Popular Searches:

Keep up to date

Sign up today for exclusive offers and incredible experiences you won’t want to miss at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

Sign up now

Local Residents Train Up As Oral History Community Researchers

Local Residents Train Up As Oral History Community Researchers

Press Release 28/06/2023

The Voices of East Bank project kicked off on Tuesday 27 June, when over 20 people from Hackney, Newham, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest came together to attend a training session at UCL East on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The day’s training equipped people to become ‘Oral History Community Researchers:’ to go into their local communities over the next few weeks and to gather 3-5 oral histories about peoples’ lives. The project aims to capture stories from the East End, starting with an exploration of Cockney heritage, the diversity of language, methods of communication and senses of belonging. The project continues the work to build strong links between local people and East Bank, the new culture and education quarter opening on Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

The recordings will be accessible on a website dedicated to the project which is currently being built. The recordings will also be available at the Newham Archives for future research.

Lydia Powell, The Voices of East Bank Project Coordinator, said: “It’s been brilliant to see so many people here, from different backgrounds and with such different life experiences. This project is all about bringing out histories that have never been spoken about before.

It’s going to be really exciting when these newly-appointed researchers come back with all these stories and I can’t wait to share them with a wider audience.”

Ruth Holmes, Design Principal at LLDC, said: “Through this project we hope to connect people from grassroots communities from the local boroughs with the exciting organisations that are coming to the Park as part of East Bank, and we hope this project will be a starting point for future collaborations.”

Robert Seatter, Head of BBC History, said: “The BBC is delighted to be working with community partners on the Voices of East Bank project, and will be looking for ways to platform the stories collected - on radio and online as well as in the public space itself - so they can be shared and enjoyed more widely.”

The project is funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and is being run in partnership by the London Legacy Development Corporation and UCL East. Participants received a day of full training on 27th June, with introductions from Louise Hale aka Curly Wordy and Suresh Singh aka Cockney Sikh, Jess Conway from Newham Archives and Robert Seatter from BBC History. UCL’s Public History team on oral histories and how to use audio recording equipment. Audio recording equipment will be provided to the Researcher by UCL and support will be provided from the Project Coordinator, UCL students and UCL’s MA Public History lead over the summer. Participants did not need to have any particular qualifications or experience for this role - only an interest in getting their communities’ voices heard and an interest in oral history.