West End star Gareth Gates to launch youth-led ‘creative revolution’ of Manchester’s high street

By Daisy Yates

West End star Gareth Gates will lend his hand to a ‘creative revolution’ of Manchester’s high street this week.

Gareth is the celebrity ambassador for somewhereto_ re:store, otherwise known as the ‘high street heist’, a youth-led high street takeover of five disused shop spaces across the UK this summer – and set to open a Manchester shop next week.

The takeover will be based at the Corn Exchange in Manchester, after the launch on July 25.

The campaign aims to allow the energy and ideas of young people to revitalise the struggling high streets which were once a fundamental part of communities.

Gareth said: “The empty high street is a huge issue in the UK at the moment and I believe somewhereto_ re:store is the perfect remedy to bring it back to life.

“I look forward to opening the store in Manchester and witnessing all the young talent and potential somewhereto_ has to offer.”

However, Gareth is not the only person getting involved.

International fashion designer Paul Griffiths of alternative clothing line Babycakes will be injecting the energy from his bold pop-art into the launch, as well as funk and soul musician Joss Owen and his band J Bear and the Giants, upcoming Manchester based designers Makers Dozen and Salford Sirens from the University of Salford.

As well as this, the rest of the six-week takeover will be packed with exhibitions, performances and youth-led activities, including a piece from Britain’s Got Talent winners Attraction.

Laura Sharika Haddick, somewhereto_ re:store manager, said: “There are so many young people out there, this is wonderful movement which will bring their talent and creativity to life.”

Theo Paphitis made his fortune in the retail sector and is a great supporter of the high street heist.

He said: “Becoming a campaign representative for the somewhereto_ re:store was a simple choice. Young people are the entrepreneurs of the future and we should be looking to them as one of our sources of innovation for the high streets of tomorrow.”

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Picture courtesy of Terry George, with thanks.

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