Situated on the north bank of the River Ribble in Lancashire, England, Preston is known for the saying “once every Preston Guild”, meaning a rare occurrence. The Preston Guild week is celebrated every twenty years, with the next event due in 2022. The city center has undergone extensive transformation in recent years, but prominent landmarks remain, including St Walburge’s Church, which has the tallest church spire in England, and the Harris Museum and Art Gallery, which houses collections celebrating Preston’s former textile industry, local history and archaeology. There are several independent retailers in Preston, as well as a number of supermarket chains and indoor and outdoor markets. Eating out in the city is popular, and with pubs and bars open late into the night there is a very active social scene for expats living in Preston to explore. Preston has a diverse population which includes international students studying at the University of Central Lancashire. The university has extensive sporting facilities to the north west of Preston for students and locals alike, but the people of Preston have long enjoyed watching their local soccer team, Preston North End, play home matches. Preston is also close to the Forest of Bowland and the Lake District for walking and cycling, and Blackpool’s Golden Mile, with its beaches, seaside entertainments, trams and famous tower, so an expatriate living in Preston has a variety of activities to enjoy in northwest England. Expats living in Preston may wish to join InterNations, a global online community for expatriates of all nationalities, united by the common bond of friendship and affinity with others living away from their home countries. Members are able to network online to establish contacts for business and pleasure with other career professionals.
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Preston is served by Blackpool International Airport, with budget flights to European destinations, and Manchester International Airport, from which major global airlines operate. Preston is situated on the West Coast Main Line, with intercity and sprinter trains running north to Scotland and south to Manchester, Birmingham and London Euston. There is an extensive bus network in Preston, with several operating companies, and the National Express Coach system also operates from the central bus station. The city is famous for its Preston bypass, the first section of motorway in the UK, which opened in 1958. There are four motorways adjacent to Preston, including the M6, which runs north from the Midlands to the Scottish border. Relocating to a new country can be a lonely affair, but as an InterNations member, any expat moving to Preston may call upon the InterNations community for advice on relocating to the UK from those who have trodden the same path. Gaining helpful hints and tips can be very useful, and members are encouraged to use the InterNations forums whenever needed.
Preston is home to a significant part of the UK military aerospace industry at nearby Warton Aerodrome and Samlesbury. Engineering, electronics, telecommunications, distribution, logistics, and commerce are the main job providers in the city, closely followed the retail and service sectors. The University of Central Lancashire is also a major employer in Preston. Preston’s expat members have on InterNations the opportunity to meet and organize a social calendar of events and trips. InterNations members are able to enjoy the company of like-minded friends in the friendly city of Preston and beyond. And general information on living and working abroad is also available in the content section of InterNations, including in the Expat Magazine. Its many articles on a wide variety of topics should prove useful to seasoned and novice expats in Preston alike.