The Great Get Together

Brightlife is delighted to have joined forces with Storyhouse in Chester to host our very own ‘Great Get Together’ between 10am and 5.30pm on Saturday 17th June.

Local residents and visitors to the city can enjoy a full day of free taster activities taking place all around Storyhouse, including talks, workshops, singing and song writing, felting, crafts, games, well being treatments, digital tasters, films and photography. For those who prefer to just relax, there’s also an opportunity to enjoy a chat with one of our friendly Community Connectors over a cuppa in the ‘Happy To Chat’ cafe.

The day will focus on the fun you can have by trying out new things in good company, through a full-day programme of free and entertaining activities to suit all tastes and abilities.

‘The Great Get Together’ is a national celebration inspired by the much-loved late MP, Jo Cox. 

Take a look at all the fantastic things going on!

All activities are free and held on a ‘drop-by-and-have-a-go’, first-come-first-served basis unless otherwise stated.

Keys to My Memory Photography Exhibition
Time: All Day
Place: Lobby
An intergenerational photography exhibition, capturing intimate dialogues between strangers of different generations. Produced by four second-year Photography students from the University of Chester (Lorna Elwin, Abi Miller, Beth Grimes-Thomas and Tim Newman), the exhibition features images of older people alongside everyday objects with particular significance to their lives.

Birds in the City: Meeting Point at 10.30am
FREE EVENT: Booking required Time: 10.30am – 12.00pm
Place: Lobby
Booking Required
BOOK YOUR TICKET TO THIS FREE ACTIVITY by calling Brightlife on 01606 884444.
Enjoy a 90-minute walk around the city, including the city walls and Grosvenor Park, whilst local ecologist Dr Anne Brenchley helps you identify different species of birds along the way.

Brightlife’s ‘Happy to Chat’ café!
Why not have a cuppa with one of our friendly ‘Community Connectors’ who can be found in and around The Kitchen area throughout the day. They’re always happy to chat and can talk to you about what you might like to do locally to help you get out more, whether that’s trying a new activity or taking up a hobby.

‘Step Towards a Brighter Life’
Time: 2.30pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Theatre
Premiere of Brightlife’s new 90-second animation

‘Exploring Loneliness’
Time: 2.35pm – 3.10pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Theatre
A witty and insightful talk by Producer, Director, Screenwriter and Brightlife Volunteer John Oakden, best known for his work as a scriptwriter on some of the UK’s most popular TV series’ (Emmerdale, Eastenders and Brookside).

British Sign Language (BSL) Taster Workshop (30 mins)
FREE EVENT: Booking required Time: 3.30pm | 4.30pm
Place: Garret Theatre
Booking required – Call 01606 884444
Network Tutor, Judith Kidd.
In Britain, the most common form of Sign Language is called British Sign Language (BSL) and is the preferred language of around 145,000 people within the UK. These 30-minute taster sessions will give you an introduction to BSL including:
• How to communicate with D/deaf people (do’s and dont’s)
• Basic everyday signs
• Basic numbers/fingerspelling
Deafness Support Network (DSN) delivers practical services, advice and support to D/deaf people, and their families and carers, across Chester, Northwich and surrounding areas. TO BOOK FOR THE 3.30pm or 4.30pm BSL workshops CALL 01606 884444

VX Centurion Knitters
Time: 10.00am – 12.30pm Free event booking not required
Place: Book Pod
Our lovely friends from the Centurion Pub in Vicars Cross will be located in the Book Pod. Join them for a natter and have a go at knitting a blanket square or a hat for the Premature Baby Unit at the Countess of Chester Hospital (good exercise for hands and mouths!).

Memories of Chester
Time: 4.30pm – 5.30pm Free event booking not required
Place: Book Pod
Come and reminisce with us. Tell us about the good old days and your memories of this wonderful city, and help us to create a modern map with images from the past.

Knit and Natter with Age UK Cheshire
Time: 1.00pm – 4.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Book Pod
Knit and Natter with Age UK Cheshire. Meet some of the friendly team from Age UK Cheshire, and learn how to make the miniature hats for Innocent Smoothie bottles to raise funds for the ‘Big Knit’ initiative, helping older people stay warm and well.

Storytelling: Interfaith Tales
Time: 11.45am – 12.30pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Bar
A series of short stories (10-15 minutes) from different faith groups, followed by question and discussion time.

‘The Museum of Us’
Time: 11.30am – 1.30pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Bar
Yvonne Boyle from Community Compass invites you to help create ‘The Museum of Us’. Situated in the Garret Bar, this is a fun, creative session inviting people to share their thoughts and memories through a collective display. Community Compass is a Brightlife-funded project that runs social ‘Compass Clubs’ across the borough. Call 01606 827131 for more details.

