FAMILIES are being invited to two of Northwich's museums as part of spectacular festival celebrating 'sustainability'. 

Throughout July, West Cheshire Museums and its partners are staging The Big Sustainability Festival at its four museum sites, including the Lion Salt Works Museum and the Weaver Hall Museum and Workhouse.

Events will also be taking place at Chester's Grosvenor Museum and the Stretton Water Mill in Malpas.

While entertaining families, the aim of the festival is to encourage sustainable everyday habits.

Events, inspired by #PlasticfreeJuly, include a touring eco exhibition; circus performances; eco storytelling, an open mic night and TED-style sustainability talks as well as a children’s competition, clothes swap events and numerous workshop activities and artisan fairs.

At the end of the festival, there will even be two free country dancing ‘eco ceilidhs’.

All activities are free, but some will require booking and in all cases, the activities are not dependent on paying to enter the museum (where applicable).

Northwich Guardian: Lion Salt Works Museum, located next to the Trent & Mersey CanalLion Salt Works Museum, located next to the Trent & Mersey Canal

What is taking place?

On July 23 at the Lion Salt Works Museum, in Ollershaw Lane, there will be an action-packed day of events between 10.30am and 5pm, including the arrival of the 'Earth Giants'.

Professional performers, the Barnton Circus, will entertain with exciting outdoor ‘climate change’ aerial acrobatic performances, inspired by the Museum’s collections.

Visitors of all ages will also have a chance to master circus skills at workshops taking place throughout the day as well as see the touring eco story exhibition.  

There will also be an artisan fair, featuring small businesses selling alternatives to ‘single use’ items and goods that have been creatively recycled.

Visitors are also encouraged to bring along plants from their garden to trade and so increase biodiversity.

There is no requirement to pay to see the museum’s collection to take part in all the free activities.

Parking is free and there is a free industrially-themed play area on site, as well as a butterfly garden, café and gift shop.  

On July 30 the Big Sustainability Festival will have a spectacular free finale with two indoor, foot-stomping ‘eco’ ceilidhs from 4pm to 6pm and 7.30pm to 9.30pm.

This event will be suitable for the whole family - even those with no experience of Scottish country dancing. Booking is required by calling the museum on 01606 275066.

Also on July 23, the nearby Weaver Hall Museum and Workhouse, in London Road, will be hosting a variety of eco events between 10.30am and 5pm.

There will be an artisan craft fair as well as a Clothes Swap Event and an upcycling clothes workshop.

The festival’s huge ‘Earth Giants’, made by Cheshire College students, will also make an appearance during the day to remind everyone that climate change requires ‘big thinking’. 

A walking trail between the two Northwich museums will be available, with visitors encouraged to enjoy both attractions. Free parking is also available on site.

Councillor Louise Gittins, leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "This fun, exciting sustainability festival is full of imaginative and different events and will be a great way of entertaining children, at low cost, during the summer holiday.

"But it has a serious purpose. We hope it will inspire and empower everyone to put the environment at the forefront of their mind and make the changes that collectively will make a huge difference to the climate worldwide.

"We would like to make this an annual celebration of climate awareness, which can grow and develop over time.

"I would encourage everyone to make a note of the dates of these free events, so that they don’t miss out."

A spokeswoman for West Cheshire Museums said the group is grateful for funding and sponsorship from Arts Council England, Stagecoach, Encirc, Big Heritage, Eco Communities and the Stubbs Trust.

For more details visit westcheshiremuseums.co.uk/festival-for-the-future/