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Friday, 16 March 2012

Senior BEE's at Hoxton Hall

Last Friday the Senior BEEs were taken on an amazingly detailed tour of an atmospheric Victorian music hall theatre - Hoxton Hall. After a warm welcome from Lorna McGinty, Hoxton Hall’s Education and Heritage Co-ordinator, the BEEs met with Anthony Burton a Hoxton Hall trustee and expert on the history of the building who shared his knowledge with the group. Anthony described the history and architecture of Hoxton Hall and took the BEEs out onto Hoxton Street to see the building in its local context. He explained how the building has evolved and adapted over the last 150 years from a music hall to Quaker settlement to the vibrant youth and community arts organisation that it is today.

After the focus on the past, the BEEs had a chance to glimpse the future at Hoxton Hall as contractor Andy Massey showed the group around refurbishment works which are currently in progress. The visit ended with an opportunity for the BEEs to give their ideas for future activity plans at Hoxton Hall. The BEEs are looking forward to re-visiting in June to see a restored Hoxton Hall as it prepares to entertain, support and educate local people for another 150 years.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Engaging Communities

Last week Janet delivered a CPD session on ‘Engaging Communtiites in the Design Process’ to an audience of 70 architects from Jestico & Whiles.  Following a discussion about why it is important to engage communities, Janet took the architects through the process of engagement that the Building Exploratory has developed and successfully delivered over a number of years.   
 Students from Sebright School at Heatherwick Studio, for the Lord Mayors Show 2009

Janet illustrated how we  uses a variety of resources to encourage our audiences to contemplate the nature of change in the local area.    She also explained how, through providing opportunities for discussion with a wide range of built environment professionals and stakeholders, audiences gain a broader understanding of the complexity of issues affecting their local urban landscape.  Using ‘Exploring Adventure’ and ‘Arundel Square’, as case studies, Janet illustrated some of the creative techniques that are essential to the Building Exploratory’s work to enhance audiences’ experience and investigations of architectural places and spaces.  A lively question and answer session followed.  

For more information, contact Janet Clark education@buildingexploratory.org.uk

Errect Architecture and the Building Exploratory - Kilburn Grange,  Exploring Adventure 2010

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

My Haggerston

The Building Exploratory is delighted to be a part of ‘My Haggerston’, a new community engagement project, funded by HLF, to research the fascinating heritage of the ward.  ‘My Haggerston’ is to be delivered by Discover Hackney, a partnership of ten heritage and built environment organisations which include the Building Exploratory, Hoxton Hall, the Geffrey Museum, Every Generation and the Hackney Society.  

The project will see 40 volunteers uncover the rich heritage of Haggerston in four areas: architecture, homes and celebrations, leisure and culture and family history, which will then be interpreted for local communities through and exhibition, digital resources and activities for local school children, young people, families and community groups.  

The Building Exploratory is excited to be leading on the architectural strand of the project which will involve volunteers photographing and researching the listed buildings in Haggerston, of which there are over 100.  The project got underway last week, with volunteer recruitment events at the the Building Exploratory and the Geffrey Museum.  The Building Exploratory has been commissioned by Discover Hackney to deliver the volunteer training programme, and we are really pleased to be able to share our extensive experience in this area with the partnership.  Click here for more information.