Month long programme considers – What does it take for Newcastle-under-Lyme to become a Green Town?


Green Town is a free programme of events bringing artists, activists, writers, performers and thinkers together to look again at Newcastle-under-Lyme’s streets, shops and public spaces and find easy ways we can all become ‘green’.

It will take place across Appetite’s two ‘Newcastle Common’ spaces – 23 High Street and 12-14 Astley Walk – from 10am to 3pm, Thursday 7 April to Saturday 30 April.

The Green Town exhibition at 23 High Street will look at big environmental issues and how they apply to the town centre. Appetite have specially commissioned artists Jon Paul Green, Francesca Wheeler and Chloe Rickett for the exhibition, which will be complemented by a month-long events programme.

Text Works by Jon Paul Green is a new series of paintings about climate change inspired by the words used by climate activists on protest banners. Jon will also be installing text artworks around the town centre’s streets.

Artists Francesca Wheeler and Chloe Rickett have been commissioned to create a new performance, Green Diagnosis Van, which will send visitors on a journey to find trees around the town centre, alongside a series of playful activities including giving out ‘green prescriptions’ outside the High Street space on Saturday 16 April.

Meanwhile Green Town at Astley Walk will present WILD / LIFE The Pat Callaghan Collection by Danny Callaghan. Pat Callaghan was a lifelong environmental activist and campaigner and here for the first time her archives are shared in this installation. Visitors will be encouraged to dive into the archive and think about ways they can become activists and campaigners. A series of talks will run alongside WILD / LIFE.

Green Town will culminate with the No. 72 Take Over by B Arts at the Astley Walk space on Friday 29 and Saturday 30 April. Highlights of these interactive two days include Betty Buffer’s Night In where the audience will be shown how to make the most of food that might otherwise go to waste, and the Little School of Improbably Cooking when some unlikely chefs will invite families to work with them on some fantastical challenges as they create a magical meal together.

Appetite Director Gemma Thomas said: “We’ve worked with our Newcastle Common Lead Artist Dan Thompson to pull this programme together and invite people to come along, take a look, and have a go. We want people to think about becoming activists and how Newcastle and our surrounding towns could become more green. We want to encourage questions and responses to what has been included. We don’t have all the answers – it’s about connecting and trying to make changes, and making them more real for every day. We asked artists to respond to Green Town and hope their work provokes action, sparks inspiration and makes little or large changes.”

Green Town is the latest project at Newcastle Common, a partnership project in the town centre being delivered by Appetite and Newcastle-under-Lyme BID. It is experimenting with uses of empty shops as spaces for art and culture and has run a wide and varied programme including exhibitions and workshops since June 2021.

For more details on the project visit www.appetite.org.uk or contact us at askus@appetite.org.uk / 01782 381373.

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