- For other places with the same name, see Preston (disambiguation).
Preston is one of the few cities that has an "old northern" culture, with many words of the Lancashire dialect still in use. Preston is in The Duchy of Lancaster and The County Palatine of Lancashire. Preston is the only place which has a Guild. It comes around once every 20 years. The last Guild was in 2012.
Nearby Blackpool Airport has flights to Dublin, Isle of Man, France and Spain, while Liverpool and Manchester airports offer a world-wide service. Manchester Airport's services include London. Local airlines include Jet2, British Airways, British European, and CityJet.
Preston is a major terminal on the WCML "West Coast Main Line", and services to and from most major cities around the UK are offered by Virgin Trains. The Virgin website sells tickets between any two stations in the National Rail network, so getting to Preston by train should be easy, wherever you are.
Preston is well linked to the motorway network (M6, M61, M62, M60, M65). There are many reasonably priced taxi firms in the city - see By taxi in Get around.
There are two Park & Ride sites in Preston: Preston PortWay which is situated close to Preston Docks, and Walton-le-Dale. For more information consult Preston Bus.
National Express offer intercity coaches from most towns and cities in the UK, and many in France and Spain, while Megabus offers extremely low cost (£1 one way) bus travel to and from London. Other bus companies are available, and can be booked via the UK public transport gateway transportdirect which is a database of all British Public Transport, and can effectively link any two buildings in the UK with Public Transport using Postcodes
Preston has an extensive local bus network operated by Stagecoach Northwest and JFS (Fishwicks), details of which can be found via transportdirect.
Preston has a number of reliable taxi companies - the largest/most notable of which are:
- Millers Taxi (Preston & South Ribble) - +44 1772 884000
- Call-A-Cab (Citywide Service) - +44 1772 513344
- 24-7 Taxis Ltd (South Preston Service)- +44 1772 424247
- Hutton Taxis Ltd (Rural West Preston Service)- +44 1772 610610
- Paulstaxi, Train Station, ☎ +44 7710 336388. 7 Seater Hackney carriage with wheelchair access
Preston has several cultural attractions worth visiting, such as the city museum and Minster Church. It is also well known for its bus station and train station.
- Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Market Square, PR1 2PP, ☎ +44 1772 258248. M-Sa 10AM -5PM. Except Tu 11AM - 5PM. Collections of fine and decorative art, costumes, textiles, photography with displays about the history of Preston, in an impressive 19th Century Grade I listed building in the centre of the city. Includes a new gallery dedicated to ceramics and glass.
- Museum of Lancashire, Stanley St, PR1 4YP, ☎ +44 1772 264075. M-W, F-Sa 10:30am-5pm. Museum dedicated to the county's past set in an old courthouse. Includes Victorian and World War II exhibitions.
- Queens Lancashire Regiment Museum, Fulwood Barracks, PR2 8AA, ☎ +44 1772 260362. Tu-Th 9.30AM - 4.30PM. The largest military heritage centre in the North West. Dedicated to the county's military history. Includes memorabilia collections, an archive and library.
- British Commercial Vehicle Museum, King Street, Leyland, near Preston. PR25 2LE, ☎ +44 1772 451011. Describes the history of the British road transport industry. Includes historic commercial vehicles and buses.
- Ribble Steam Railway, Chain Caul Rd (in the docklands). Of further rail interest, there is a Preston Model Railway Club in Preston.
- Football - See Preston North End FC, the first ever team to win the English League (They achieved this without losing a game, also winning the FA Cup in the same year without conceding a goal) play at the 20,000 seater Deepdale Stadium
Preston is the home of the University of Central Lancashire (UCLAN) with over 30,000 students. The university has its roots in The Institution For The Diffusion Of Useful Knowledge which was founded in 1828. Subsequently known as Harris Art College, then Preston Polytechnic, then Lancashire Polytechnic, in 1992 it was granted University status by the Privy Council. The university is the fifth largest in the UK in terms of student numbers.
The university contains the following schools:
- Art, Design and Performance
- Built and Natural Environment
- Computing, Engineering and Physical Sciences
- Education and Social Science
- Forensic and Investigative Sciences
- Journalism, Media and Communication, University of Central Lancashire
- Lancashire Business School
- Lancashire Law School
- Languages and International Studies
- Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences
- School of Postgraduate Medical and Dental Education
- Social Work
- Sport, Tourism and the Outdoors
- Shopping - Preston has several shopping centers including The Fishergate Centre, St Georges and the Mall. There is also a Victorian Shopping Arcade located near the Harris Museum in the centre of Preston called the The Miller Arcade. Preston city centre is currently undergoing a £700 million redevelopment project.
Preston has a wide range of restaurants in its city centre, and many local pubs serve meals as well.
A popular and tasty local delicacy is butter pie, which is made with potatoes, onions and butter. Originally created for Catholic workers to eat on days when they had to abstain from meat, it can be found in many fish and chip shops in the city.
As well as this, outside the Fishergate Centre there is a small stall that sells 'corn floss.' This is basically warm sweetcorn that comes in lots of different flavours.
Preston has a wide variety of clubs located on the main highstreet such as Lava Ignite and Wall St.
- Travelodge Preston. Offers room rates from GB£20 per night
- The Novotel Preston South. Is a mid-priced hotel with restaurant, room rates from GB£45
- Holiday inn Preston A reasonably priced city centre hotel. It has a Restaurant, Bar and Lounge.
- Swallow Preston, Preston New Road, Samlesbury, PR5 0UL, ☎ +44 1772 877351, e-mail: email@example.com. Offers restaurant / bar and leisure facilities.
- Marriot Preston. Set in 11 acres of gardens and woodland, the hotel is just minutes away from the M6 motorway.It was also once a grand victorian manor house. This might be a more expensive place to stay but the marriot is internationally regarded as an upmarket chain of hotels.
- The Hotel Barton Grange. Rooms from £55. This is an exquisite four star hotel north of Preston, with several restaurants and a swimming pool with spa, Barton Grange is the perfect place for a high class stay in Preston.
- Best Western Garstang Country Hotel and Golf Centre. This country house hotel in Preston, Lancashire is not only one of the finest hotels in Preston, near Lancaster and Blackpool but is one of the leading wedding venues in Lancashire, also providing Golf in the North West, conference centre and meeting rooms in Preston and banqueting venues ideal for celebrations.
Preston is relatively safe compared with larger cities like London or Manchester, but it is still wise to use common sense. If you are alone, avoid wandering around quiet areas of the city at late unsociable hours. If you are approached by someone who is possibly drunk and who causes you to feel uncomfortable, it is best to avoid prolonged eye contact and excuse yourself politely. Avoid walking through residential areas adjacent to the City Centre late at night unless you know where you are going.
Preston Police are available on 101 for non-emergencies. In emergencies only dial 999 or 112 from any phone for fire, police, or ambulance.
- The area dialing code for Preston is 01772. From overseas, dial +44 1772 XXXXXX