ART is igniting the streets, shops and venue spaces of St Helens as works by Frank Cottrell Boyce and Ken Loach come to the town – with no location off limits.

Since September 16, the Take Over Festival including art, culture and pop-up performances have been showcased in venues across the borough from libraries to labour clubs to mark St Helens’ 150th anniversary.

Contributors include Rainhill-raised Frank Cottrell Boyce, who will deliver a series of readings from his popular children’s books, including Millions, on Thursday, October 11, and Sputnik’s Guide to Life on Saturday, October 13.

The Thursday event, which is aimed at 16 and overs, will take place from 7pm and the Saturday event, which is family friendly, will start at 1.30pm.

Among the exciting performances coming up is Sunday’s Best, which is currently on show in 20B Church Street (inside City Mobile), St Helens.

It is a video projection bringing together the sounds and images of praise and worship in a Ghanaian Community Church – showcasing how faith and history intertwine.

It is free to attend and will be open from Wednesday to Saturdays until Friday, November 16.

Next Thursday, Pilkington’s 1970s strike will feature in a rarely seen Ken Loach film at Chester Lane Library as part of the programme.

The Rank & File, based on the unofficial strike that took place in the 1970s at Pilkington Glass, uses a documentary approach to cover a wildcat strike among rank and file union members who were antagonised by the relationship between the board and union reps.

It will be shown on Thursday, October 18 at 7pm.

Though the film has renamed the business as Wilkinson Glass, the film does state that the events on which it is based took place in Lancashire in the 1970s.

Tickets are £4, £3 (St Helens Library Card Holders, £2 (concessions), or £8/£6/£4 for all three films.

Book tickets online at or call into any library in St Helens.

  •  For more information on the Take Over Festival programme, including appearances from actress Maxine Peake (in November) visit