Preston set to be ‘full of theatre and music’ as Lancashire Encounter culture festival returns

Posted on - 15th September, 2021 - 11:38am | Author - | Posted in - Arts, City Centre, Comedy, Flag Market, Kid's stuff, Music, Preston buildings & attractions, Preston City Centre, Preston Locations, Preston News, Things to Do in and around Preston, What's On in Preston
Out of the Deep Blue – Autin Dance Company

Preston residents will this weekend enjoy a programme of events as a popular festival arrives in the city centre.


The Lancashire Encounter arts and culture festival has now returned following a hiatus brought about by the pandemic.

Kicking off on Friday 17 September and running to Saturday 2 October, Encounter celebrates Lancashire’s rich and diverse cultural offer and sees the city brought to life with an exciting programme of contemporary and community arts from across the county.

Read more: Runners prepare for City of Preston 10k race as countdown begins

A performance at Lancashire Encounter Pic: Michael Porter Photography
A performance at Lancashire Encounter Pic: Michael Porter Photography

Councillor Peter Kelly, Cabinet member for culture and arts at Preston City Council, said: “It’s hard to believe we’re back, but we are, and I can’t wait to see the city full of theatre and music again. We all deserve to have a great time!

“There’s definitely something for everyone, so take a look at the programme online and plan your visit. Extending the festival to two full weeks means we can showcase even more great talent as events and shows make a welcome return to the city.”

Funded by Arts Council England and Preston City Council, the festival showcases the city’s long history of hosting successful cultural events and includes performances, exhibitions, family-friendly activities and creative commissions, accessible to all age groups.

Read more: Where to go pumpkin picking in and around Preston this Autumn

The Red Canopies were the main attraction of last year's Lancashire Encounter Pic: Tony Worrall
The red canopies were the main attraction at a previous Lancashire Encounter Pic: Tony Worrall

Highlights include a family picnic in Winckley Square, a dance piece documenting the Preston story of Dick Kerr’s Ladies, and a 4-metre tall puppet telling a story of division, hope and belonging.

Also included are HOWL, a film created by 100 people howling at Preston bus station, two visual arts exhibitions that take their inspiration from the working of cotton, and several other newly commissioned art pieces.

The festival will take place at locations across Preston, including the Flag Market, the Harris, the Bus Station, the MET, and Preston’s newest venue – the Mobile Event Tent.

Read more: Penwortham artist’s uplifting paintings catch the eye of national celebrities

The Long Walk Chinese Orchestra playing at Lancashire Encounter

All events are free to attend (except the Salsa Party), and social distancing and ventilation have been considered. Many of the indoor events have limited spaces, so booking in advance is recommended.

For more information and to book, visit –

Read moreSee the latest Preston news and headlines

Will you be going to the festival? Let us know in the comments below

Preston in pictures Sunny DaysTelephone Boxes, Market Street, PrestonMarket Street PrestonPintxos, PrestonGrowler 37610Lane Ends, PrestonLost RailwayFish & Chips View more Advertisement Subscribe to the newsletter

Sign up below to receive Blog Preston's weekly newsletter. It wings its way into inboxes every Sunday rounding up our best content from the last week and a look ahead to what's happening.

Advertisement News by location

Find news by location, select an area of your choice to be kept up to date with the latest goings on.

Advertisement Categories

Find news by category, select an category of your choice to be kept up to date with the latest goings on.