Each year Manchester Day Producers Walk the Plank pair artists with successful applicant groups and individuals to help realise participants’ ambitious creative ideas. 

Find out more about the artists we worked with in 2018:


Manchester Day 2018 Artists

Abbie Shoreman

Details to follow

Alice Wareham

Details to follow

Alison Duddle

Alison is a puppet and mask maker and director based in West Yorkshire. She worked for many years with Horse + Bamboo theatre as joint artistic director, and now is making puppets for TV, creating little collage puppet shows for people’s living rooms and giant pigeons for parades. She doesn’t have a website, yet!

Amy Hegarty

Amy is an artist based in Dublin. She has a degree in Costume Design, and extensive experience in working for film, theatre and parades. She is currently employed as head of costume and soft construction in Lambert’s Puppet Theatre, Ireland’s oldest puppet making company. She owes many of her skills and interests to the artists she’s met through Walk the Plank in the past few years. This is her fifth year working on Manchester Day. https://www.instagram.com/puppetfingers/

Andy Benfield

Andy Benfield is an outdoor artist, maker and producer who creates work that make people smile, wonder and marvel. His wide variety of previous experience includes the design of light sculptures and interactive artwork, producing community festivals, documentary making and stiltwalking! For Manchester Day 2017, his feet will be firmly on the ground as an assistant to the Parade’s Creative Director, a role that excites and inspires him. Andy is looking forward to helping community groups to make spellbinding and enchanting works for Abracadabra, whilst learning from the best in the business about how to make the marvel that is Manchester Day. www.travellinglightcircus.com

Austin Hewitt

Details to follow

Becky Bryson

Becky Bryson (1st BA HONS fine art) has enjoyed working as a community artist for the last 15 years. She works with a number of different companies across the UK, mostly concerned with out door parades and spectacle. She has worked on Manchester day parade since it began with a number of different community groups and schools. www.beckybryson.co.uk

Ben Cook

Details to Follow

Brian D Hanlon

Brian is a Performance Designer and has worked in a range of settings, from local community arts to international theatre festivals. His work includes design and production for spectacular processions of dance, rhythm and music through the streets, incorporating colourful parades, stilt walkers, performance promenade and site-specific sculpture. This is his 8th year running on Manchester Day, where he’s now worked with 40 difference community groups, helping them bring their ideas to life.

Bridget Hines

After studying Graphic Arts and Design and having worked as a graphic designer, print maker and community artist, I have been transitioning to working in outdoor arts, costume and performance more recently. I grew up in Bury where previous generations of women in my family worked in textiles and dressmaking; as weavers in the mills or designing and making wedding dresses for clients. I grew up in a sewing household, where my mother would make fancy dress outfits for me, giving me a love of performance and costume. I have been part of many dance and percussion groups, such as cuban salsa, reggaeton and samba, which lead me to carnival. Carnival brings all these elements together: dance, street theatre, costume, street music, and all the diverse cultures of our city, out on the street for all to see and enjoy. The textiles heritage combined with living, studying and working in multicultural Manchester and Leeds has developed into a passion for costume and outdoor arts. I’m developing my practice towards designing and making large scale costumes for performance; working on colour, dynamism and movement. I’m part of performance collective Manchester Wild Wuns and run art workshops for Celebrate Whalley Range festival.

Carmen Arquelladas

With a masters in Fine Art from Spain, a year of focused study in fashion in Florence, as well as having studied with renown clown and bouffon teacher, Philippe Gaulier in France, Carmen Arquelladas is full of creative knowledge and an extremely versatile designer. For over 10 years she has been working in the theatre world, developing a unique and precise eye for imagery on the stage. Starting out with El Laborotorio (SP) she designed set, props, costumes and makeup as well as played a key role in devising and performing in a variety of their shows. Since then, Carmen has worked on a number of different projects, including co-founding theatre company Teatro Pomodoro and making costumes for shows such as Potted Panto in the West End, as well as and designing set and costumes for Cabaret From The Shadows among others. She also makes a selection of clothing and accessories under her own brand Pelotadepinpon. Generally, Carmen works in collaboration with international artists on art projects ranging from theatre, youth projects, cabaret and outdoor events. This is her second year working on Manchester day.   For more info www.carmenarquelladas.com

Catherine Buckle

Catherine Buckle is a textiles graduate who has been working in outdoor arts for the past 6 years. Over this time she has gained a wealth of varied experience across parade makes, costume, puppets and props, alongside her work as a pyrotechnician and event crew.” 

