The city you’ve always lived in – or at least, grew up in – will always seem 1 part comforting and 1 part boring. Technically Preston is a city but I’ve never heard anyone who actually lives here call it the ‘city’ – it shall be Town or P-Town forever. Either way, you often don’t notice things in your own town/city/village/neck of the woods until someone points them out to you. When you then realise that some pretty nice places are right under your nose.
A couple of weeks ago I attended a colour-themed photowalk organised by CWS Creatives, when, in nothing short of a miracle, the sun shone brightly on the day themed around brights. In Preston, the wettest city in England (according to some statistics, anyway). Relief and gratitude for sunshine aside, the day was just lovely, as you’d expect from a morning spent wandering around your hometown with likeminded creative folks snapping photos and eating a posh picnic on the park.
Our first stop was Jonah’s Coffee, one of the many foodie spots at the newly(ish) renovated Preston Market. It’s nice to see your hometown scrubbing up well and nice places popping up like this! Then began our walk around Preston town centre following the Pied Piper (aka Robyn Swain) with the big bunch of balloons supplied by Signed With Love Weddings. Everyone embraced the colour theme wholeheartedly so we were a rather a vivid troop, with balloons and sunflowers and all sorts of props to top it off. Needless to say we received a few weird looks, but when you’re in a big group it’s not as annoying as being heckled by workmen whilst out shooting with just your pal – at least you can expect curiosity on this occasion.
Embracing colour right down to the shoes (red Saltwater Sandals Classics because after my white pair I am obsessed). Found a Salties twin too didn’t I! Mine are from Office Shoes, where I nipped in, bought a red pair without trying on, and swapped the white pair on my feet for the red in the shop.
Skirt and bodysuit both H&M – this skirt is one of my most complimented items and favourite sale buys to date
Apparently I have a thing for navy walls. That said, I’ve never noticed this particular one before – which is kind of the point of the whole photowalk I guess! God knows how many times I’ve walked around Preston town centre and maybe not paid enough attention to the side streets, car park walls and residential roads that are actually colourful and lovely (well maybe not ‘lovely’ in the case of the car park but you know what I mean). This photowalk has definitely encouraged me to spend more time in my hometown away from the main high street or running errands in M&S, and to wander around different town centre areas when I have a little time to kill.
Who’d have thought a multi-storey car park would be such a good background eh? This location definitely confused any onlookers. I’d like to think I have a pretty decent eye for spotting photogenic spots but I’ll admit I’d never even noticed half of these colourful places.
No surprises that Avenham park is pretty, but I hadn’t realised just how photogenic the top end is. Obviously glorious sunshine and blue skies help, but I made mental notes of all the spots I need to revisit for outfit photos.
As for aforementioned Posh Picnic, UKCityChef put on a spread that definitely beat the usual picnic affair with salad jars, tasty sandwiches and nibbles. Winckley Square is another spot that’s become so much nicer over the last few years – Friday morning colourful picnic in the park with fellow creative folk was rather idyllic I must say.
Thanks again to Morgana and Robyn for organising this – I can’t wait for the Autumn version! It goes to show that a very ordinary British town ain’t so bad after all, and it pays to pay more attention to the high street you’ve walked 50 million times. If you haven’t meandered around your hometown with camera in hand and without a to do list, I highly recommend doing so!
Lily Kate x
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