‘The people before us’ project: exploring heritage and well-being in a rapidly changing seaside town

Hardy, L. and Williams, Ellie (2019) ‘The people before us’ project: exploring heritage and well-being in a rapidly changing seaside town. In: Darvill, T., Heaslip, V. and Staelens, Y., eds. Historic Landscape and Mental Well-being. Oxford: Archaeopress. (In Press)

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Abstract

Illuminated in Folkestone’s Creative Quarter stands the text-sculpture ‘heaven is a place where nothing ever happens’, encapsulating, some commentators note, the ennui of seaside towns. The words are, however, deceptive – Folkestone is evolving rapidly, partly fuelled by funding to regenerate through the arts. Whilst many are embracing this surge of creative development, such change can inevitably lead to anxiety and feelings of alienation for others.

In June 2017 a small team from Canterbury Christ Church University, Kent, led a ten-day community graveyard survey at the Church of St Mary and St Eanswythe in the heart of historic Folkestone. The experience and outcomes were revealing - at times unexpected - offering insight into the significance of this ‘hidden’ place, but also the importance of small-scale heritage projects such as this for communities in transition. Immersing - not imposing - ourselves in the daily life of the site also provided a platform for communication with the many individuals and groups who have taken ownership over it, some of whom face significant social challenges.

This paper will discuss some of our experiences and project outcomes, and reflect on the possible importance of historical sites such as these – and our uses of them - for well-being.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations > BX4800 Protestantism > BX5011 Church of England
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BX Christian Denominations > BX4800 Protestantism > BX6101 Other Protestant denominations > BX6201 Baptists > BX6231 History. Local divisions
D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain > DA0020 England > DA0670 Local history and description
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA0790 Mental health services. Mental illness prevention
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Humanities
Depositing User: Ellie Williams
Date Deposited: 07 Feb 2019 11:11
Last Modified: 21 Aug 2019 12:10
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/17966

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00