It’s been a pleasure to work with folks from Woodview Community Association, Chiswick House and Latimer Gardens. We also worked with local people at St Lukes community centre and Kerria Court to gather a rich bank of vivid memories of life in this historic part of Birmingham – in the back-to-back houses, as well as in the short-lived Lee Bank and Woodview Estates. You can hear some of these reminiscences as audio soundtrack to our project films.
We explored new ways of bringing history to life with students at Birmingham Metropolitan College. Our small team worked hard, took risks, learned new skills and produced wonderful work, discovering, researching, acting, drawing, and singing. They were filmed by Martin McNally of Reel Access.
Working with the team at the city’s Archive Service, we researched local residents including anti-slavery campaigner Joseph Sturge, who lived on Wheeley’s Road, artist Joseph Southall, the Cadbury brothers as well as local suffragettes. Lots more at www.connectinghistories.org.uk
We spent a fascinating and memorable afternoon at the Archive just before it closed in preparation for the move to the new Library of Birmingham. Sadly, icy pavements meant that some participants couldn’t join us for the trip. Archive staff had selected historic photographs, documents, maps and legal documents to explore.
We read Memory, a poem by Constance Naden, a Victorian poet who lived on Charlotte Road, and used it to spark reminiscence. Here you can read the collective poem we wrote in response as well as the original poem, Memory by Constance Naden.
And textile artist Sam Green ran workshops to make ‘history bunting’, reproducing archive photos to make celebratory bunting for the launch event.