The 'Back to the Future' project is a very interesting concept, to see and hear about the way things have changed over the last 50 years was, to say the least, an eye opening experience. One thing particularly hadn't changed though, the sense of community and togetherness of the estate. Directly adjacent to the houses was a skate park and a smaller children's park, the children were out in force every day to see what we were up to with our upscale doll's house. Dr Ian Waites, of the university of Lincoln, was a resident of the estate 50 years ago and he shared with the children stories of his youth, they were clearly taken aback by how different things were. During the week Ian took residents of all ages on short tours to talk about the way the estate had changed and then challenged the children to make their own tours to get a sense of modern life on the estate.
Kate Genever and Steve Pool (aka The Poly-Technic) set up fun activities for the children and documented the findings of the week by video (interviewing people from the estate) finding some very different angles on life in the area. On the final day we spoke to some of the young people performing stunts on the skate park with their bikes and scooters, we were stunned by the outrageous tricks they were performing. When we approached the young people, we found out just how much the skate park meant to them and also the endless hours they spend working on their tricks. The skate park area gives the young people a way to positively channel their energy and when questioned about it they all said they'd be at a loose end without it.
The thing that impressed me most during my two days at the estate was the way that the children stuck together as one big group, they all knew each other. No matter how much had changed over 50 years it was refreshing to see that the community were still strong and together.
You can view Kate and Steve's blog here: http://kategenever-stevepool.blogspot.co.uk/