'My Arse' event will raise funds for iconic venue

The worlds of politics and comedy are set to collide at Salford Lad’s Club in March with the announcement that Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and actor Ricky Tomlinson will host a one-off event, helping to raise funds for the iconic Manchester venue.

It will be great to have Ricky Tomlinson visit our venue as a special guest

The two will be in conversation on the evening of Saturday 5 March in what will be an entertaining no holds barred chat between the two notable Scousers. The evening will also see those in attendance given the opportunity to ask Ricky questions. Those who would prefer to ask Andy questions are probably better off calling into BBC Radio Manchester.

All proceeds from the evening will go towards the Salford Lads Club building and projects for the club’s youth programmes.

A much-needed boost for an iconic venue

The event comes in the wake of a difficult period for Salford Lads Club. The iconic venue and charity was hit hard by the pandemic when it was forced to close. The building is reliant on opening to visitors and hosting events such as weddings and film crews, and like other iconic venues in the city, the lack of footfall has proven costly.

Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham And Actor Ricky Tomlinson Ahead Of A Fundraising Event At Salford Lads Club
Actor Ricky Tomlinson alongside Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham doing his best lurkio impression Image: Salford Lads Club

Speaking on the event, Leslie Holmes, manager of Salford Lads Club said: 

"It will be great to have Ricky Tomlinson visit our venue as a special guest and also to welcome back Andy Burnham. Andy and Salford Mayor, Paul Dennett helped us promote our latest 'The North' t-shirt, which has raised over 25k. Our campaign was part-inspired by Andy standing up to the unfair treatment of our region from the government. We are all looking forward to this first event of 2022 with Andy and Ricky and I wouldn't be surprised if 'The North' comes up in conversation!"

The Smiths Outside Salford Lads Club In Manchester Copywright Stephen Wright
The Smiths outside Salford Lads Club Image: Stephen Wright

The venue, which is entirely volunteer-led, will also open its rooms up on the evening, giving visitors the opportunity to tread its famous floors. Volunteers on the evening will be more than happy to take visitors around, including a chance to see The Wall of Names and The Smiths room. The latter now has two unique hinged panels, made to display pictures and post-it notes from fans.

Salford Lads Club is perhaps best known for its appearance on the inner sleeve photograph of The Smiths’ album The Queen Is Dead and despite the building’s name, the charity itself is named Salford Lads and Girls Club. The club was originally founded in 1903 by the Groves brothers and provides local young people with opportunities in arts and sport.

The club has provided a constant but nonetheless rare social provision throughout its operation and has seen thousands of people pass through its doors. As well as being a popular filming location through the years, the club has also amassed a substantial archive of photos, film reels, records and memorabilia.

Iconic Venue Salford Lads Club In Salford Manchester Credit Rept0N1X Creative Commons Body
The iconic Salford venue is volunteer led Image: Rept0n1x via Creative Commons

Northern Powerhouse 'my arse'

The evening will be a welcome trip out for proud Scouser Ricky Tomlinson. The actor, comedian, political activist and national treasure, best known for his role as Jim Royle in The Royle Family, Tomlinson is said to have been top of Burnham’s list of people to interview.

The event follows fundraising efforts last summer which saw Burnham and Salford Mayor Paul Dennett promote Salford Lads Club’s run of The North t-shirts which were produced to help raise funds to cover the £90k loss in income caused by the pandemic.

Tickets for the intimate event are priced at £25 each and will be available on Thursday 3 February at 10am. Salford Lads Club will open its doors for the event at 6.30pm, with the event starting at 8pm and finishing at 9.45pm. The bar will be open from 6.30pm until 10.30pm.

Salford Lads Club, St Ignatius Walk, Salford M5 3RX 

Follow Davey on Twitter & Instagram: @dbretteats

Header image: Rept0n1x via Creative Commons

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