About The Project

‘We all know that people are the same wherever you go’ Paul McCartney


Derelict is a live arts organisation based in Preston, Lancashire in the UK and have been forging a network with residents of Preston known as Art of the City. Art of the City had plans for a progamme of arts activity in the summer of 2020, but were unable to get together due to the Covid 19 crisis.  Derelict devised 'Preston Calling' as an opportunity to create a piece of work with its Art of the City members that would unite them during the crisis, and share their stories with others around the world.

Philip Sykes Head Shot.JPG

Philip Sykes
Project Coordinator 

Derelict Art of the City

'Preston Calling' started with one piece of information. From a conversation with Zuppa Theatre, who hail from Halifax, Nova Scotia, we knew that Halifax is roughly a one hour drive from Preston, Nova Scotia. This was interesting we thought, seeing as our Preston is roughly a one hour drive from Halifax in the UK. We wondered how many other Prestons there are in the world and how their residents were doing in the midst of a pandemic. Perhaps this was the perfect opportunity to ask them we thought. 

We learnt that there are (give or take the odd ghost town or unincorporated community) sixty villages, towns and cities around the world called Preston. We devised five very basic questions and embarked on our internet quest to try and reach one person from each Preston and ultimately bring sixty strangers from around the world together. We have since engaged with many incredible people with fascinating stories and feel very proud to share them here with you.