News, Activities and Stories from the Philip Astley Project have received not only local but also national and international coverage in all forms of media from the UK to Japan, Monaco to Australia, Canada to Brazil and more.

Here you can find some of the key news items and moments from the history of the project.

If you’d like to cover one of our events, or conduct an interview with Showman, Performer and Philip Astley Expert – Andrew Van Buren, then do get in touch.

For background on the Philip Astley Project, Download our Press Pack

Philip Astley Centre Public Opening Countdown

Philip Astley Centre opening countdown

Philip Astley Centre opening countdown has started, Tomorrow Saturday 9 March at 10.00 am the Philip Astley Centre opens its doors on Merrial Street, Newcastle Under Lyme, to the public for the first time.

The public opening will give you the chance to meet the team and take part in some of the free activities throughout the day between 10.30 am and 4.00 pm.

Pop into the Philip Astley Centre run by Philip Astley Projects CIC to experience all sorts of activities, including puppetry workshops, circus skills, art, exercise, film shows, talks and lectures alongside visiting exhibitions to compliment the static displays.

The Philip Astley Centre forms part of the growing cultural trail around the area, setting Newcastle Under Lyme, Stoke on Trent and Staffordshire into the cultural landscape of circus arts.

Plans for the Philip Astley Centre are to raise awareness in the life and legacy of Philip Astley also helping to bring a new type of energy to the town, raising footfall, plus providing opportunities for local artists and performers to collaborate and work together.

Andrew Van Buren says: “For a long time my family and I with the Philip Astley Project team have talked about turning Newcastle under Lyme into a cultural hub of circus arts, not only celebrating the history and academia of the subject but also giving opportunities for locals and visitors to learn the physical skills from ground based to aerial, the opening of the Philip Astley Centre is a massive step toward realising our dreams “.

Andrew goes on to say: “It is wonderful that we now have the visitor centre, the growing archive for research, and are already working on collaborations with other existing local artists, performers and encouraging new talent. It is important that we give opportunities to those who live here, so often creative spaces take people and their trade out of the town centres, we are incredibly happy that our efforts will bring additional people into the heart of the town, which has to gently help other local businesses”.

Already launched is the Philip Astley Projects schools outreach programme which combines the Philip Astley story with circus skills workshops, taking the sessions into schools and providing the chance for classes to visit the Philip Astley Centre. For more information click here.

Thanks to Levelling Up funding and a lot of donated time and effort the Philip Astley Centre sees the refurbishment of a derelict property into a bright and exciting new visitor centre for Newcastle under Lyme.

Updates can be found at: The Philip Astley Project Facebook Page & on Twitter also on the Philip Astley Project website: 

#philipastleycentre #philipastleyprojectscic #philipastleyprojects #andrewvanburen #mayorsimonwhite #newcastleunderlyme #vanburen #


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Philip Astley Centre Public Opening Countdown

Philip Astley Centre opening countdown Philip Astley Centre opening countdown has started, Tomorrow Saturday 9 March at 10.00 am the Philip Astley Centre opens its doors on Merrial Street, Newcastle Under Lyme, to the public for the first time. The public opening ...

Philip Astley Project on BBC Midlands Today

Philip Astley Projects Centre and circus skills workshops was featured on BBC Midlands Today News BBC Midlands Today News presenter Laura May McMullan visited the Philip Astley Centre where she met our own Andrew Van Buren who was performing one of ...

Philip Astley theme school assembly

This week Andrew Van Buren from The Philip Astley Projects visited St. Giles & St George's C of E Academy in Newcastle under Lyme, where he presented his unique Philip Astley school assembly for the children and teachers.  "Andrew spoke ...

Philip Astley Centre Ribbon Cutting

Philip Astley Centre Ribbon Cutting Event Philip Astley Centre is part way through its season of official opening events, all leading up to the official public opening which is on Saturday 9 March 2024. The official civic opening and ribbon cutting event ...

Key hand over for Philip Astley Visitor Centre

The Philip Astley Centre A world first as keys are handed over for the completed Philip Astley Visitor Centre. Philip Astley Projects CIC have been working hard to turn a dream into a reality, the opening of a visitor centre focussed on ...

Photography Award for Ian Knight

Congratulations to Ian Knight for his win of this photography award. Ian won the The British Photography Awards Architecture category. You will have seen Ian's images as part of our extremely popular Showpeople of North Staffordshire Exhibition which ran in Appetite's ...

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Shortlist for Cultivating Talent Award Last night the Philip Astley Projects Team attended the Keele University 'Breaking the Mould Awards Ceremony'. Where Philip Astley Projects CIC was shortlisted for the prestigious Cultivating Talent Award. This award is for the new or established ...

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Its a wrap for Showpeople of North Staffordshire Exhibition - Ready for next time Its a wrap! The Showpeople of North Staffordshire exhibition is out and packed away ready for next time. Deb from Appetite and our own Andrew Van Buren have been ...

Showpeople of North Staffordshire Exhibition is open!

Free Films and brand new Talks / Lectures The series of Free Talks, Lectures and Films is well underway in the Philip Astley Project CIC 'Showpeople of North Staffordshire' Exhibition, Staffordshire Film Archive are providing weekly films on alternating Thursdays at 11.00 ...

Showpeople of North Staffordshire Exhibition is now open!

Show People of North Staffordshire The Showpeople of North Staffordshire Exhibition is open! Appetite has supported the Philip Astley Project to deliver 'Show People of North Staffordshire' and are excited to host the exhibition within their Newcastle under Lyme, Staffordshire Newcastle Common High Street space. ‘Show People of ...

Andrew Van Buren Talk / Lecture about Philip Astley and the journey to develop cultural recognition

Andrew Van Buren illustrated Talk / Lecture. Brampton Museum, Thursday 29 June 2023 at 2.00pm A fascinating illustrated talk by Showman Andrew Van Buren, for this months Newcastle Under Lyme 850 anniversary 'Fascinating Folk' focus. Philip Astley's life and the rollercoaster journey to ...

Save the Date for Astley Homecoming Cabaret 2023

Save the date for Astley's Homecoming Cabaret 2023 which will be happening on Saturday 17 June 2023 in Newcastle-under-Lyme Town Centre.  Get your feather boa’s at the ready, we’re so excited to be bringing Astley’s Homecoming Cabaret to Newcastle-under-Lyme this June ...

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