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The Northern Faculty-Part One. Pendle, Lancashire. 4th-6th of March.

March 7, 2016

I recently got accepted onto a course being run across different areas in the north of England, which have received funding for various creative projects.

These areas have teamed up to run a professional development/pilot scheme course.

This will be run over several weekends until July, with tasks and discussions in between.

The first weekend was in the Pendle, Lancashire area, which was exciting for me, as it is around where my grandma, on the maternal side is from. (Clitheroe.) It was great to chat to her beforehand about going to visit near her childhood haunts. I also felt glad to be able to get back to my roots!

The course was held in an activity centre, and involved lots of discussions and activities.

Currently I am processing the information and planning my task before the next session

(Which will be held in Blackpool.)

The course of action, prompted by discussions from the weekend, will be to record stories and memories from various folk based in my hometown of Dewsbury-and do that in an approachable, interesting, imaginative and creative way.

An element of the weekend which was enlightening, was the two early morning walks, on both mornings. I have discovered that I have a keen hiker inside me.

The first morning walk was stunningly beautiful, with fresh snow from the day before still on the ground. A short walk along the road, then round the corner, then into the woods, which was like entering another magical world.

The second morning, most of the snow had melted, but it had started gently snowing. We slowly worked our way round an abandoned quarry, full of strange shaped trees. Although we were near farmsteads and electricity pylons, we felt like we were in the middle of nowhere- prompting conversation about the Pendle witches- the famous and tragic history of the area, which to be seemed to weigh heavily on the landscape.

My great uncle always used to tell me about the Pendle witches and said my gran was one!

This morning I am utterly exhausted, after the discussions from the weekend, but

yesterday afternoon, we spent time in the art library of the excellent organisation In Situ,

based in Brierfield. The research I did there, helped me to collect and note down my thoughts.

It is too early to say how my creative work might develop from this course, but it is an exciting beginning.






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