From opera singers, African drum circles and alternative puppetry, to brass bands, spoken word and original live music, there’s a unique experience in Prestwich to delight all cultural tastes.

Like its mythical namesake, Shangri La! is a Utopian night out for those who crave quality arts entertainment – and a big slice of the unexpected.

The brainchild of friends Jo Haydock, Dave Heald and Debbie Wells, the not-for-profit nights have become massively popular, and 16 years after they began, the line-ups they deliver remain as eclectic as ever.

“Back in 2007, there wasn’t a lot going on entertainment wise in Prestwich. It was nothing like the bustling hub it is today. So instead of just moaning about it, we decided to do something positive,” explained Jo.

“The three of us have varied interests and we came up with the idea of a night out that would cater not just for us, but for the whole demographic of Prestwich.

“It clearly connected with people. Our mission has always been to promote new talent and provide a cracking night out. We try and put together a diverse and assorted line-up – so if one act doesn’t appeal to you, we can guarantee the next one will. There’s always something fresh to discover.”

Known for its friendly and unpretentious atmosphere, Shangri La! operates from the Carlton Club on Bury Old Road, having outgrown its previous bases in Prestwich’s Church Inn and Church Institute.

“We get around 100 people ranging in age from 18 to 80. It’s very down to earth, and all are welcome. We get a lovely crowd, and everyone is too busy having a good time to worry about appearing ‘cool’,” said Jo.

“The Sunday Times recently said Prestwich was the best place to live in Greater Manchester, and Shangri La! more than demonstrates that there’s no need to travel into Manchester city centre to access quality entertainment.”

The Autumn Shangri La! will feature Mancunian performance poet Dave Viney; up and coming indie band Cardboard Shoes, the unique song writing talent of Gideon Conn and the ‘doyenne of erotic fiction’, Pamela DeMenthe.

Friday 20 October from 8pm. Carlton Club, 279 Bury Old Road. £10 cash-only on the door.