A Lancashire town has been visited by some of the UK’s most famous faces to celebrate a clothing exhibition which is running this month.

Celebrities including DJ Goldie, magician Dynamo, Happy Mondays' Bez, Shaun Ryder and singer Rowetta all visited Darwen last week to launch the exhibition of Italian sportswear brand – C.P. Company.

'Cinquanta' is a retrospective on 50 years of sportswear innovation by C.P. Company.

The exhibition, which runs until October 10, is part of the British Textiles Biennial programme.

Dynamo sprinkled some of his magic when he visited the exhibition.

Bradford-born Dynamo said: "Being a fan of CP Company and Gary Aspden when I heard about this exhibition I knew it would be something Spezial (pun intended!).

"To hear that it was taking place in Darwen was not only incredible and brave – but is a testament to the belief that Gary inspires.

"I think C.P have shown their integrity bringing the exhibition directly to the people who arguably gave them that integrity in the first place.

"It was an honour to be at the private viewing and now its open to the public, I am sure it’s gonna have a massive impact!

"The town’s celebrity visitors were in good company with fans who travelled across the globe to be at the launch event.’’

Happy Mondays stars also made sure to attend the exhibit before performing at Darwen Live.

The Happy Mondays official account posted a picture of them at the exhibition.

Bez, Shaun and Rowetta can be seen in the photo which was captioned: “Happy Mondays in the Darwen area… @bezmondays @shaunryderx & @rowetta with the main man @gary.aspden at the C.P. Company's 50th anniversary exhibition in collaboration with adidas Spezial!”


A post shared by Happy Mondays (@happymondaysofficial)

View on Instagram

DJ Goldie was also spotted at the event.

He posted a picture to Instagram with the caption: @cp_company_official #spezial launch 🚀 🎁⚡️🔥 @penultimo what a great archive show #superetrofuture vibes too ,watch this space @gary.aspden


A post shared by GOLDIE (@mrgoldie)

View on Instagram

With the unveiling of England and Manchester United star Luke Shaw’s giant mural, Darwen Live, and the launch of cult sportswear brand C.P Company’s 50th anniversary exhibition as part of the British Textile Biennial – little old Darwen has become a place that everyone’s talking about right now.

Darwen was even discussed on Soccer AM last weekend after its presenter, John ‘Fenners’ Fendley, came up to host a ‘sold out C.P. Company panel talk’ at the Darwen Library Theatre last Friday evening (1 October).

On the episode, John talked aout the a huge mural of England and Manchester United left back Luke Shaw who will be part of the upcoming collaboration between adidas 'Spezial' and premium Italian casual wear brand C.P. Company.

John said: “If you live in the Blackburn area, specifically Darwen, you might have seen this enormous mural appear on a former bank this week.

“It’s caused quite a storm on social media.”



A post shared by John Fendley (@fennersinsta)

View on Instagram

On last Saturday’s episode (aired 2 October), Fenners was even spotted wearing a jacket from the C.P. Company.


A post shared by John Fendley (@fennersinsta)

View on Instagram


And a lot of this celebrity interest is thanks to the vision and dedication of adidas designer and proud Darrener, Gary Aspden.

The unassuming global adidas designer has maintained connections with some of the biggest names in the celebrity world since his days as Global Head of the adidas Entertainment marketing team.

A combination of Gary’s friendships, the appeal of the C.P. Company brand and their incredible ‘Cinquanta’ exhibition has brought such famous names to this friendly borough.

Gary said: "I strongly believe that culture is crucial to the regeneration of post-industrial areas. A focus on creativity can enhance the quality of people’s lives and make these more desirable places to live in

"If you don’t believe in youth then you have got nothing so it’s great to show the young people of Darwen and Blackburn new possibilities by bringing what is a milestone event from an iconic Italian designer brand here.

"It was a courageous move for C.P. Company to invest in a project outside of the major cities and I commend them for that.

"I believe that’s what captured the imagination of some of our high profile guests who showed up to support the launch.

"The president and the senior team from C.P. Company were overwhelmed by the welcome and gratitude shown to them by local people and were behind the idea of using the exhibition as a vehicle to raise the profile and funds of Nightsafe. They have been super happy with the attendance and response to the exhibition so far.’’


A post shared by C.P. Company (@cp_company_official)

View on Instagram

Cllr Phil Riley, Executive Member for Growth and Development and the Council’s lead representative on the Town Deal Board, added:"What we have seen happen in Darwen of late has been nothing short of world-class.

’’We have got to give huge thanks to people like Gary, who, instead of turning their backs on their home to favour the bigger cities, they are doing the opposite to look at the art of what’s possible; putting Darwen on an international stage, bringing major investment, real change and hope.’

"What has been happening here of late has created a real sense of optimism for residents, investors and future generations. You can see that its not only ok, but pretty cool to have a real pride for your hometown and it shows to talented young people that they don’t need to move away to be successful in life.’’

You can check out C.P's 'Cinquanta' exhibition until the 10th of October at Darwen Market, 46 Croft St, Darwen BB3 1BH. Find out more on the British Textiles Biennial website: https://britishtextilebiennial.co.uk/workshop/