Trail puts the hat on Denton

DENTON has taken its hat off to its heritage after a new hat sculpture trail was unveiled across the town.

The 15-monument trail – five of them giant – is now in the town centre after officially opening on Saturday, February 19.

And the list of unique creations will be there until Sunday, March 13.

The Denton Hat trail was launched at the Create Centre

The Hats Off to Denton scheme celebrates what made the town and shows what it can do.
Denton was a centre of hatting for 300 years and in Victorian times was home to 86 companies.

It is also the birthplace of Thomas Bowler, the man who designed the famous hat that bears his name.

A statue outside Denton Town Hall, called Tipping the Denton Linney, commemorates the link with the hatting industry which once employed almost half the town’s population.

All the artists involved are based in Greater Manchester and several are from Tameside.

Children have also been encouraged to supply their own designs through a competition for them to show their skill and inspiration.
Questions that helped get the creative juices flowing included what has been your favourite place locally? What three positive words would you use to describe Denton to someone who has not visited before?

If you had to pick your favourite local landmark or attraction (eg building, sculpture, venue or green space), what would it be?

What do you love about Denton? And What makes Denton unique?

Among the participating schools and community groups are St Thomas More RC College, Denton Community College, Denton Local History Society, Gibson’s Dance Centre, Denton Brass Band, Beavers and Cubs, The Create Centre and Tameside Air Cadets.

And on Monday, February 21, author and illustrator JC Perry popped into Denton Library to read a story and lead a draw-along.

Councillor Leanne Feeley, Tameside Council’s executive member with responsibility for culture, said: “I’m really excited about the Hats Off trail. It’s a celebration the entire town can get involved with, allowing people to work alongside some very talented artists who will give expression their ideas.

“Denton was once one of the main hatting centres not just in Britain, but the entire world, and the industry was a source of great civic pride.

“Hats Off provides us with an opportunity to rekindle that pride by showing that creativity and community spirit are still at the heart of what makes Denton such a great place.”

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