Meeting Points brings together researchers from the University of Bristol (Patricia Kennett, Policy Studies and Antonia Layard, Law), an artist (Scott Farlow) and Streets Alive (Gaby Solly), supported by Bristol community groups including Up Our Street, the Southville Community Development Association, and Black South West Network to explore what it means to be neighbourly in two diverse communities in Easton and Southville and what benefit creativity might bring to residents’ sense of belonging and connection.
Click through to see the next project: Miss Behavin'
You could have a look at what's going on via the Meeting Points Facebook page
Here are some examples of the type of story you might see:
We’re really looking forward to our two Meeting Points street-gatherings on Sunday: Neighbours in Easton and Southville will be able to meet and chat, view their gallery of photos, eat cake, drink tea and engage with artist Scott Farlow's 'human canvas' and talk to Patricia Kennett and Antonia Layard from the University of Bristol. Gaby Solly will be inviting residents to participate in our 'low-tech interactive bunting’ to record what they like best about where they live and to chalk their footprints and signature on their street. Fingers are crossed for no rain...
Over the last few weeks Patricia Kennett from University of Bristol’s School for Social Policy Studies has been carrying out more in depth interviews with residents, in Easton and Southville, in order to garner a better understanding of the nature and impact of neighbourly connections today. We’ve also been meeting residents to talk about their street gatherings and the mobilehome gallery exhibition in a couple of weeks and planning on both streets has also started for their own street parties in September… We are grateful for the warmth and enthusiasm that has been shown by the neighbours involved for the project so far. Information on organising street parties can be found on the Streets Alive street party website at: http://www.streetparty.org.uk
'Our' street in Southville has tried seeing what a difference closing their road temporarily for safe children's play will make. (See the picture below.) Residents in Easton are interested also; www.PlayingOut.net has come up with a model to close streets to through traffic for short periods that they say makes them more inviting for residents of all ages to use. Children can play safely and neighbours of all ages get to know each other better. The children develop their physical and social skills and grow their independence... all essential to deepening the sense of belonging in their neighbourhood and to building their potential as responsible, engaged community-members of the future..."
Often the pictures that residents have sent for our mobilehome gallery exhibition come with lovely stories too:
Meet 'E' (in headscarf), who was unknown to 'J' (on the ladder) until J was locked out of her house in Easton. Although a complete stranger, E was kind enough to let J walk through her house, borrow her ladder to climb over her's and several other neighbouring walls, until J reached her own back garden and open back door. They subsequently spent ages chatting and found they had many common interests... It's great to be able to share these snapshots of neighbourly life - they open doors to the possibility of making better connections with others where we live... And to keep building those bridges over walls!
Find out more about other established and upcoming partnerships at Brigstow Institute.