A NEW festival celebrating Chester’s rich history of trades, guilds and shopping will take place over 11 days next month.
Chester Performs, organisers of Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre and Chester Literature Festival, have announced Rogues’ Galleries will take place between March 14-24.
Empty city centre shop units will be reopened as artist studios, with people able to explore a range of performances, installations and workshops.
Amber Knipe, programme manager for Chester Performs, said: “Chester has a long and rich history as a ‘shopping city’ and this project sets out to celebrate the sense of independence and invention at the heart of Chester’s businesses, trades and guilds.
“The relevance of the project is obvious to Chester – the city has some of the oldest shopping streets in the country.
“Rogues’ Galleries celebrates the independence of thought and artistry that make up our communities.
“It will use closed high street shop locations and will to some extent address the struggles our high streets have experienced in recent years.
“Audiences will be invited to explore these themes with us as we question what it is to buy and sell on the high street today.”
Highlights include Chester’s first pop cartoon launderette ‘Florence and her Machines’, which pays homage to retro-coin operated launderettes from the past and performance artist Anoushka Athique recreating a haberdashery, where she will repair items in exchange for stories.
The event will also feature a programme of short films and workshops, including the return of the region’s original 48 Hour Film Challenge, Blogging for Beginners and Digital Marketing for Creatives workshops.
Festival venues will be open from 11am-6pm on Monday to Saturday and from noon-4pm on Sunday.
There will be late night opening until 8pm on Thursday, March 14.
For full details go to www.roguesgalleries. co.uk