The Preston Guild is a tradition dating back to 1179 and for the first time in 2012 the public will have to chance to recognise those people who do something for the community in the city.Advertisement
Guild organisers will make history by allowing the city to put forward those people who contribute to life in Preston to become an Honorary Burgess.
The Honorary Burgess is a special status that is record on the Guild rolls and can be passed down to sons and daughters. Previous mayors, Guild officials and Sir Tom Finney have all had the award.
Organisers hope allowing 20 people from all walks of life onto the scrolls will see a more representative snap shot of the community to be taken.
Nomination forms are available by calling 01772903 629 or logging on to the Preston Guild website.
Guild director Stella Hall also called for more people to join the Guild Scrolls, messages of friendship and celebrations of the city from all over the world.
The Preston Scrolls of Friendship date back to 1952 and allow ex-pats to send their best wishes from all over the world.
In 2012 the scrolls join the digital age as you can log on and leave your video, photo or written message online at a dedicated website.
Leader of Preston City Council Peter Rankin said: “We’re very pleased with how Preston Guild has been received so far and have had lots of messages, photos and images posted on our Guild Scrolls website and social media channels.
“Today is an exciting milestone for the next Preston Guild. The excitement building up to 2012 is palpable and we know that people can’t wait for find out what’s happening next year. We hope that today’s announcement has whet people’s appetite for the big announcement in the New Year.”
A host of different events will take place throughout the Guild Year, culminating in a series of four processions and a ten day festival in Avenham and Miller Park.
Stella Hall said each procession was expected to attract over 100,000 and the city was ready for the year ahead.
She said: “Guild 2012 has been a long time in the planning and we are so excited that it is nearly here.
“Next year will be the first Guild since Preston became a city and we have made every effort to ensure that elements of the events programme will reach people of all ages, races and cultural backgrounds.
“Preston Guild 2012 will have something for everybody and we can’t wait to share it with the communities of Preston, and beyond.”
Earlier this week it was revealed a set piece event for the Guild would be a live BBC drama re-telling the Passion story, called the Preston Passion.
Guild organisers want to see local people involved in the story, as it takes place across the city throughout Good Friday.
More big Guild events are set to be announced in the New Year and full information about all the events and how to get involved is on the Guild website.
Image credit to the Preston Digital Archive, a fantastic online resource of historic photos about the city
What do you think about the Guild announcements? Have you sent in a Guild scroll? Let us know your views in the comments below