Chester news round special April edition

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New era for Chicoland
  • Note: The first story is an April Fool
  • Chester institution Chicoland are to rebrand as “Chic-o-like” and convert to a fully vegan menu. The Boughton based business has been a favourite for many at the end of a night on the town and was recently advertised as for sale on Facebook . Now the popular takeaway are joining the meat free revolution with Chester becoming increasingly known for its fine vegan dining scene. The new menu has been designed in partnership with the University’s NoWFood centre and will include chicken style combo 3 and cheese substitute on chips. Details are expected to be revealed soon, with the revolutionary change set to be a huge hit with the late night crowds.
  • Chester BID together with solicitors, Cullimore Dutton, through the ‘Professionals in Partnership’ network, are set to launch a campaign to attract, retain and develop Chester’s professionals and to help the city embrace a collaborative approach to learning & development within the business community, establishing Chester as the go to city for professionals. The new scheme would see city firms hosting employees from other sectors, who would shadow a relevant team member to facilitate a well-rounded learning experience across the professional services. Andy Wright, managing director, Cullimore Dutton explained: ‘Although Chester has a fantastically vibrant business community, we face challenges attracting and retaining staff. In addition, the post pandemic hybrid working model offers greater opportunities for Chester professionals to join firms in larger cities without necessarily needing to relocate.’ He added: ‘This collaborative approach and pooling of knowledge will give our employees the chance to experience different corporate cultures and network with other professionals. An estate agent could spend time with a residential conveyancing team, a land agent may shadow an architect, or an accountant could spend time with a financial adviser.’ If this collaborative approach was embraced across the city, I truly believe we could help Chester to become the city of choice for professionals.’ The organisers are asking business leaders across the city to join a dinner at Chez Jules to discuss how to turn this collaborative approach into a formalised city plan across professional services. Nick Hodson, board member at Chester BID said: ‘Our advantage over larger cities, is the sense of community our businesses share. This new venture will further ensure that all Chester Professionals feel supported to become the best businessperson they can be and give them a sense of belonging, community, and a feeling of value.’ To register interest in the scheme please e-mail
The current records office
  • Cheshire West and Chester Council’s Cabinet is supporting the submission of a second stage application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) for the delivery of ‘Cheshire’s archives: a story shared’ project. The Archives and Local Studies Service is a shared service with Cheshire East Council, currently based at the Cheshire Record Office in Duke Street, Chester. The relocated service will see two new history centres being established in Chester and Crewe, alongside improved service delivery in libraries, extended online services and a more extensive activity and event programme. The new archives centre in Chester will be located at the site of the former Enterprise Centre on Lightfoot Street, Hoole. The submission later this year will follow the completion of planned consultations, further design work and business/cost plans to the NLHF based on a grant application of £4.455m. The Council has set aside funding of £10 million in its 2022-2026 capital programme, this is being matched by the same amount from Cheshire East Council. The total project cost is estimated to be £26.459 million. The project has been piloting new digital activities and tools for engaging more people, and a more diverse range of people, with archives. The Archives team have developed online exhibitions for LGBT History Month and Black History Month, live. Web-based training for community history groups. An online training programme for library staff to help them develop their knowledge about the local history collections in their libraries and to support people who visit libraries to research family and local history. Over the last 12 months the Archives service has been speaking to hundreds of people across Cheshire to gather their views about the proposed new service, through online surveys, workshops and at in person events. These events have included a day at Chester Market to celebrate Browns of Chester, in partnership with West Cheshire Museums and the University of Chester. Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council said: “Chester has hosted the archive services for over seventy years, but our current location is no longer able to meet the expectation and requirements of the many people who access this service. The exciting plans aim to transform access to the collections and ensure their preservation for future generations.”
  • Opening on Saturday 9th April is the Chester branch of Geek Retreat in the former Betfred unit on Watergate street. With branches in Northwich and Liverpool, Chester is the latest part of the expanding business. The owners say: “If you’re looking for an alternative place to eat , meet, trade and play games then you’ve found your second home as part of our Geek Retreat Chester family”. The opening weekend will see two cosplay days . Saturday 9th April (10 -7) is Individual Cosplay Characters. Sunday 10th April (11-7) is couples and groups cosplay characters. “Our opening weekend is all about bringing people together to build our gaming community and celebrate all things geeky. Come and see what we are all about, check out our amazing menu and milkshakes, meet like minded people and have a nosey round your new alternative gaming cafe on the high street! “
  • Also on Saturday 9th is the Cheshire Print Fair at the Cathedral (10-4.30) Free to enter the event offers affordable and unique prints/cards/gifts etc from over 30 local artists. In the Cathedral’s unique environment, music will be supplied by  @rare_vitamin_records and visitors can try their hand at making letterpress prints with @chester.makersspace . A screenprint workshop will also take place at Storyhouse.Early birds have a chance of a golden ticket and a free tote bag filled . For full details see the facebook page :
  • What will the world look like in 25 years’ time? That’s the question being asked in an exciting new competition from Cheshire Museums and Libraries.  The art and writing competition is open for young people aged between 4 and 16. Festival for the Future is a month-long celebration of sustainability and climate change across west Cheshire, beginning July 2022. Winning entries will be featured in this summer’s exhibition about plastic pollution and its impact on the environment at the Grosvenor Museum. Councillor Louise Gittins said: “We’re looking for creative ways to imagine how the world will look in 25 years’ time. This could be a drawing, painting, writing, poetry, collage, let your imagination run wild, your entry can take any form as long as it fits on one side of A4. Not only will the winning entries in each age category get family tickets to visit Chester Zoo, but the best entries will also be displayed in the Grosvenor Museum and made into an eBook by our libraries for” 

The closing date for entries is 4 June.  There are two age groups primary schools 4 to 11-year-olds and high schools 11 to 16-year-olds. The judges will be looking for creative responses that engage with the ideas of plastic pollution and climate change. For terms and conditions and entry information, visit:  Entries can be handed in at any Cheshire West and Chester public library, posted to Festival for the Future, Grosvenor Museum, 27 Grosvenor Street, Chester, CH1 2DD, or emailed to:

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