participatory projects

living through change (2007-11)


Participatory Films

A selection of films from four of the six study areas incorporating resident images and commentary and a range of participatory approaches.


Hillside Estate, North Huyton

After a number of years in decline, Hillside, along with other nearby estates, was included in a major redevelopment programme which began in 2004. This involved the decanting of residents, clearance and rebuilding. Repeated delays in the programme resulted in partial clearance and dereliction alongside newly built properties often occupied by incomers.

Films focusing on key explore key themes raised by the research project were produced incorporating commentary taken from one-to-one interviews and group discussions held with local residents in the autumn of 2007 and 2009.

'a real good business' - 3m 35s


Amlwch, Anglesey, N. Wales

Amlwch is a small town on the northern tip of Anglesey with an ageing population of just 1,400 people. It was once home to the largest copper mine in the world and its port was a centre of commercial fishing.

Industry has steadily declined since the 1970s, and the town has found it difficult to attract new employers. This has led to the many young residents moving away and local people having to travel for work.

Local regeneration and attempts to develop Amlwch as a heritage area to attract tourists have had limited impact, and the economic future of this town is uncertain.

On-street video interviews were undertaken with 35 residents on carnival day. Locations, issues and subjects for a film were suggested by local people and one-to-one video interviews held with 22 residents resulting feature length film entitled 'Fire, Earth and Water' that was premiered at a local venue in November 2008. The two free screenings included a Q & A with the filmmaker and researchers to gather feedback and further commentary.

'lucky to have a job here' - 3m 43s


West Kensington, London

The West Kensington estate on North End Road in West London was built in the early 1970s and contains around 1,000 homes. Nearby are a number of other council properties including the Gibbs Green and Clem Attlee estates.

The wider North End Road neighbourhood is a mixed-income district, with a diverse population comprised of both long term residents and short term or transient inhabitants.

A major building programme is currently planned for the area which may see the demolition of the West Kensington and Gibbs Green estates as part of a redevelopment of the nearby Earls Court complex.

The project resulted in a 60 minute film 'Crossing Paths: Life Along The North End Road' documenting life in this changing area through resident commentary, photography and filmmaking. Locations, issues and subjects for the film were suggested by local residents. Filming took place at shops, cafes and other locations identified by residents as ‘micro-community’ hubs. One-to-one video or audio interviews were held with 44 residents. The resulting film was presented at a number of venues where further respinses were gathered.The films available here are short issue based edits from the main film

'they'll destroy the community' - 4m 13s

Seraphina's Walk - North End Road market - 3m 34s


Oxgangs, Edinburgh, Scotland

Oxgangs is a residential suburb of Edinburgh that is well served by a variety of shops and amenities, with good bus connections to the city centre.

Originally developed in the 1950s to provide council housing for skilled workers, Oxgangs grew quickly. Three high-rise blocks were built in the early 1960's offering desirable views of the Pentland Hills and the city centre. The blocks however had severe problems with damp and quality of built that led to many of the original tenants moving out and a disruptive influx of new people into the area.

The high-rise blocks were eventually demolished in the mid 2000’s after years of complaints by residents and are being replaced with modern low-density, low-rise housing, a community centre and commercial units alongside improvements to the remaining council-owned properties.

One-to-one audio interviews were held with residents and the manager of the local community centre. The resulting soundtracks have been accompanied by resident imagery and video to create themed films exploring local issues.

'very, very sought after flats' - 6m 37s