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More than a Shop – Browns of Chester

8 June - 1 September

Coins Gallery

Local creatives have responded to the archive collection and people’s memories of Browns to capture what the department store meant to its community.

Enjoy a soundscape of reminiscence as well as letterpress words and posters inspired by Browns. There are also a few objects from Browns on display, including the concierge’s hat, packaging, staff badges and examples of promotional materials.

Additional information

Founded in 1780 by Susannah Brown, the department store, was a pillar of Chester’s commercial and cultural life. It closed in May 2021 after 230 years of continuous trading from Eastgate Street.

Members of the public were invited to share their stories and experiences of the famous store at a letterpress workshop and a reminiscence recording session.

Conversations were recorded and edited by radio and podcast producer, Geoff Bird, to create an entertaining soundscape, which you can listen to through headphones.

Letterpress artist Lisa Harman helped members of the public create their own letterpress words inspired by Browns. She has also created a set of letterpress posters inspired by the collection of Browns marketing materials from the archives.

This soundscape, posters and music composition were commissioned by the Cheshire West and Chester Arts Team as part of the Chester Rows High Street Heritage Action Zone funded by Historic England.



8 June
1 September
Event Category:


Grosvenor Museum
27 Grosvenor Street, Chester, Cheshire CH1 2DD United Kingdom
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01244 972197