Fashion guru Gok Wan, the Attenborough brothers (Sir David and Lord Richard), footballer Gary Lineker and even Joseph “Elephant Man” Merrick … all are strongly linked to Leicester.
But it's not just the Midlands City's residents past and present who offer an eclectic mix. Its galleries and art spaces are equally wide-ranging and interesting.
New Walk Museum & Art Gallery, New Walk, offers galleries including displays of modern art and Picasso Ceramics: The Attenborough Collection. It also boasts a new gallery, The Den, for the under-5s. The Highlights of the Modern Collection (in Gallery 15) exhibition currently affords a fascinating snapshot of post-1930 British artwork and further afield. Artists such as Stanley Spencer, Peter Doig and Sir Peter Blake are among the contributors to this selection of landscapes, portraits and still lives.
Pedestrian, Rutland Street, is both vibrant and much sought-after among professional creatives and emerging artists alike. From January 21-February 3, it is staging Narratives Through Art. This is a jointly commissioned programme from the YPOD. It is holding art workshops with four young people from January 21-23. Their works will be displayed from January 25-February 3. The exhibition's theme is mental health and substance misuse.
The Guildhall, Guildhall Lane, is one of the country's best preserved timber-framed halls, dating back 600 years and a hub of Leicester's flourishing arts scene. Pride of place currently goes to Richard III: Leicester's Search For a King, which runs until April 27, 2014. It tells the story of the monarch's life and times as well as the search for his lost remains. Four narrators tell how University of Leicester archaeologists last year unearthed remains, including what is believed to be the warrior king's skeleton.
Phoenix, Midland Street's cinema art cafe bar, brings art to all. Digital Makers Group is staged on the second Saturday of each month from midday-4pm. The free group is for anyone interested in learning how to use digital technologies, such as computer programming, 3D printing or Raspberry Pi to be creative and make new things.