Thank you to our honorary patrons for their passion and support.
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Legendary DJ Graeme Park is an original Hacienda DJ who sells out at venues across the globe! He has spent 30 years on the decks and 20 years on the radio and is still going strong.
Chris Hawkins presents the daily Early Breakfast show on BBC Radio 6 Music and has interviewed some of music’s biggest stars, including Calvin Harris; The Killers; Florence Welch; Dave Grohl and Jack White. He is a notable champion of 2019 Brits Critics Choice Winner, Sam Fender.
Wigan’s very own Eva Pope has had a successful career to date and has also travelled the world acting and teaching. Pope’s work includes roles in TV dramas and series such as Law and Order, Spooks, Life on Mars, The Bill, Coronation Street, Cold Feet, and Bad Girls.
Warringtonian Darren Jeffries began acting professionally aged 15, after a performance in Warrington’s Parr Hall led him to his first role in Channel 4’s Hollyoaks. As prominent cast member Sam ‘OB’ O’Brien, he remained on the show for a further ten years. He has since performed on stage at various theatres across the UK including Manchester’s HOME, Bolton’s Octagon Theatre and Square Chapel Arts Centre in Halifax, alongside various TV roles. Jeffries also runs film and acting workshops for anyone wanting to get into the stage and screen acting industry.
Reece Dinsdale, who recently starred in the award-winning TV soap Emmerdale, is also a patron of The Old Courts sister venue Square Chapel Arts Centre in Halifax. Dinsdale’s career spans over decades and across stage, TV and film. Reece has starred in many high- profile TV dramas ranging from leading roles in the BAFTA award winning Threads and Jim Henson’s Storyteller, through Spooks, Life on Mars, to Joe McIntyre in Coronation Street and the hugely popular comedy series Home to Roost opposite the late John Thaw.
Liverpudlian John McArdle is a familiar face on screen and stage. McArdle’s numerous television credits include playing series regulars in the ITV’s Emmerdale, Channel 4’s Brookside, BBC’s The Case, Waterloo Road, All the Small Things and Mersey Beat for which he won the award for Best Actor in the Regional Television Society Awards 2002. His stage credits include An Enemy of the People, Things I Know To Be True (Frantic Assembly) and The Red Lion for Rapture Theatre. McArdle is also an author as well as actor and director. His debut book ‘You Never Said Goodbye’ is available via Amazon.
Manchester’s Richard Searling BEM has been adopted by the people of Wigan. Searling is best known as the king of Northern Soul and is often found spinning the decks on various local BBC radio stations and his own weekly programmes on Mixcloud. Searling was awarded the British Empire Medal for Services to the Soul Music industry and Community in the North of England in the Queen’s Honours list, June 2019.