A chart-topping band is preparing for its first gig in Wigan after more than three decades in the music business.
Well-known Liverpool pop act The Christians will perform at The Old Courts in November as part of a lengthy string of UK dates running throughout the autumn and into next year.
Other news: Police appeal for help in hunt for wanted Wigan man
The band is best known for songs such as Ideal World and its cover of Harvest for the World and has had a total of five British Top 40 singles as well as seeing its debut self-titled album go to number two in the album charts back in 1987.
The group says it is planning to reward the Wiganers in its loyal fanbase who have always had to travel to Manchester or Liverpool to see them with a special night at the Crawford Street arts venue.
Frontman Garry Christian said: “I don’t know why we’ve never been to Wigan before but we’re looking forward to it.
“I mostly know about the town through George Orwell’s The Road to Wigan Pier but I’m sure it’s changed a lot since then.
“We like to get out into the provinces rather than just doing the big cities. It’s a refreshing change to come to Wigan because at city centre venues it can be a nightmare with parking and offloading the equipment.”
The group took its name from the surname of the three brothers who were in the original line-up, rather than because of any religious reasons.
After several highly-successful years in which they also recorded high-profile songs for charities they took a break but then reformed in 1999, a year after founding member Roger Christian died from a brain tumour.
They played unplugged for a few years before getting a full electric line-up together and have been touring and recording ever since.
The Christians are working on an album tentatively scheduled for release next year which contains songs dealing with topics such as social media sites like Instagram, the internet, mental health and technology’s effect on our intimate lives.
The group has a fiercely independent ethos, recording in Garry’s studio at home, releasing music on their own label at their own pace and ensuring there is plenty of time for live gigging.
Garry says that is exactly how they like to work as a band.
He said: “We put our albums out rather than having some big machine behind us telling us what we should and shouldn’t be doing. We love playing live and then in our down time in between gigs we get together and put some new material together to keep things fresh. It’s a great way of working and I don’t know why more groups don’t do it.”