We're so excited to announce that The Old Courts now has its very first official patrons: Chris Hawkins (BBC 6 Music) and DJ Graeme Park.

Both have done so much for the arts and music scenes through the years. We're incredibly grateful for their support and thrilled to be working with them!

Graeme Park is an original Hacienda DJ who's spent 30 years on the decks and 20 years on the radio and is still going strong. He performed in The Old Courts Grand Vault on 'Mad Friday' in 2019. Graeme found himself working in a Nottingham record shop called Selectadisc in the early 1980s, when the very first house records began to filter through from Chicago, Detroit and New York. When the shop’s owner opened a nightclub, it was only natural he should turn to Graeme to select the discs. Determined to showcase this new style of music, his reputation as a house pioneer soon brought him to the attention of Mike Pickering at The Haçienda in Manchester, who asked him to cover for him while he went on holiday in 1988. Simply put, there was no-one else in the country who could do the job. The Summer of Love followed, and Parky quickly became one of the biggest names on the emerging dance scene. Aside from his nine year residency at The Haç, he was one of the first British DJs to play places like Australia, South America, the USA, Asia and beyond as well as producing and remixing tracks for the dancefloor, including The Brand New Heavies, Inner City, Eric B & Rakim, New Order, Sophie Ellis-Bextor and others.

Graeme Park said: “I have had great nights DJing at both Square Chapel in Halifax and The Old Courts in Wigan. I am excited to become a patron of these two wonderful venues and look forward to working with them in the coming months.”

Chris Hawkins presents the daily Early Breakfast show (5 - 7.30am) on BBC Radio 6 Music (5-7.30am) 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.

Chris is also a Radio 4 documentary presenter, most recently presenting an in-depth programme investigating the links between contemporary music and politics. He is among a select number of presenters to host the prestigious Radio 4 programme, Pick of the Week. He is also regular voice on BBC Radio 5 live. On screen, Chris appears on BBC Breakfast TV, BBC News and has presented films on BBC Inside Out.

Chris Hawkins said: "The Old Courts mission is to create; engage and inspire so when they asked me to be a patron, how could I say no? The team are extremely ambitious with exciting plans. I’m delighted to be a small part of their future."

With thanks to Cann Communications.

create     engage     inspire

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The Old Courts is a trading name of Arts at the Mill CIC a registered Community Interest Company registered in England

under Number 07411657 at Gerrard Winstanley House, Crawford Street, Wigan, WN1 1NA