Appetite, Arts Council England’s creative people and places project in North Staffordshire, has commissioned five local artists to create new Maps in March, illustrating different aspects of Newcastle-under-Lyme town centre.
The editor dragged two of the artists away from their drawing boards at Appetite’s Newcastle Common arts space and enjoyed a stroll and a chat to find out more.
“It turns out with Newcastle-under-Lyme that the market’s been one of the main things for the culture of the place,” says Kidda.
Kidda’s theme for Maps in March is the town’s bustling market.
“Recently I was reading a report,” said Kidda, “where apparently in 1162, that’s when the town was first documented in historic records, what happened was the castle was built and erected. Apparently the closest other one was Chester. It was basically erected which allowed people in the local villages to come for protection. And what happened is the garrison would allow people to trade their things every Thursday, and before you knew it, it basically turned in to a market, because people were transporting through from Liverpool to Manchester or Birmingham. And instead of it being Stoke, Newcastle-under-Lyme became the coaching city. It ended up being like, actually you can have that market on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, just make it all week!”
Listen to the editor’s full interview with Kidda here: