We were really lucky to be able to work with local oral history expert Carolyn Clark on our Water Folk project this week. She is co-author of The Shoreditch Tales, a collection of memories and stories from Shoreditch that makes for a really good read, for anyone interested in the area, and in the changes that have taken place in communities like Shoreditch. Members of Ray’s Geezers and The Sharp End came to Laburnum Boat Club in the morning, Carolyn gave us a historical overview of the Regent’s Canal, and we set off in the narrowboats for a morning on the water.
In the afternoon, Carolyn and Anna from UP Projects went back to the Ray’s Geezers HQ at Age Concern, where, after a restorative turkey dinner they talked about their memories of the canal. What a brilliant group they are, and very generous with their time and experience, and no they don’t have room for any more members at the moment!
Emily and I managed a quick sandwich before the pupils from Gayhurst arrived and our afternoon collaborator Tim Olden. The focus of our canal research trip in the afternoon was chiefly recording the sounds above and below the water. We heard a lot of plopping and whooshing, some chug chug noises, a coot, who we nearly ran over by mistake and the merry sound of 30 children enjoying a boat trip!