Friday, 4 October 2013

Working Memories, Bakewell

IThe Day Centre run by Bakewell Age UK, has become a really important place for me. Run by the ever-enthusiastic Mary Ward, with help from tireless staff and volunteers, they have created relaxed, welcoming, vital service for older people in Bakewell and the surrounding areas. The groups like to be called 'members', much friendlier than 'service users' the term currently being used by many authorities.

I was visiting this week to present the members with their memory box, from my project working memories. The boxes hold hand bound books, featuring their reminiscences, photos from the wonderful collection at  my illustrations and marbled papers. Also included were a handful of DVDs which show the short films with recordings of older people sharing their memories of working life- these are also available on youtube.

The memory box has lots of space for the embroideries I made (that will be added once the current touring exhibition is finished) and handling material to be included relevant to the group to inspire further reminiscence and creative activity.

working memories books, Japanese Stab Stitch binding. Lois Blackburn 2013
working memories books, 'Cleaning the steps'. Lois Blackburn 2013

working memories books. Lois Blackburn 2013

I've had a wonderful time on this project, having the opportunity to try out new techniques, learn new skills, its been a privilege to meet and learn from older people who have lived through such different times. They spoke of hardship, boredom, friendships, expectations, families, and duty… with a mixture of humour, poignancy, honesty and often great affection for a time past. The group responded really well to the finished books, my only problem was I could have started it all again- created another set of volumes as new reminiscence was inspired by showing and discussing these books- it's another never ending project.....    You can view more at

No comments: