Stephen to Avenham began life as a project commissioned by the Preston Guild 2012 festival
Dutch location theatre company, PeerGroup worked with local people in Preston and the Forest of Bowland to research and tell stories embedded in the landscape and to use the landscape to tell new stories. Daily life, historical and personal stories combine to create a new way of seeing the area.
They worked in collaboration with Spot On, Lancashire’s rural touring network (run by Blackburn -based company Culturapedia) who were the local producers and project managers.
After creating shows in Gisburn Forest in August 2012, PeerGroup travelled down the river Hodder to the City of Preston. The performances in Gisburn was on the land belonging to the local farm, Stephen Park and the project in the urban Avenham Park can be seen as a diptych, connected by the Hodder and Ribble.
Countryside and city exist next to each other but also complete each other, and so do the two parts of “From Stephen to Avenham”
Since then, the companies have retained connections with the Bowland area, and have developed a partnership with Yorkshire-based Blaize Theatre who continued the Guild legacy in August 2013 with the Gisburn Forest Guy.
In 2014, PeerGroup return with a new project, Memories for the Future, commissioned by the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the area’s designation.
This site tells the whole the story, from 2012 to present date.