Chris Anderson

Chris Anderson is a digital media, theatrical and carnival artist who creates large scale puppets, costumes, props and set pieces through his company No Eyed Theatre. Chris has taken part in many high-profile and community events which have enabled him to learn and develop new techniques in the field of street theatre, carnival and outdoor performance.  www.noeyedtheatre.com 

David Mason

David Mason is an artist and theatre professional. Trained and experienced in both visual and performing arts, David has been involved in many different outdoor theatre and carnival productions. David’s main art forms are puppetry, mask making and processional images also costume, prop and set design. He has worked on all Manchester Days representing Manchester School of Samba.  www.sambaman.org.uk

Elf Cartwright

Details to follow

Elizabeth Callagham

Details to follow

Enya Kosta

I am a freelance artist based in the North West, working within different mediums to create alternate reality Puppet Theatre Shows. I also work in the community to give a platform for people to explore their creativity, through workshops and exhibition installations. I have been part of Manchester Day Parade for 5 years now, cultivating my skills in large sculpture and puppet making. This was where I discovered the importance of outdoor events, how they bring the community together. My interest in side show theatre has taken me onto creating the theatre company Sisters Strange, where we travel the country providing intimate puppet and sideshow performances. Through my many creative outlets, the message remains the same, make them laugh, or make them cry but always make them question.

Fran Heap

Details to follow

Frankie Gerrard

Frankie is a Theatre set and costume designer graduating this year from the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts. She is interesting in being involved in all things with a fantastical element. Through the Elevate scheme opportunity, she is hoping to develop the creative making skills she has learnt during her time at LIPA and learn more about large scale outdoor carnival art! Her previous works includes designs for How to Disappear Completely and Never be Found at the Liverpool Playhouse Studio, Thing We Want at HopeMill Theatre, Manchester and Costume designs for a dance adaptation of The Little Mermaid.

Gill Burns

Details to follow

Hannah Bold

Encouraging participation and inspiring creativity. Creating work with people is what I’m passionate about. From carnival costumes and parade objects to large scale painting, pavement chalking and more. Engaging people in participation and creativity through arts workshop sessions and projects. Stimulating thinking, learning and sharing of skills and experiences to bring out our inner creativity.

Hannah Wadle

Hannah Wadle is a Social Anthropologist, whose work includes creative interventions and collaborative art. It is her third year of working as an outdoor artist and costume designer for Manchester Day Parade. She is the founder FairerTales, for which she produces community art, cultural events, ethnographic research, and workshops in Poland, Germany, and the UK www.fairertales.org

Hannelora Johansson

Hannelora is a sculptor, blacksmith and outdoor events artist working in metal. Her inspirations come primarily from nature, organic forms, and the beauty and character of the materials often illustrated through fire. Learning welding in 2002 by constructing sculptures from scrap metal, led her to study at Hereford College receiving a distinction in Blacksmithing and metal work. She designs and creates sculptural forms using repoussé extensively. In 2008 she started freelancing for Salford based outdoor art events company Walk the Plank, and has enjoyed being involved in their many projects both at home and internationally.

Hazel Coombs

After completing Walk the Planks Elevate placement last year, I have been kindly asked to return as an artist for this years Manchester day parade, which is really exciting! On my elevate placement I was able to shadow and help out some brilliant artists to help create some amazing costumes and structures. So I am really grateful and honored to get the chance to produce my own costumes this year, and be part of such an incredible event. I specialise in costume design and construction and love the weird and wonderful! Community parade and carnival work is something I really love as it gives me a chance to experiment and push design ideas. There is also a great sense of community, togetherness and shared fun and joy in the work created and the atmosphere on the day which is really exciting.  www.hazelcoombs.wix.com/costume

Helen Davies

Details to follow

Jamie Marks

I’m Jamie Marks and my passion is puppets. This started at an early age watching The Muppets. At 16 I started making puppets and sculptures by hand and to date I have made upwards of 25 of them. I am self taught and I use a wide range of materials from fabric to latex to ensure my puppets meet my exacting standards. I have developed many skills whilst making my puppets and feel these are getting better with each puppet I bring to life. Being a creative person I am always thinking about my next project, what new material or technique I can use and the challenges to my creativity this will bring. On display to the public is a puppet I created called “Lady Afflecks” and she now flies majestically within the walls of Afflecks Palace. Recently I made a life size dog which was used in the Altrincham Garrick’s production of “Goodnight Mr. Tom”. My passion and drive is to bring my creations to life “larger than life” in fact, featuring them in my online you tube feed “Wolfe Rants” where Wolfe has lots to say for himself. http://jamaniace.wix.com/jm-puppets

Jasmine Walne

Jasmine Walne is an abstract artist and surface designer living and working in Manchester. She graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in Textiles in Practice, and has since won the Albert Gubay scholarship. From there, she has opened her own shop and studio in Walkden; she uses the space to run workshops and sell her products. She produces design-led contemporary greetings cards, prints and original artwork as well as facilitating art and design workshops. She facilitates workshops for the general public alongside working in the arts for wellbeing sector, using art and creativity as a tool to help people. In her own practice, Jasmine is fascinated by colour and form; and how the two can be combined to create beautiful design. She uses a combination of hand and digital processes in her practice, including traditional printing and drawing techniques and modern digital technologies to create unique outcomes. www.jasminewalnedesign.co.uk 


Jessica Rost

Jessica is a sculptor, a director, a maker and a performance artist. She works mainly in metal and mixed media -welding, carving, assemblages and textiles- creating installation, sculpture, public art, unique costumes, large puppets, extraordinary art bikes and processional structures. She’s also a freelance producer and director: devising and directing for street theatre, outdoor spectacles, happenings, and events; often working in collaboration with other artists and organisations.​ Jessica was the Artistic Director and lead maker at Festive Road CIC, 2008-2018, where she created some amazing costumes, sculpture, street theatre and large scale puppetry. http://www.jessicarost.co.uk/

John Brooking

John has a wide range of theatre successes to his name including his nine years at Alton Towers as show designer, creating parades, magic shows and ice shows, including Peter Rabbit on Ice. John has a wide range of theatre successes to his name including his nine years at Alton Towers as show designer, creating parades, magic shows and ice shows, including Peter Rabbit on Ice.John a has a wide portfolio of productions to his credit, the most recent being for the Lichfield Garrick Studio where he has designed Ladies Day, The Entertainer , The Blue Room and Haunting Julia, Educating Rita and September in the Rain. Haunting Julia subsequently transferred to the Riverside Studios in Hammersmith and a national tour. John has designed costume and set for Lichfield Garricks acclaimed productions of A Christmas Carol, Alice in Wonderland, Snow White and the Magic Mirror and Cinderella and Jack and the Beanstalk at the Lichfield Garrick Theatre. He is now designing for Wolverthampton’s Grand Theatre. John has exhibited at the V&A as part of the British Theatre Designer Associations exhibit www.johnbrooking.co.uk

Jonny Quick

Word Up! Jonny trained in Theatre Design and works as an artist, maker, performer and puppeteer. He enjoys taking on diverse and varied projects in street, theatre and community arts. Jonny is very excited to collaborate with the Malayalee community this year to bring their vision and energy to the streets of Manchester.

Julian Taylor

I have been an artist, sculptor and designer for over 30 years, working mainly in Liverpool and the North West. I use a variety of materials, with a focus on metal and wood (from a sustainable and local source), and take pride in completing projects on time, on budget and to the brief.I work with clients from both the public and private sector and also offer full-build services for other artist’s designs. I have completed projects of all sizes, from commissions for interior decoration to the manufacture of the internationally renowned Superlambanana. Liverpool city council and the Hillsborough families Support for the Band of Light. My work is expressive and visually appealing whilst I take pride in being a craftsman who demands the highest possible standards of materials and manufacture. Previous clients include Liverpool’s Bluecoat Chambers, Tate Liverpool, GQ Magazine, the National Wildlife Centre, the Unity Theatre and rock group The Zutons. http://www.artistjuliantaylor.com  

Laura Lomax

Laura Lomax is an award-winning production designer for theatre, film and events. Based in the UK, Laura’s portfolio of work also encompasses AV design, visual art, directing & producing. Laura trained at LIPA, and has collaborated with numerous companies such as Punch Drunk, Liverpool Biennial, Hope Street Ltd and Sell A Door. Her set designs & installations have been seen in the Everyman, Unity Theatre and the Bluecoat, and her AV design clients include the Kaiser Chiefs, Riverside Studios and Arts Depot in London. Laura has production design credits for music videos with LMA-winner Natalie McCool, and has been featured in Art in Liverpool for her interactive art installation ‘The Lissajous Machine’. Laura’s directing credits range from “Mixed Media”, screened at FACT as one of the top 10 independent films of 2012, to films showcased at festivals including Prime Cuts and Threshold, as well as music videos premiered on Get Into This and on TV internationally. Her work as a producer includes “Lamb”, gold award winner of the “It’s Liverpool on Film” competition and the shortlisted Film Four Scene Stealers entry “This Is England?’ www.lauralomaxdesign.com

Lauren Moore

Lauren specialises in costumes and puppets with a focus on community engagement. She grew up attending festivals such as Streets Ahead where she developed a love for outdoor arts and street theatre. She became involved in carnival during her Jewellery and Textiles Design degree after being invited to a samba dance class by her friend. After graduation she began making costumes for Manchester School of Samba, where she is an established dancer, and jumped head first into the world of large-scale illuminated puppetry after she became a lead artist for Global Grooves’ ‘Creating Carnival Illuminated’ programme. Her focus is to make visually stunning work that fosters an emotional connection with the wearer and audience. Lauren has lead local and international workshops in carnival making techniques. She is passionate in her love of carnival and the empowerment it brings to communities. She strongly believes that creativity has the power to transform lives and endeavours to inspire people to develop their own creative practice. www.laurenmoorearts.com 

Lynne Duric

 Visual Artist/Designer. My practice ranges from the painting of watercolour landscapes ‘en plein air’ and life drawing to graphic design and designer-making for arts projects and outdoor theatre. I have created a catalogue of commissions and exhibitions since graduating in the 1980’s. Working collaboratively for Manchester Day Parade offers an exciting exchange and a rewarding challenge. Twitter.com/mywatercolours

Mica Bellemy

Details to follow 

Molly Hawkins

Molly Hawkins is a UK based visual artist, specialising in murals, puppetry & theatre design. Her work features world wide, across India, Europe & Mexico. She studied Theatre and Performance Design at LIPA. Molly’s work uses bright colours and a range of cultural references to create characters, scenes and narrative. Molly has created Puppets for Carnivals in India, Toulouse and various UK festivals, including Glastonbury. www.mollyhawkins.weebly.com

Naomi Parker

Naomi Parker is a Costume Designer and Maker based in Leeds. She has been involved in every Manchester Day Parade so far.This year she is collaborating with Artist Kevin Carroll on a lead image for the parade, costumes for Jelly Dance and mobile structures with Simply Cycling all based on an Antarctic theme.  Examples of her work can be found via the following link: https://www.flickr.com/photos/39417128@N04/albums

