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So Near Yet So Far-go!

I popped over to have a scout round Coventry’s Fargo Village over the weekend to bring you this little whistle-top tour and a snapshot of what’s to expect this spring…

The site used to be a car radiator factory so it has a real industrial feel. I really like the murals and graffiti, particularly this Indian elephant.

Located in part of the city that’s still undergoing considerable regeneration, it’s off Far Gosford Street which used to be part of the red-light district when I first moved from Cardiff to neighbouring Stoke in Coventry with my husband many moons ago – pre-children. We used to love nights out at the atmospheric Arabic restaurant Habibi close-by.

Market Hall

Fargo opened in 2014 with the aim of becoming Coventry’s answer to Camden Lock-Birmingham’s Custard Factory or Manchester’s Affleck’s Palace. Housed in the converted warehouse studios you’ll find a mix of shopping outlets, Dashing Blades barbers, and vintage stores. I picked up some lovely home-made dairy-free lemon curd from ‘not just jams’ . There’s artists’ studios including Abstraction, freelance Warwickshire painter Alison Johnson and comic creator Astral Gypsy, among creative work spaces like Izzy Loops’ furniture upcycling business and David Charles Jewellery.

Mixed media artists Abstraction are Charles Gallagher and Giovanna Sangiorgi Nicklin. You can see their portfolios on www.pictify.com/www.saatchionline

Izzy Loops sell Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, hand-painted furniture, handmade jewellery, soaps and home-made soft furnishings. They also run Annie Sloan Chalk Paint Workshops. The next one is on Sat March 11, 10am-1pm.

Outside there’s the Rock ‘n’ Roller Parlour inside a blue retro caravan, artist Ian Cook’s PopBangColour studios (he uses radio-controlled cars, car tyres and toy car wheels as paintbrushes), Twisted Barrel Ale Brewery & Tap House and Fargo Scooters. Lots tiny colourful containers house a variety of new business ventures from Let’s Animate to vintage shop Auntie Olive’s Attic, urban streetwear by Dosty Kloden and Nicky’s Totally Vegan.

This quirky creative village is close to the hub of Coventry University and attracts a big student following. Third year Event Management student Elyse Cadden is currently Fargo’s Events Manager. She was busy making coffees when I bumped into her in Unit 7, a vast open-plan warehouse space with upcycled bicycle wheels as ceiling lights, musical instruments on the wall, abstract art, African paintings and beautiful fresh flowers on big chunky wooden tables. It’s an ideal space for a restaurant.

Across the way is Positive Outlook, the cute Bubble Boba Tea House and Spangles American diner and candy store.

Positive Outlook

New Caribbean restaurant, Leave It to Esmie, fronts onto Far Gosford Street and was incredibly busy, but we managed to get a table mid-afternoon. It was well worth the wait (read my review here)

As the weather wasn’t great there were quite a few people milling around but I wouldn’t say it was buzzing.  I can imagine on a warm sunny day it’s a brilliant place to hang-out as there’s plenty of outdoor seating dotted around and cool vibes.

You can park for free at Paynes Lane Car Park (CV1 5LN) where there’s 97 places or in the smaller Far Gosford Street car park where there’s 18 spaces (2hours for 50p).

fargovillage.co.uk

WHAT’S GOING DOWN IN THE VILLAGE THIS SPRING? 

Vintage in the Village, Sat March 4

Vintage in the Village is back with more than 20+ stalls of vintage clothing, accessories and homewares, plus live performances from an Elvis impersonator.

#Open Garage, Pop Bang Colour & Coventry Motorfest, Sat March 4

Artist Ian Cook, who creates art with remote control cars, is teaming up with  Coventry Motofest 2017  for a display of classic & vintage vehicles.

Fire & Dust Open Mic Poetry Night /Comfy & Acoustic, Big Comfy Bookshop, March 2 & 3

There’s all sorts going on at this lively second-hand bookshop and cafe from a retro games night to a monthly book club and gigs. Last weekend Mark Morriss of 90s indie band The Bluetone played to a sell-out crowd. On the first Thurs of the month Coventry’s Silhouette Press come down with a bunch of poets for a free open mic poetry, 7.30pm and 3 musicians Daria Kulesh, Minnie Birch, Lilo’s Wall will be bringing their guitars this Fri from 7pm (£5-£7).

thebigcomfybookshop.co.uk

Craft Get Together, Container No 8 & Oshin Art and Craft, Every Fri 11am

Tactile Textiles Weekend & Albie’s Boutique Birthday Party, March 18 & 19

The Pod – Coventry and Fargo are holding ‘Hitchin a Stitchin’ on March 19 at 1.30pm as part of the Tactile Textile weekend with screenings of archive footage of textile in film and feature film and design project The Happy Film (2016) while you knit and stitch, facebook.com/events/1283962221696133. Help create a caravan sized tea cosy.

Albie’s Boutique is a small family pet supplies business inspired by their dog Albie who is celebrating his 3rd birthday.

Cheese & Chutney, Sat March 11 & Sun March 12

Fargo’s very own cheese festival with a room full of Cheddars, Stilton, Applewood, chutney, jams and port, from 11am-6pm on the Sat & 11am-4pm on the Sunday. £1 on door & free for under 12s.

Disappear Here Launch, The Box, Fargo Village, Thurs March 16

18 Artists & 27 poetry films exploring the Modernist/Brutalist superstructure of Coventry’s infamous ringroad including film-screenings, a Q&A with the artists & bar, 7pm-10pm. Free

Mother’s Day Market & Afternoon Tea, Sat March 25 & Sun March 26

Lots of gift ideas in the Market Hall and vintage-inspired tea room serving afternoon teas and Prosecco.

And for the kids…

Lego Easter Animation and Plasticine Workshops, Let’s Animate, Tue April 18

Make a short stop-motion style animated movie – think the Lego movie or Wallace and Gromit. Two workshops for ages 7+. Booking essential, £11 each (including booking fee), wegottickets.com/event/390721wegottickets.com/event/390722

letsanimate.co.uk 

 

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