Alexander Roe, left, Paul HeptinstallAlexander Roe, left, Paul Heptinstall


Porsche Centre Preston’s hook-up with symphony orchestra is music to the ears

  • Preston is now no longer the only major UK city without an orchestra
  • The last time it had an orchestra was the early 1960s
  • Porsche Centre tells of importance of supporting the arts
  • First concert will take place on June 9

Time 12:04 pm, March 22, 2024

Porsche Centre Preston and a crowdfunding campaign have led to the return of an orchestra for the city.

Preston has been without its own orchestra since the early 1960s but that’s no longer the case, following a corporate partnership with the dealership and an online crowdfunding campaign.

The initiative was sparked by Matthew Price, who is the orchestra’s chairman, after he decided the city should have one again, and it has now officially launched.

Until now, Preston was the only major city in the UK without an orchestra.

More than 40 musicians have been recruited, with rehearsals taking place every week in Longton, near Preston.

Their first concert will be on June 9 at Ashton Methodist Church in Preston, with Phantom of the Opera excerpts, highlights from Jurassic Park, 007 Through the Years and an Abba medley among the pieces to be performed.

Alexander Roe, the orchestra’s marketing and publicity manager, said: ‘It’s incredible that 60 years have passed without a Preston-based orchestra.

‘That means that two generations have never known an orchestra based in the city, and is why we’re so thrilled to bring this community celebration of classical music back after such a long hiatus.

‘The launch of the Preston Symphony Orchestra is a dream realised for many of us. It’s not just about the music, it’s also about reviving Preston’s cultural heartbeat and inspiring future generations.’

On its website, the orchestra thanks the Porsche Centre team ‘for your interest, enthusiasm and keenness in supporting the orchestra’.

Amy Lancaster-Hall, marketing manager at Porsche Centre Preston, said: ‘When we heard that Preston was the only UK city without an orchestra, we couldn’t believe it. We knew we had to do something to help.

‘Supporting the arts is important to us. The orchestra represents innovation, excellence and passion – values we share at Porsche.

‘We are proud to participate in this historic new cultural chapter for Preston.’

Pictured at top are Alexander Roe, left, and orchestra secretary Paul Heptinstall at Porsche Centre Preston

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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