The man who took on running Preston’s Guild Hall is leaving.Advertisement
Richard Simkin became general manager of the venue when Lancashire multi-millionaire Simon Rigby took on the building in 2014.
Mr Simkin leaves on Friday (30 November) for an undisclosed commercial role at a Lancashire football club.
He said: “I feel like I’ve been part of the furniture for Preston for six years and spearheaded the revitalisation of the Guild Hall, as well as plans for the Guild Tower.
“Creating LeVel has been a great achievement too.
“I think the Guild Hall and what’s been happening has been a catalyst for growth in the city centre that’s been seen in recent years.”
Mr Simkin has overseen bringing the panto at the Guild Hall back-in-house, and attracting televised snooker, boxing and darts to the venue.
He said: “I’m also very proud we’ve been able to build an in-house live music promotions arm called LiVE.
“And Bongo’s Bingo coming to Preston has definitely been a big hit too!”
Long-time assistant to Mr Rigby Lisa Mathew is due to take on the running of the venue as operations director.
Mr Simkin said: “Preston will always be in my heart and I hope to be back one day – maybe to turn on the Christmas lights, who knows?
“I will always be in Simon’s debt for the opportunities he’s given me. I love the guy.”
Simon Rigby said: “Richard has worked with us through establishing us as major players in Preston via Preston North End.
“This has been consolidated by the work done on Preston Guild Hall which Richard has led through its development phase.
“As this is now completed we wish Richard well in his new role. He is a huge football fan so looks like a marriage made in heaven to me.”
Read more: See what’s on in Preston
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