With an illuminated giant Jabberwocky, puppet shows and virtual reality offerings, you'd be a fool to miss Lancashire Encounter when it returns this September.

Dubbed as a 'festival to discover, experience and be immersed in a bold and imaginative spectacle of performance, music, street theatre and art', Lancashire Encounter will once again grace sites across Preston city centre from Friday September 17.

This year, organisers, along with the council, have extended the event, which will welcome all your favourite activities, including an illuminated giant called Jabberwocky, comedy, puppet shows, music, dance and virtual reality.

Preston City Council are also inviting everyone to their Family Picnic in Winckley Square Gardens on Sunday September 19.

Hosting many of the Lancashire Encounter events, as well as an exciting programme soon to be announced, is a new and unique venue space called the MET - Mobile Event Tent - a fresh, dynamic venue celebrating Preston's art and culture scene.

The MET will pop-up around Preston city centre, mainly in the Harris Quarter by Preston Markets, and host events such as exhibitions, workshops, gigs, and a variety of performances not to be missed. 

Cabinet member for arts at culture at Preston City Council, Councillor Peter Kelly, said: "It feels fantastic to be able to bring Lancashire Encounter back to the city - a festival that has been such a success in the past and we don't want you to miss a thing.

"The programme is extremely diverse with a very exciting line-up of local, regional and national artists and groups, making Lancashire Encounter festival a truly worthy legacy of the Preston Guild.

"The Mayor of Preston's torchlight parade, acting as the festival's finale, on Saturday October 2 will be a sight for sore eyes after such a difficult time for everyone and we'll be celebrating the resilience of our communities and key workers with fun, music and an almighty fire-breathing dragon."

But it's not just about watching - Lancashire Encounter lets you get involved too.

If you are interested in participating in the festival, you can join a community choir or a Salsa dance workshop.

The final touches are still being made to the festival programme, but once ready, it will include all the details you need to get involved.

The festival will culminate in the Mayor's Covid Thank You torchlight parade finale on Saturday October 2.

The events are free to attend but some workshops or indoor events will be ticketed due to limited capacity

Lancashire Telegraph: