Friargate’s Festive Season Guide

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If you’re in the Preston area over the next few months make sure you grab your coat and head to the city for some unmissable experiences. From markets to live shows there’s plenty of things to do this festive season in the Preston area.

Here are some of our top suggestions:

Markets and shopping

Festive Shopping Evening | Lime Bar Lounge


Come along for a spot of Christmas shopping from local businesses as well as some festive drinks and nibbles. This is located Penwortham, Preston

Christmas Craft and Food Fair | UCLan Students’ Union


As well as a great way to get in some Christmas shopping, this craft and food fair also has plenty of tasty snacks and drinks as well as a free winter wonderland event once all the shopping is over.

Etsy Lancashire Christmas Market | People’s Production Lab


Browse the stalls for some one-of-a-kind gifts and homeware before enjoying refreshments, street food, and Christmas entertainment.

Christmas Fair | Town House Coffee and Brew Bar


Find some great gifts and Christmas decorations created by local artists.

Live shows

Cinderella | Charter Theatre


It isn’t Christmas without a family pantomime and this year a magically festive performance of Cinderella is taking to the stage in Preston. Follow the iconic fairytale of rags to riches, with Jade Natalie taking the title-role and Phil Walker stepping into the shoes of Buttons.

Alladin | Worden Park

3 JANUARY 2019

ITS PANTOMIME TIME! Aladdin the traditional family pantomime, lots of fun, frolics and rhyme. Bring all the family for a fab, fun time! The Genie and the Magic Lamp, Aladdin is a hero and the champ. The Genie is set free after doing his best, book your tickets NOW if you wish to know the rest!


Head into Manchester for the UK’s best Christmas Markets!

A 40 minute direct train from Preston to Manchester to witness the cities award-winning Christmas Markets offering mouth-watering international food, drinks and delicately crafted Yuletide gifts in the heart of this buzzing city. The main hub is at the Town Hall but there are markets scattered throughout the city as well as ice skating rinks.

Santa cruises | Riley Green Marina


Raising funds for charity, these two festive boat trips are one hour long and include tea, coffee, mulled wine and mince pies for adults and sweets and soft drinks for children. For more information visit the Facebook page.

Christmas FestEVIL | Blackburn

14 DECEMBER 2018

Wreck the halls’ this Christmas season as Scare Kingdom Scream Park presents its annual Christmas FestEVIL event on December 14th and 15th 2018. Featuring 3 scare attraction experiences, Christmas FestEVIL is the ultimate alternative holiday treat for fearless families, thrill-seeking adrenaline junkies and courageous kids!

Staying in Manchester? Check out our guide to all things festive in central Manchester.

Friargate is perfectly situated between the UCLan campus and Preston’s city centre. Breaking new ground in luxury student accommodation in Preston with its décor and specification, step into the atmosphere of a boutique hotel and be reassured that you are in the best possible environment when studying away from home.

Adelphi Square Redevelopment Given the Green Light

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Adelphi Square Redevelopment Given the Green Light 


Happy New Year from the team at Friargate Court! What a start to the year…

Preston City Council have granted permission for University of Central Lancashire’s £60 million Adelphi Square redevelopment, as part of the £200million UCLan Preston campus masterplan.

The planning permission was approved yesterday and work on the scheme is due to commence in 2019 with a provisional completion date of summer of 2020.

We are thrilled with this news and feel it will be one of the major turning points for Preston’s future.

If you would like to read more on the subject visit:

Portergate supporting students all the way

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Portergate Property Management showed their support of the School of Engineering at UCLan by inviting students and Lecturers on Tuesday 14th November to their latest luxury student accommodation development: Friargate Court, in the centre of Preston.

18 students from the Building Services and Sustainable Engineering B. Eng (Hons) degree viewed the Plant Room and listened to a practical account of the Mechanical and Electrical capability of the building. Simon Bennett, Applications Engineer from Adveco, manufacturers of the CHP Unit and Water Heaters installed, talked through the system that was designed by TACE Building Services Consultancy.

Friargate Court is a newly constructed purpose built 244-bedroomed luxury accommodation residence and is now the main thoroughfare between the city centre and UCLan’s campus. In fact it edges Adelphi Square – the epicentre of the proposed £200 million redevelopment of the Preston-based University campus. Portergate is one of the largest private investors in Preston currently and have made it their mission to make a positive difference as part of Preston’s continual evolution.

Anthony Jackson, Chairman of Portergate, comments: “We are delighted to continue our relationship with the School of Engineering. A relationship which we hope will encourage budding engineers to study at UCLan and assist on future developments around the city.”

Halloween takeover at Friargate!

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Our Preston-based student accommodation – Friargate Court – is spreading the festive-scare this October…

The team at Friargate love to celebrate Halloween and take pride in sharing this celebration with their residents.

Take a look at their work:

Keep any eye out for the next seasonal redecoration: Christmas!


Happy Halloween…

How Preston is gaining a global reputation for education excellence

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Congratulations from everyone at Friargate Court to The University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) after its rising global reputation received yet another really big boost.

We are delighted to see that the Preston-based university has been named in the Best Global Universities Rankings 2017 for the first time in its history.

UCLan been recognised among the world’s top 1,000 universities in the table, which was published by the American media organisation US News and World Report. UCLan is the 64th highest ranking UK institution and is 908th overall.

And it is the first time UCLan has appeared in the prestigious league table, which ranks institutions from more than 60 countries based on 12 indicators that assess their academic research performance and their global and national reputations.

The Portergate team here at Friargate Court, in Preston’s University Quarter, is also gaining its own international reputation just weeks after we opened the doors of the £18million development to students.

And we are also pleased to report that our new concept in hotel class accommodation is already attracting widespread interest from international students from across the globe – including China, Malaysia, the Gulf and the Middle East.

Richard Taylor, director of Martin & Co, our appointed Preston agents for the 244-room residence, has told us: “We’re seeing tremendous interest in Friargate Court from across the world.

“We were contacted by families in Jordan just last week and we’ve had student enquiries from Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Bahrain as well as China and Malaysia. There is a real buzz about what Portergate has brought to the city.”

There’s also a real buzz around its university campus. In the league table rankings UCLan scored highly in the ‘Books’ category, for the number of books produced by academics.

It also figured highly in the ‘Normalised Citation Impact’ section, which is measured by the total number of citations per academic paper.

The quality of research produced from ‘Space Science’ courses such as astronomy and astrophysics was highlighted at number 164 in the rankings table, according to a report on UCLan’s own website.

Vice-Chancellor Professor Mike Thomas told the website: “It’s positive news that we’ve broken into this list for the first time in our history.

“It’s a great achievement to be named among the world’s top higher education institutions and one we’re very proud of.

“This year we have featured in four major global world rankings and this is very encouraging for us. It shows the strides the university community is taking are being recognised across the world.”

This latest accolade follows on from UCLan’s recent excellent success in the The World University Rankings, QS World Rankings and the Centre for World University Rankings when it was named in the top 3.7% of all worldwide universities.

First look inside Preston’s most luxurious student accommodation

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The first images inside an £18 million residence purpose built for students, post-graduates, young professionals and key workers have been revealed.

Friargate Court is the largest building project in Preston in the past 12 months and has opened its doors to coincide with the 2016-17 academic year at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

The 244 hotel-class studios and en suite rooms have been built by Preston’s Eric Wright Construction for Portergate, a student accommodation specialist in the North West of England.

Friargate Court has opened onto the Adelphi roundabout, the site of UCLan’s ambitious £200 million transformation of the university’s public realm.

Bookings for immediate occupation are being taken by the on-site staff who look after residents 24/7 in a superior management style that has drawn praise from students and their parents from across the world.

Friargate Court is being seen as a ‘game-changer’ for the city’s University Quarter and complements the university’s vision for bringing ‘Town and Gown’ closer together.

Already Portergate has reported many enquiries and bookings from students and professionals eager to be the first to live in the most desirable student address in the city.

Portergate’s debut student residence, Riverside House in Salford, provided the blueprint for Friargate Court and it has been a huge success, selling out in only its second year since opening.

Portergate’s accommodation and hands-on management appeals to students who want more than the basic student living style and to their parents, who welcome the care and attention offered by the round-the-clock staff.

Friargate Court features fully furnished and well-equipped en suite bedrooms in standard apartment clusters containing between two and five bedrooms, a living area and large kitchen.

Standard, large standard, superior and studio apartments are also available to rent now through Portergate’s own website – – or through the Property Place in Manchester and local agents Martin & Co.

Portergate’s £18 million investment in student living in Preston is being overseen by managing director Karen Preece. She says: “We are thrilled to have opened Friargate Court and welcomed our first residents at an exciting time for Preston and the university.

“For now, we have some excellent offers for the best accommodation in the city and we have seen enquiries from both the UK and all parts of the world.

“UCLan is a vibrant, popular university, attracting students from all walks of life and the university has ambitious plans for making the campus even better.

“There are also many young people from all walks of life starting out on their careers and we can cater for them too.

“Friargate Court has now set the bar very high for high class accommodation and we are changing the game by also taking bookings from graduates, young professionals and key workers who love this style of city living.”

Portergate prides itself on the quality and levels of service and supports residents at its hotel-class properties receive once they move in and recruitment is underway for the best staff to run the residence.

Karen continued: “The tremendously high standards Portergate sets reflect the demands and expectations of today’s students, and in particular their parents, who expect their sons and daughters to live in well designed, safe accommodation while they enjoy their higher education.

“Everyone who works at Portergate is very passionate about what we do, with a total commitment to quality and that’s what the new team we will be recruiting at Friargate Court will deliver.”

John Wilson, managing director at Eric Wright Construction, concluded: “We are well versed in delivering student accommodation schemes, but to build one on our home turf and of such high quality makes this project special.

“UCLan is a gem in Lancashire’s crown and we’re proud to continue our relationship with the institution which started 13 years ago.”

University masterplan delivers the ‘wow’ factor

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The team at Portergate’s Friargate Court student accommodation in Preston has been bowled over by the vision for a new £60 million civic square and student support centre unveiled by the city’s University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

The design from world-leading architect Hawkins\Brown will help to totally transform the University Quarter and deliver UCLan’s ambition of drawing the university and city closer together.

And we’re looking forward to seeing how this stunning design will be turned into reality to create a vibrant new gateway as part of the ambitious £200 million university masterplan.

The design concept features a biodiverse roof, LED lighting underfoot, a pavilion café bar and a large glass façade to create feelings of light, space and airiness.

It has been created using the idea of ‘threads’ to connect the university and its city, drawing on Preston’s textile heritage and its future in aerospace electronics.

The result is a design filled with space, light and openness. The new public square will give a whole new dimension to this part of Preston.

These really are exciting times for the university, its student population and the wider city – with the project due for completion in 2019.

For more details of the design concept and the masterplan visit the university’s own website:

We also echo the comments of Preston City Council leader Peter Rankin, who said: “Everything is coming together to make Preston an even better place to live, study, work and visit.”

The students who are now making their home at Friargate Court are already discovering what Preston has to offer them.

They are also settling down to enjoy the benefits that living in our stylish new £18 million accommodation – opened last month at the start of the new university year – brings them.

The 244-bedroom development, which has helped to kick-start the regeneration of Friargate, is also aimed at employees in Preston’s high-tech manufacturing sector and Lancashire’s new Enterprise Zone.

Friargate Court is just minutes from the university campus and the centre of Preston.

Our high standard of accommodation and hands-on management appeals to students who want more than the basic student living style and to their parents who welcome the care and attention offered by the 24/7 staff.

Prices at Friargate Court start from £135 for a fully furnished and well-equipped en suite bedroom in a standard apartment containing between two and five bedrooms, a living area and large kitchen.

Large standard, standard, superior and studio apartments are also available to rent now through our own website – – or through the Property Place in Manchester and Martin & Co. in Preston.

Here at Portergate we pride ourselves on the quality and levels of service and support residents at our hotel-class properties receive once they move in.

Everyone who works at Portergate is very passionate about what we do, with a total commitment to quality – and like the university’s ambitious plans, we’re delivering the ‘wow’ factor.

student accommodation in Preston

I will survive! Take your pick of university life skills advice

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You’ve got through Freshers’ Week in one piece (just) and your student life is just beginning.

It’s a daunting but exciting time and these tips uncovered on the internet by the team here at student accommodation provider Portergate might just help make things go a bit smoother.

First off are these student life skills, which according the will help you survive university life:

They range from knowing when to call it a night to figuring out the washing machine – all essential to student survival.

And when it comes to your course there’s the valuable ‘avoiding tricky seminar questions’ tip.

The Good Universities Guide has also come up with its checklist of advice:

It includes these wise words which we heartily agree with: ‘Don’t be too hard on yourself’.

It might take you a while to get settled.  So don’t expect to get perfect grades straight away and try to enjoy your time at university while it lasts.

According to the Daily Telegraph “University is not just about taking a degree – it’s about learning to be an adult.” Stern stuff!

Check out the newspaper’s survival tips here:

It seems that everyone has some advice for you as you set off on the big university journey.

Parents think they still know best, and one of the best advice columns Portergate has come across over the years, still has to be from the Mumsnet website.

According the site, these were lessons “learned the hard way” by Mumsnetters during their own uni days.

They ranged from “be careful which clubs you join” to “know your limits” – or to put it another way: “When you feel sick, stop drinking”.

Other great tips include “read the instructions” – important when doing your washing and “adjust your expectations”, which is a sound piece of advice when you head off to the shops to do your food shopping for the week.

Another piece of sound advice, which Portergate continually passes on to students embarking on their university career, also makes the list. “Stick to your budget”.

