to open his own guitar shop this week at 53 Brook St. ‘Sams Guitars‘ will carry on where his excellent FB Page ends, offering advice, support and selling guitars & part exes. “I started the page during the pandemic after Dawsons announced administration, where I had been working for two years. I started offering repairs, sales and all things guitar based.. I’ve also been getting involved with The Mulberry Centre & Spider Project and hope to inspire those less fortunate to pick up the guitar and play for bettwe mental health and well-being” https://www.facebook.com/samsguitars68 Sam has been into playing guitars when he was five, plus worked in renowned Brook St shop ‘Guitar Experience’ with his Dad from 2004 to 2009. The shop had well-known customers including Meatloaf & novelist Iain Banks. He also had a book published in 2009. ‘The Fender Stratocaster’ which traced the guitar’s history and the way in which it developed in countries such as Japan and the UK, as well as its native US. https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fender-Stratocaster-Crowood-Collectors/dp/1847971016 Sam is also in the fantastic Stoner Rock group 1968 which has toured the states and has quite the international fanbase. The band have just dropped their second album ‘Salvation If You Need’ which you can find at https://1968band.bandcamp.com/album/salvation-if-you-need 1968 are hitting The Live Rooms on Friday the 13th of August as part of a massive promotional tour. You can grab a ticket here: https://www.seetickets.com/event/1968/the-live-rooms/1957580

Thanks to Dan Schott

Finally

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