Music memories and memorabilia are to be displayed at an outdoor summer exhibition.

Creative People and Places programme Appetite has teamed up with Hanley venue The Sugarmill to ask music lovers to share their memories, anecdotes, photos and memorabilia from local gigs and concerts for the exhibition in August.

The partnership pop-up project – Bangers and Mosh – supported by Stoke-on-Trent City Centre Business Improvement District (BID) and Stoke-on-Trent City Council, is set to be displayed in Stoke-on-Trent City Centre.

Members of the public are invited to submit images and memories via email, or can bring along physical memorabilia like photographs, posters, merchandise and ticket stubs to one of the drop-in sessions at Music Mania in Hanley, from 10am to 3pm on Saturday 19, Wednesday 23 and Saturday 26 June.

Digital images and stories can also be emailed to  stokemusicmemories@gmail.com before Friday 25 June.

Appetite Director Gemma Thomas said: “Music is part of the identity of Stoke. When asked about the area people shout about the potteries and then second about the music scene – whether northern soul, indie, rock, rave into dance or everything before and after. We’ve all got a story of someone we’ve seen, or those bands and musicians we love, or venues that we’ve danced and sung our hearts out in. We want to put those memories of good times back in the centre of peoples’ minds and celebrate reopening of local venues, like our partners The Sugarmill and many more. We’ll be creating an outdoor exhibition from what we manage to collect from everyones personal collections of stories, merch, ticket stubs, photos and more. We can’t wait to see and hear what people have got.”

Danni Brownsill, Head of Promotions at The Sugarmill said: “People send us their gig memories all the time, items they have saved for years and years because they mean something special to them. Often, these are things we don’t even have archived. We want to share those images and stories more widely. Stoke has a rich history of iconic artists and gigs taking place in the city, but this project is not just about that. At my venue, we get to hear all the time of people who have had their lives changed by shows they’ve attended, and not just because of the artist on stage. They met their best friend or their partner at a gig. Babies have been born to couples who met here, and those babies are now old enough to be coming here themselves. This demonstrates how the music venues in this city aren’t simply about the music – they are an important part of the story of the city itself and its people.”

Richard Buxton, Stoke-On-Trent City Centre BID Manager said: “As a music lover myself, I can’t wait to see Bangers and Mosh in all its glory in August, and I certainly have more than a few stories relating to local bands and venues myself. I have way too many personal highlights to pick just one, but the friendship I have built with bands, technicians and promoters over the years has been amazing.

“At the BID, we have a keen focus on embracing and championing the city’s music scene too, and so live performances from world music acts and local bands will make up much of the programme for our Better World Festival, a free, family-friendly weekend event taking place in the city centre from 6-8 August – and we hope that many more wonderful memories and anecdotes will be created there.”

Councillor Lorraine Beardmore, Stoke-on-Trent City Council cabinet member for culture, leisure and public health, said: “Music is a hugely important part of Stoke-on-Trent’s creative spirit and its identity. We’ve produced huge stars such as Robbie Williams, Slash, and Lemmy from Motörhead, as well as playing a major role in the northern soul scene.

“Some of the biggest bands in history have played here – including The Beatles at our very own King’s Hall in 1963. From Stevie Wonder to Shirley Bassey, Queen to The Cure, and Oasis to The 1975, there have been so many amazing musicians who brought their incredible talents to our city. Today the music scene in Stoke-on-Trent continues to be really exciting, with our venues attracting some of the biggest names.

“One of my favourite memories is watching Jake Bugg at the Victoria Hall a few years back. He’s a favourite of mine, so I was thrilled when he came to play here in the city. I can’t wait to see this new exhibition and enjoy some of the other wonderful memories people have of fantastic live music in Stoke-on-Trent. We’re also really keen to support the return of gigs, in a safe way, over the coming months and we’re looking forward to more top acts playing at our wonderful, unique venues, creating amazing new memories for our residents and visitors.”

For more details, visit appetite.org.uk or contact us at askus@appetitestoke.co.uk / 01782 381373.

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