Owen Gaynor

Owen Gaynor is one of the co-directors at The Circus House CIC and a performer in his own right with Circus Diaspora. With a wealth of experience creating circus performances with community groups, professionals and all in between he is always ready to bring his unique understanding of his art form the Manchester Day celebrations. https://www.thecircushouse.co.uk/

Rebecca Long

My interest lies in the relationship between materials and the space in which they were used. The design of small functioning objects is at the core of my works along with the re-appropriation of space in cities; how a building or object can be altered to host a new narrative. Often in my work, I expose the functional past by locating essential, sometimes overlooked structures within the architecture and emphasising the object or mechanism on a much larger scale. Using relative materials to form the ‘rough and ready’ aesthetic of these pieces allows the stages of construction to be noted.

Rebecca McGory

Details to follow

Rory Lynch

Details to follow

Rose Miller

Rose Miller is a visual artist. Working predominantly in the medium of free hand machine embroidery, her work draws from the natural world from inspiration.Originally from Brighton, she now lives in Manchester and is currently working freelance in prop making, puppetry, carnival and community arts. rosemillermakes.com

Ruta Stasevicute

Ruta graduated from Theatre and Performance Design (BA) course at Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts (LIPA) in 2011 with an award for Creative and Technical Excellence. During her studies she fell in love with puppetry as well as stage design. Since graduating she has worked on numerous projects with Lantern Company making and performing illuminated giant puppets; taking some of them to as far as Hong Kong. Ruta has also worked as an artist/ maker on Manchester Day with Walk the Plank, and has made puppets and props for Just So, Festival No.6 and Fire in the Mountain festivals; as well as theatre shows and short films. She had her puppets exhibited in Vilnius Puppet Theatre, Lithuania. Her work as set and costume designer includes “Blue Stockings”, “Arabian Nights”, “Mater and Margarita”, “Inspector Norse” and “Romeo and Juliet”.

Ruth Jones

 Ruth Jones trained at Laban/Trinity, Temple University MA Dance Dept, Philadelphia, and The Cunningham Dance Studios, New York. Ruth is first and foremost a contemporary dance artist. She specialises in Outdoor, Sited and Site-Specific dance, Parade, Mass Movement and community dance. She has choreographed for every Manchester Day, since inception and in latter years has taken the role as a lead artist (including choreographing the Mass Movement, Eureka Moment in 2016). Additionally, working with Walk The Plank, Ruth has choreographed Pride Parade 2016 and 2017, Sma Shot Parade in Paisley in 2015, 2016 and 2017, Halloween Festival 2015, 2016 and 2017. She has also delivered Elevate and other Masterclasses, in parade work. Ruth, as well as choreographing her own outdoor Axial Dance shows, such as Tea Club and Trixie Go Cycling, works for other companies such as Avanti Display (choreographing many versions of Hydromania over the years) and Invisible Dust ( Kasia Molga’s Human Sensor and Coral Love Story) https://twitter.com/choreoruth In addition to the above, I am engaged in dance and arts project management.

Samantha Airey

Samantha Airey is a freelance costume and performance designer based in Liverpool. Graduating from Edge Hill University with First class Honours in Theatre Design, with prominence with Immersive theatre and costume design for character. Samantha’s portfolio touches on various performance and artistic types, such as site specific performance, immersive theatre, digital imagery and costume for film. Samantha discovered specialist training when studying abroad on exchange to Aalto University of Arts in Finland, where she premiered a short Swedish film with role of costume designer. Samantha partook in Hope Street Ltd’s Emerging Artists programme with the role of Designer and Maker. Undergoing several large scale productions in up to 20 different locations indoors and outdoors as well as the studio based. Samantha is keen to continue to work with multi-disciplinary spaces such as these to convey her distinct style with set whilst continuing to experiment with theatrical artistic practices. Samantha has a growing style with flare for learning new methods and creating original work exploring taboo topics and meaningful self exploration such as FGM, Mental health and historic events which in course have changed our presnt day outlook. She is a keen artist whos work reflects more than visual.