Taster Relaxation Treatments
Time: 12.30pm – 1.30pm | 2.00 – 3.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Bar
If you’re exhausted from all the chatting and craft making, why not relax with Lynsey McCabe from Beehive Health Care, who will be happy to provide a relaxing drop-in treatment. Choose from Indian Head massage, Reflexology or Thai foot and leg or hand and arm massage.

Sue’s Great Brightlife Beetle Drive
Time: 2.00pm – 3.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Garret Bar
Tried and tested at the Brightlife Drop-Ins (in Vicars Cross, Handbridge and Lache), Sue will be bringing her highly-lauded Beetle Drive to Storyhouse for one day only. Don’t miss out – come and have some fun helping build a Beetle (bug not car). No skill needed.
With the support of Brighter Days.

Sensory Squares for Dementia
Time: 10.00am – 12.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Den
Community Volunteer Fiona Garrett invites you to join her in making sensory ‘squares’ for people living with dementia, using a range of fabrics and items to provide interest, stimulation and comfort.

CrossHatch Gallery Wonderland
Time: 12.30pm – 2.15pm Free event booking not required
Place: Den
Community artist Anne Johnson and her team of creative volunteers from the CrossHatch Gallery in Winsford invite you to join them in some Wonderland fun, making giant paper flowers and woven dragonflies. Find out more on Facebook @crosshatchgallerywinsford or call 07581 664244.

Handmade Bookmaking
Time: 2.30pm – 5.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Den
Handmade Bookmaking with Community Volunteer Linda Sharps. Come and learn some intricate bookmaking skills from Linda and leave with a little book of your own to take away! Demonstrations will be held at 2.30pm, 3.15pm and 4pm.

Digital Buddies
Time: 12.00pm – 2.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Meeting Room
Drop In: Booking not required
Come along to this drop-in session to ask about anything digital! Whether you want to learn how to send and receive emails, discover how to search the internet, or to dip your toe into the world of social media – the friendly team of trained Digital Buddies will be on hand to help and advise you. If you’re unable to come along on the day, call Heather on 07958 611618 to find out about some of the other free courses at Storyhouse.

Song in Seconds
Time: 2.30pm – 4.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Meeting Room
FREE EVENT: Booking required – Call 01606 884444
Song in Seconds with Claire Mooney (workshop provided courtesy of Silver Rainbows).
Brightlife is delighted to welcome gifted songwriter and performer Claire Mooney and her popular ‘Song In Seconds’ workshop. Claire has over 20 years’ experience working with all kinds of groups in a wide range of community settings, running poetry, song writing, recording, audio/radio and training workshops.

Fabulous 50+ Photography
Time: 4.30pm – 5.00pm Free event booking not required
Place: Meeting Room
FREE EVENT: Booking required – Call 01606 884444
Fabulous 50+ Photography with talented WEA tutor, Anthony Firmin. Anthony will be providing friendly, jargon-free tuition (including one-to-one advice) on how to create fabulous portraits quickly.
This Fabulous 50+ Photography taster is just one of the activities on offer through WEA’s Fabulous 50+ Arts programme funded by Brightlife to help reduce social isolation in older people by providing free taster courses in the arts. To find out more, call WEA on 0151 243 5340.

How to find Storyhouse

Hunter Street in Chester city centre CH1 2AR (near the Cathedral on the site of the old Odeon Cinema).
Nearest Car Parks
Market Place Car Park, CH1 2HH
Delamere Street Car Park, CH2 2AY
The whole building is accessible via lift, with wheelchair access to all areas.
Visit for more information.
Accessible parking and drop-off points
The nearest accessible car park is Market which has 8 disabled spaces – 200 metres from nearest exit
There is free on street parking /car park for blue badge holders on Hamilton Place and Goss Street (4 hours max) – c.300 metres away
The best place for drop-offs is Northgate Street – 20 metres away


coming later this year …

The Brightlife Festival will take place from 1st-6th October 2017 to coincide with National Older People’s Day and Silver Sunday (on Sunday 1st October).  A wide and varied programme of free activities specifically designed and chosen by people over 50 will be provided by our commissioned services and community partners.

Festival partners in 2016 included Community Compass, Cheshire Wildlife Trust, Oddfellows, Cheshire Fire and Rescue, Chester Pride and Chester Dee Radio. We’d love for next year’s festival to be even bigger and better so if you’d like to get involved, please email

We run regular events in Cheshire West and Chester throughout the year.  Make sure you stay up-to-date with all our latest news by liking our Facebook page following us on Twitter or by signing up to our newsletter (subscribe via the form below).

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