Birley Art Studios opens in former council offices in city centre

Posted on - 24th September, 2014 - 8:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Arts, Preston City Centre, UCLan
UCLan graduates outside the Birley Studios

UCLan graduates outside the Birley Studios

Four university graduates have teamed up to open a new art studio in Preston.


The art graduates from the University of Central Lancashire have taken over the former council offices on Birley Street.

The Birley Art Studios and project space opened on Thursday and is looking for artists to get involved and use the space.

It can house up to 15 affordable studio spaces.

Steph Fletcher, a fine art graduate, is one of the team behind the studios.

She said: “Although there are already a few great options for artists to exhibit in Preston, such as Oxheys Mill Studios and the Harris Stairway, we felt that Preston could still benefit from more in the way of professional art space and opportunities.

“We want to keep creativity in Preston and encourage local artists to share their work with the community. Essentially this project is about starting a space with our own identity, sharing contemporary and visual art by emerging artists and recent graduates. We would love to hear from artists, makers, writers and creatives from the area who might want to get involved and help grow our creative network.”

Funding for the project comes from the UCLan Together Award, which backs student and graduate projects which benefit the university and wider community.

Preston City Council’s cabinet member for culture and leisure, Veronica Afrin, opened the studios on Thursday.

She said: “This is a wonderful project and I’m so pleased we could accommodate it in the city centre.

“It’s very important that we retain the skills and creativity of young people studying at the University and have these opportunities so they can stay in Preston, helping the city to thrive.”

Anyone interested in using the studio should email

Will you be visiting the Birley Studios? What do you think of the idea? Let us know in the comments below

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