Jane Brocket’s Grand Provincial Tour of Preston

19 May 2015

New guidebook on sale at the Harris Museum & Art Gallery from Thursday 14th May
Book launch and photo opportunity 13 May 5.30pm
Author Jane Brocket will be available for photos with the Mayor of Preston,  Cllr Nicholas Pomfret and John Gillmore, Radio Lancashire

A beautifully illustrated new guide to the best of Preston is published this week.  By author, blogger and lover of live beyond the capital, Jane Brocket, the guide will help visitors discover Preston’s art and architecture, as well as the best walks, bookshops, markets, cafés, coffee shop and parks.

Inspired by the Grand Tours undertaken by wealthy young gentlemen two hundred years ago, A Grand Provincial Tour is a less extravagant, modern-day journey around the provincial towns and cities of Britain to discover and appreciate the artistic, architectural and cultural highlights and treasures on offer – starting with Preston.

The Preston guide also includes highlights of Blackburn, Southport, Morecambe and Carnforth.  Whether visitors are in Lancashire for a few hours or a few days, with this Brocket in their pocket they will be able to make the very most of their time. 

Author Jane Brocket says, “I came to Preston for the Harris Museum & Art Gallery and Preston Bus Station, but I found so much more.  And the more I discovered, the more I was convinced that it was time Preston had its own guide to celebrate what makes it special and worth visiting.  I’ve visited Preston several times now, and each time I’ve found more to like, more to include in my book, and more excuses to eat parched peas and pies.  When I first made the Preston guide available as a download via my blog, I was completely taken aback and delighted by the local support it received.  I soon realised it deserved to become a printed book.”

Cllr Veronica Afrin, Cabinet Member for Culture & Leisure Services; Preston City Council says, “We are delighted to be launching this new Preston guidebook at the Harris Museum & Art Gallery.  Jane has picked out some of the wonderful places we have here in the city, from buildings like Miller Arcade and St.Walburge’s Church, to our markets and parks, and I am sure it will open many people’s eyes to what we have to offer.”

The Grand Provincial Tour of Preston will be available from the Harris Museum & Art Gallery shop from 14th May, priced £7.99 (tel: 01772 905414 for mail order).  Trade enquiries should be made to Yarnstorm Press through [email protected]

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All media enquiries to:

Hilary Machell, Business Development & Fundraising Manager, 01772 903619/
07866 197725 h.machell @preston.gov.uk

About the Author:
Jane Brocket grew up in Stockport and is a passionate advocate of provincial life, culture, galleries, and architecture. Jane has been writing about and commenting on art, architecture, culture and travel on her well-known blog Yarnstorm for nine years, and has gained a large number of devoted readers and followers who use her reliable, eclectic and wide-ranging reviews and recommendations (trial blog posts elicited a great deal of interest). Her first book, The Gentle Art of Domesticity, included a chapter on travel. She has also written for The Guardian on culture and cakes, and for the Telegraph on travel. She is the author of more than fifteen books on a variety of cultural and creative themes, many of which are illustrated with her own photographs.

About the Grand Provincial Tour series:
Although the starting and focal point of each journey is a town or city with a fine, outstanding art gallery that houses an interesting or important collection, this is not simply a guide to provincial art galleries. Instead the book looks at the wider cultural context, and the result is a personal, eclectic guide that takes the pulse of public cultural life outside London. It is written for the reader-tourist who plans, or finds herself with, a day or a few hours in one of our major towns or cities, and wants to know what is worth visiting in order to discover the highlights, character, and history of the place.
Undertaken as a series of 25-30 individual visits by train rather than a costly and impractical single journey, A Grand Provincial Tour is written by someone who firmly believes that there is plenty of rich, fascinating culture beyond London – and not just in the most affluent parts of the country. Indeed, she finds that even the most apparently ugly and written-off town has a store of treasures and pleasures worthy of serious consideration and appreciation.
The guide looks at the cultural riches and gems on offer to the public, free of charge wherever possible, in places with proud traditions, amazing collectors, rich benefactors, genius architects, talented locals, generous and energetic donors and patrons, and proves that Britain has tremendous amounts to interest, amuse, surprise if you take the time to look beyond the obvious. To qualify for inclusion, a town or city must have an important art gallery, be accessible by train, and provide enough cultural sustenance for a few hours or a whole day in the form of noteworthy architecture, a major church or cathedral, bookshops, bakeries and cafes, a lido or swimming pool where possible, interesting walks, green spaces and gardens, and local detail.

About the Harris Museum & Art Gallery:

The Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston, is one of the leading museums in the North West and features contemporary art, fine art, decorative art and historic collections of national significance.  The Harris is a major tourist attraction, welcoming over 220,000 visitors per year.

Located in the heart of Preston in a stunning Grade 1 listed building, it hosts a wide range of exhibitions and events.  The museum shop stocks a range of gifts for adults and children based on the museum’s collections and souvenirs relating to Preston.

W: harrismuseum.org.uk
Facebook: HarrisMuseumAndArtGallery
Twitter: @Harrispreston

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