Shops, cafes, and businesses across Leigh are set to be transformed into pop-up galleries as the Leigh Art Trail returns for another year.

The annual event, which commences on Saturday, promises an impressive array of painting, sculpture, mixed media and photography, all showcased across various venues in the town.

Over the course of nine days, places like shops, cafes, businesses, and even artists' homes will become host to numerous remarkable exhibitions.

The organisers are stirring up excitement as this year brings a series of new artists to the Trail.

Exhibits range from contemporary portraiture to "magical realism", capturing works that touch on various aspects of life including personal accounts of those affected by cancer to the cheerful adorning of discarded boats.

Wendy Scotland, who is part of the Leigh Art Trail, said: “It is wonderful to be back and the line-up this year is incredibly strong.

"I would urge people to get out there and see for themselves what remarkable creative talent we have in the area."

New to this year's display is oil painter Emma Foster whose stunning work will be exhibited at Brush 71 on Leigh Road.

She said: "I often portray the figure within nature.

"I suppose you could call my work magical realism as, although it is figurative art and almost photographic realism, it intertwines a touch of symbolism, a little bit of the unreal."

With approximately 70 artists showcasing in 50 venues, variety is plentiful.

Mia Davies, a photographer known for her evocative portraits, helps bring an important narrative into the discussion.

"I want to bring cancer to the discussion, raising awareness and hopefully making it less of a taboo conversation topic," said Mia, whose works can be seen at Chalkwell Hall.

More to see includes Craig Hallums’ narrative-inspired drawings and Peter Bowen’s striking oil paintings, both finalists in the 2024 Southend Portrait Artist competition.

"I walk a line between attempting to truthfully represent what is out there and being open to marks that just seem to happen," said Peter, showcasing at Leigh Vintage Interiors on Leigh Road.

The Leigh Art Trail is set to run from July 6 to July 14 across Leigh town.

For the full map and more details, visit