Chester’s empty business unit to be transformed into creative pop-up attraction

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AN empty retail unit in downtown Chester will be transformed into a pioneering pop-up tourist attraction in time for the October holidays.

Chester Race Company has agreed to donate 22 Bridge Street, formerly the Pro-cook store, which will soon feature some of the county’s top performers, storytellers and performers.

Destination Chester, a network of the city’s tourism partners, is working with Storyhouse and Wild Rumpus to create a one-of-a-kind tourist attraction.

It is part of the “Chester Designed By Nature” campaign, the fruit of the Destination Chester partnership.

Named The Nest, it’s slated to launch for the October holidays and will feature lantern-making, storytelling and art workshops for families. After the mid-session, the space will host conferences, workshops and events aimed at adults, young adults and families alike.

Jen McAndrew, Destination Chester Project Manager, said: “We are delighted with the support from Race Company.

“It’s this kind of initiative – using empty top-notch retail spaces – that will help us overcome the challenges of the pandemic.

“The Nest is just the start of the year’s program. We’re sure it will increase footfall in the city, support businesses and grow Chester’s stature, taking a creative approach to tourism that echoes the city’s wonderfully independent spirit. ”

The nest is expected to be designed by Rachel Shore of Wild Rumpus, the award-winning events company behind the ‘Just So’ Festival and the Chester Zoo Lantern Parade. It will be designed in a sustainable manner, with a preference for recycled and upcycled materials.

The Chester Race Company is also part of the Destination Chester network and is donating the premises for the new attraction until the end of November.

Marco Garavello, Chief Financial Officer of Chester Race Company, said: “We are thrilled to be a part of this. The network was designed so that we can all work together to create more buzz around the city. Hopefully the brilliant nature of our Bridge Street location will increase traffic in the city and generate interest in this great project. ”

Councilor Richard Beacham, Cheshire West and Chester Council, Cabinet Member for Inclusive Economy and Regeneration said: “Destination Chester is a truly exciting collaborative network, working hard for the good of the city.

“This ‘one city’ approach helped Chester win this year’s ‘Resort City of the Year’ award, and the group of dedicated network members are committed to ensuring that Chester continues to develop unique experiences. and original to maintain our position as regional, national and international visitor destination. ”

The Nest is funded by the ERDF Welcome Back Fund which is managed by Marketing Cheshire on behalf of Destination Chester and Cheshire West and Chester Council.

Nicola Said, Commercial Director of Marketing Cheshire, said: “Destination Chester partners have come together to bring people back to Chester and present it as a great place to visit, building on its status as a city of the Staycation Year.

“The Nest is a great example of how we are working together to achieve this, providing a perfect space for families to come to town and enjoy a range of activities, adding to the many fantastic opportunities available to people visiting. the city. ”

For more information on The Nest and other upcoming events in the city center, www.visitcher.co.uk and www.storyhouse.com.

The Nest will launch on October 23 and will be open every day during the mid-session from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.


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