And it comes as no surprise that the Mumsnet top 10 includes an instruction to “listen to your parents.”

The article quotes one of its mums explaining: “Before I headed off to uni my dad said, very seriously, ‘Well… don’t do anything stupid.’ It pretty much covers it all!” Quite!

Balancing your budget and making the pennies count is another theme for would-be advisors, with a host of tips to be found on the internet.

We checked this one out from the Independent website and found some sound advice to share:


As all students will find out – every penny counts, even when it comes to buying a round of drinks in the Student Union bar. Count those pennies now and at least you’ll avoid suffering a financial hangover.


UCLan picks engineering centre contractor

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The first major stage of the University of Central Lancashire’s £200 million new campus masterplan will begin in January.

Bam Construction has been appointed to build UCLan’s £30 million Engineering Innovation Centre (EIC) – across the university roundabout from Friargate Court, Portergate Property Management’s 244-room student and professionals’ residence that opens this month.

Portergate has led the way in the University Quarter of Preston with a new style of accommodation aimed at not just at students, but also apprentices and key workers in the city and surrounding enterprise zones and major employers.

The EIC will combine teaching, research and business space with construction expected to begin in January 2017 and complete for summer 2018.

Like Friargate Court, the EIC is also part of a new style of educational resource that does not just cater to undergraduates.

Karen Preece, managing director of Portergate Property Management, explains: “Both the University and Portergate recognise the changing world of educational provision and the lifestyle that goes with that.

“At Friargate Court we are offering accommodation for a wider range of residents providing homes for young people at different stages of their lives.

“Of course, undergraduates, mature students and overseas students are very important to us and we cater for them all very well here in Preston.

“But we also see a trend for young professionals who are not yet ready to buy their own home and are very much used to living in studios and high class shared accommodation.”

Michael Ahern, chief operating officer at UCLan, is reported in media outlet Place North West as saying: “Bam has extensive experience in the education sector and recent key projects include the University of Manchester’s National Graphene Institute, University College London Academy, and University of Arts London’s St Martin’s Campus.”
The EIC is the first major part of UCLan’s £200 million new campus masterplan. Funding of £10.5 million has been provided for the project by the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership’s Growth Deal with Government. A further £5 million came from the Higher Education Funding Council for England. An application is pending with the European Regional Development Fund.

SimpsonHaugh & Partners is leading on the design in collaboration with Reiach & Hall Architects. BDP is providing engineering advice.

Friargate Court is taking bookings across all classes of accommodation from September.

Having a say on Preston’s new campus gateway

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More positive news surrounds the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and its vision to create a new £50million campus gateway in the heart of its home city of Preston.

The university has now announced that it is including the good people of Preston in the process of selecting the architect that will design the development. And the team here at Portergate and Friargate Court can’t wait to see what their input brings.

Feedback from the community will help inform the decision on how a new civic square and student support centre, part of UCLan’s ambitious £200 million masterplan, could look.

The whole process is also being carried out in conjunction with the prestigious Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

Earlier this year, RIBA ran an international competition which asked architectural practices “to submit designs which would deliver an excellent student experience and create a world-class campus”.

There’s now a seven strong shortlist of designs and, as the university’s website has revealed, they will go on display at St George’s Shopping Centre on August 8-10, and UCLan’s Foster Building on Fylde Road on August 11-12.

The university says that members of the public can have their say on the proposed designs, either at the events or online, before final judging takes place later in August.

In a statement the university said: “These events are a great opportunity for local people to find out exactly what is being proposed and help inform the final decision. The whole community can reap the benefits of this multi-million pound investment.”

UCLan Vice-Chancellor, Professor Mike Thomas, told the website: “The standard of the shortlisted entries is very high and we’re now looking to members of the public to ensure these designs reflect what’s important to them.”

Details of the plan are emerging and they are impressive. Combined, the new student support centre and civic square will be the same size as London’s Trafalgar Square!

The shortlisted designs can also be viewed online at where members of the public can share their views using the online form.

These are certainly exciting times for Preston. The countdown is on to the opening of our stylish new £18 million Friargate Court accommodation in the city’s University Quarter.

It will open its doors to welcome students from UCLan later this year. The 244-bedroom development, which is helping kick-start the regeneration of Friargate, is also aimed at employees in Preston’s high-tech manufacturing sector and Lancashire’s new Enterprise Zone.

The Friargate development is part of Portergate’s ambitious North West expansion plans. It is currently under construction by the Preston-based Eric Wright group.

Portergate’s successful Riverside House student accommodation in Salford has been a major success story and welcomes students from across the globe.