Sandra McCracken

Sandra McCracken is a freelance artist based in West Yorkshire. She has been working with the public in galleries, schools and communities for 20 years, including as a teacher of Art and Design/Head of Department and as a gallery educator at Manchester Art Gallery. Her work involves running collaborative art workshops for schools and communities, project management and curriculum development. In the last few years, Sandra has been exploring the world of outdoor arts, working predominantly with Handmade Parade and Plunge Boom. She enjoys making art works to commission and has been recently getting a bit over-excited about puppets and giant lanterns. 

Sarah Dicks

Sarah Dicks is a versatile Set and Costume Designer for Theatre. She also likes to dabble in Puppetry, Education and visiting all the piers the UK coastline has to offer. She graduated with Distinction from her Master of Arts in Costume for which she designed award-winning costumes for the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Events in Weymouth. She has designed for productions nationwide and specialises in Circus, Physical Theatre, Outdoor Events, Children’s Theatre, Dance and Devised Theatre. www.sarahdicks.com

Sarah Oxley

Sarah has been a designer, scenic artist and prop maker for 15 years, creating sets, costumes and all manner of weird and wonderful things for theatre, television and film. Sarah has designed many youth and community productions and her work has taken her all over the country. This is Sarah’s fifth Manchester Day and she’s very excited and ready and raring to go! www.sarahoxley.com

Sophie Tyrrell

I am Sophie Tyrrell, and for my design and performance work I now work under the name ‘The Strange Train Company’. Sophie Tyrrell’s expertise in theatre design, prop building, scenic painting, costume designing, story telling, clowning, and a stint as early years dinosaur expert at Manchester Museum more than explains why she now chooses to parade loudly beneath fantastic giant structures in public places. As the driver of The Strange Train Company she has engineered many successful outside art events in collaboration with other talented Manchester based creatives, including, for Manchester Day, The Circus House CIC. https://www.strangetraincompany.com

Thea Luckcock

Thea Luckcock is a visual artist/designer interested in the process of collaboration, play, and people. She has created interactive games for members of the public at festivals, on farms, museums and nightclubs, and enjoys creating playful spaces with visuals that extend out of the ordinary. www.theal5.wixsite.com/thealuckcock

Tony Watt

Through their work providing an up to 45 piece troupe for the Manchester Day Parade each year, from it’s inception in 2010 to last year, we Manchester School of Samba (MSS) have demonstrated our high production values in our interpretation of the themes using percussion and brass arrangements (Tony Watt), costume design and construction (in collaboration with Bold Art, Lauren Moore, but primarily David Mason, and his son Charlie Cragg , David being the Principle Maker and deviser of the construction method). We also gather ideas from the membership, which are amalgamated into the final designs. We then use the results of this work to perform for a variety of client commissions from local carnivals to product launches, school and corporate workshops to weddings, birthdays and club gigs 

Trixi Bold

Details to follow

Vick Podemska

I’ve graduated from a Performing Arts degree at Edge Hill university this year. As an emerging artist on the ELEVATE scheme for the second year I’ll be working with several established artists, some of which I’ve already worked with last year. Hopefully I’ll be able to build on what I’ve learned so far and explore the creative side of carnival performance. https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B271O_vEBNvieVpTMEJCcndOQk0?usp=sharing

Wendy Meadley

Wendy Meadley is a Cheshire-based freelance designer/maker for all theatrical occasions. One of her areas of expertise is flags and banners. Wendy has been using flags and banners to effect temporary space transformations for nearly 30 years and has been lead artist on projects making flags with a wide range of people. She has also created several large scale flag installations. Wendy is responsible for the site decor in the four squares for Manchester Day. www.flickr.com/workingwiththewind