In Haunt

#OurTrafford is a brand new virtual festival organised by the mental health charity MancSpirit and taking place on the 23-30 October 2020, dedicated to celebrating the diverse culture and creativity across the Trafford region. Now the organisers are on the lookout for individuals and groups to get involved, by putting their talents forward as part of it!

Whether it’s music, art, performance, comedy, poetry or any other entertaining skill, MancSpirit want to hear from people of all ages in and from the Trafford community who would like to have their talent showcased! Individuals, community groups, businesses and organisations are all welcome to apply to participate, with submissions to be directed to ourtrafford@mancspirit.com.

MancSpirit

Trafford is an area many people may know for landmarks like The Trafford Centre and Old Trafford football stadium… but #OurTrafford is determined to emphasise that it is so much more than that! After all, the borough covers over 40 square miles and is rich with community creativity, hidden histories, grassroots involvement and heritage. Cornbrook, Streford, Urmston, Sale and Timperley are just some examples of the settlements that sit within Trafford, and considering it is a place with over 200 listed buildings, as well as traces of Bronze Age, Roman, and even Neolithic activity, there is plenty to discover!

#OurTrafford marks the opportunity to be part of an innovative new festival that is already accumulating an exciting line-up, with the world premiere of  writer Dave Viney’s short film ‘Love Bugged’ set to feature. A new song has also been written especially for the online event by singer-songwriter and musician Scott Lloyd, and the festival is supported by the GMCA Culture fund; highlighting its contribution to the continuous cultural celebration of Manchester.

Why Trafford? This vibrant borough of the city deserves more recognition, according to co-founder of MancSpirit and local Sale resident Paul Ludden:

“I chose Trafford as a place to make my home and raise my three children, and I see all the time the incredible talent and community spirit that exists in the borough. I wanted to give that talent, dedication and passion a platform through developing this festival.”

“The festival is an excellent opportunity for everyone across the borough to share their talents and take part in an inspirational and positive week of online activity. Whether that is exploring the festival throughout the week or by sending in some of your poetry, art, music or anything fun and ‘creative’.”

A key supporter of the festival is Trafford Housing Trust, whose Business Partnership Manager Sarah Millican reflected:

 “MancSpirit has been an inspiration throughout what has been a challenging last six months, bringing much needed creativity and enjoyment to the residents of Trafford, and in particular some of Trafford Housing Trust’s customers.  We’re delighted to support the festival, and we will be encouraging our customers and colleagues to get involved.”

So how does the online festival work?  Attendees can watch the entertainment unfold through a series of social media streams, as well as on the MancSpirit YouTube channel and podcasts… meaning all-the-more opportunity to experience what is on offer. Viewers can also join in by using the #OurTrafford hashtag throughout the week, to share festival content.

Damian Carr, co-founder of MancSprit, added:

“MancSpirit is Greater Manchester’s mental wellbeing charity, and we know people will find something entertaining, inspiring and encouraging with what’s on offer. Seeing and hearing what’s already coming through has put a huge smile on my face, and that’s certainly something we could all do with at the moment.”

Both Paul and Damian insist that the #OurTrafford festival is just the start of an exciting programme of legacy projects, designed to benefit the people of Trafford for years to come, and they have already started on an idea for a #CaringForOurCarers programme. There are also plans to go beyond Trafford and into other boroughs, including Wigan, Bury and Stockport.

For more information, visit the MancSpirit website at www.mancspirit.com, Twitter @MancSpirit and @MancMade or @MancSpirit and @MancMade on Instagram.

By Emily Oldfield 

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