Once Every Preston Guild


September 2, 2012 by benmblackman

Stella Hall and her Guild Team, thousands of Volunteers, Artists, Performers & Participants should take a bow – and they’ve only just got started.

When I saw the programme for the Preston Guild earlier this year I was excited by how amazing it looked. Hall has pulled off a master stroke of programming by delivering a diverse and eclectic mix ensuring something for everyone.

Music on deckchairs

Young, old, boy or girl, you’ll find something to amuse your passions. Music, art, fun, frolics, crafts, sport, there is so much more. There are things I know I’d like to see myself, some I’d want to see with the family, lots we can all actually take part in together. The programme is a triumph of accessibility for all to enjoy (something so often lacking in ‘artistic’ festivals). There are ticketed events costing a few bob (mostly for worldwide renowned acts you won’t see many times in England let alone Preston) but 90% of the programme for the entire Guild year is free. How great is that?

Already BBC1 have been in town for the Preston Passion back in Easter. Perhaps not everybody’s cup of tea but what a coup and if that wasn’t your passion, then this weekend has been for so many.

Guild Festival Week

As tradition would have, the Guild Festival Week began proper on Saturday 1st September and what a way to start. A weekend of the Vintage and Square Food Festivals have blown me away.

Tunaversity Challenge

Mrs B has had a role to play in the Guild, so has been busy working all weekend, leaving me and the Calpol Kid keen to get in, show some support and see the lady in our life at snatched moments here and there.

We clocked up 12 hours over Saturday and Sunday and didn’t we have a ball? None of the activities or events we took part in cost a penny. They were all priceless. The creativity, imagination and memories it has inspired in me (aged 33) and her (aged 3.5) will last forever. I cannot bestow more praise than that.

There was too much to do, too much to see, and certainly too much to write about here – what more can I say?

A magical world awaits.

Actually, you can read about what we got up to here – Preston Guild – Vintage and Square Food Festival(s)

It was a breath of fresh air. A return to the good old days. Not a computer or videogame in sight. Rather, exceptional food, great entertainment, delighted people and wonderful memories.

Over the days we bumped in to friends, made some new ones, chatted to colleagues, laughed with policemen and security. A special mention should go to the security actually, they added to proceedings instead of taking away (as so often the heavy handed firms do). Always happy to help and use their discretion as required, they assisted as many people as the volunteers from what I experienced. A credit to their trade and the Festival as a whole.


The biggest compliment I can give the opening weekend is that it didn’t seem like Preston (or at least not the one I know). This is a good thing. By this I mean that I could have been anywhere in the world. I felt like I was on holiday. Perhaps one legacy from this years Guild should be to ensure it is no longer ‘once in a Preston Guild’ that things like this happen in the city. Preston desperately needs to build on these huge successes and ensure repeats happen more regularly.

Learning the Charleston

Get Involved

You can find out more information about the rest of the Preston Guild Events here:

Preston Guild Website

Preston Guild – What’s On

Read about what we got up – Preston Guild – Vintage and Square Food Festival(s)


One thought on “Once Every Preston Guild

  1. […] you haven’t read my last blog Once in a Preston Guild then you should do. It sets this one […]

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