Hidden Voices goes public

A lot has happened since the last post.

Hidden Voices has gone public: A box with leaflets was placed in the Grosvenor Centre, we were interviewed by BBC Radio Northampton, and last Saturday, 16th April we talked to a lot of people in the Grosvenor Centre who are interested in the project.

We also successfully presented the Follow Northampton school project to the children and teachers of the Good Shepherd Primary School who so enthusiastically  explored Northampton’s past last year and created this handmade journey through historic Northampton.

We are now collating the information and following up with other people who are interested in the project, but couldn’t make it into town on Saturday.

More will be revealed soon…

The challenge to work across different disciplines

At the last meeting on the 3rd February it became apparent how challenging it is to work across different disciplines and courses with students who are largely volunteering and very busy with their respective coursework. Nevertheless there is a clear commitment from history, architectural technology, interior design and a little more tentatively from media.

We decided on a sequence of activities:
1. Scoping Interest with the public (through various media)
2. Interview Day (Date suggested: 16th April)
3. Launch event (when everything will be on the app)

Stuff has happened in the meantime and the things to be finalised are:

  • Statement & Questionnaire
  • Poster
  • Boxes

Once we go public, this blog will start looking a bit more exciting!

Student Communication Channels Established

Update 18 January 2016

Six students attended the meeting on the 9th December and one Architectural Technology student has agreed to act as student project manager. She has set up a facebook page and started communicating with fellow students.  At the meeting discussion took place of how students from the different subjects could learn about each others’ subjects other than through informal discussion.  Short presentations were suggest – this is subject to confirmation. Since then the History students have formally joined the group via their placement. One of them has started the discussion board on NILE.

There are 15 students now enrolled on NILE and they have been provided with a detailed brief. The next meeting will be on Wednesday, 20th January.

This meeting will include among other things confirmation of the contact with the Community Radio and related recording issues (Drew Gray), making progress on the ethics approval (Daniel Oxer) and starting the communication with the community.

Sabine Coady Schaebitz

Meeting the Students

Project Progress

Update 26  November 2015

We have been busy recruiting students for the project and set up a first meeting with them, which took place yesterday afternoon at Avenue Campus in the Interior Design Studio.

This was a very encouraging gathering as the sense of enthusiasm and creativity was palpable. What was interesting for me was that the mix of students from different disciplines and different nationalities immediately added to the excitement for them. We can expect that this also very much adds to the approach they will be taking to places and memories.

Following a short briefing from us a lively discussion ensued on how to approach the project. Students dived straight into thematic ideas as well as starting to consider the practicalities. It was agreed that we should meet again before Christmas and that everybody will bring further ideas to the table then.

In the meantime Rob Farmer has set up a discussion board for Hidden Voices on the Follow Northampton NILE site and we have added the project overview.

It is now confirmed that students will participate from the following disciplines:

  • Architectural Technology
  • History
  • Interior Design
  • Journalism
  • Media

Further steps:

  1. Students (and staff) will be enrolled onto the NILE site.
  2. Students will be asked to start exchanging ideas on the discussion board for Hidden Voices.
  3. A more detailed brief will be issued to the students by the time of the next meeting.
  4. The next meeting will take place on Wednesday, 9th December.
  5. The project plan will be developed accordingly.


Sabine Coady Schaebitz

Project Set-Up

Hidden Voices: Students, Place and Community


Through collaboration of students and staff from the School of Social Sciences and the School of the Arts this interdisciplinary project will:

  • Engage students in an interdisciplinary project that will challenge them to take control of their own learning experience and apply their subject knowledge in a meaningful way
  • Empower students to lead a community engagement project with regard to places and memories in Northampton; and
  • Create a digital Memory Map as a special learning and teaching tool to be included in the existing Follow Northampton App.

This project builds on the previously funded project which successfully completed the creation of the interactive website and downloadable Follow Northampton App that allows a virtual tour of Northampton sites of cultural heritage: http://follownorthampton.co.uk/

Project Team

Name Role in the project Contribution to the project
Sabine Coady Schaebitz Project Leader 1 Project management; subject lead for built heritage and community engagement; liaison with 3DDesign; project design, writing up and dissemination
Drew Gray Project Leader 2 Project management; subject lead  for history/ heritage as social practice; liaison with Journalism & Media; project design, writing up and dissemination
Rob Farmer IT learning Responsible for website/ digital material
Sue Jacobs 3DDesign & Fine Art Subject lead for 3DDesign
Daniel Oxer Journalism & Media Subject lead for Journalism & Media


Project Progress

Update 02 November 2015

Daniel, Rob, Drew and I met today as a first meeting for the project set up after the project was awarded funding in October. Sue wasn’t able to attend but I had preliminary discussions with her and will meet up with her hopefully later this week.

A lot of enthusiasm about the project was expressed at the meeting and many ideas were expressed of how our combined expertise can contribute in a creative way.

We reinforced the shared understanding of a student led project on linking places in Northampton to individual people’s memories. There was a general preference for focussing on unloved/ dilapidated heritage in Northampton including buildings which have already disappeared. This could be done by a mixture of providing a list of buildings/sites and taking the public’s suggestions into consideration.

The next steps are:

  1. Recruit students from Journalism/Media, History and 3DD

We think we might get ca. 7-8 students for Journalism/ Media and ca. 4 students for History and something in between for 3DD students. History students will do this as part of their placement, 3DD could possibly build on their involvement in the exhibition on urban intervention. This exhibition could be the beginning/catalyst of what we might include in an urban room student contribution. 

  1. Develop brief for students

Drew and I will write a draft asap and will circulate for everybody’s perusal.

  1. Set up meeting between us and students

We are currently exploring a date to meet with all students later in the month.

  1. Update/ detail project plan from our side based on the work packages identified for the submission

This will also be discussed with the repecitive students.


The project is on track with the establishment of the internal project partners due to start on the 02 November 2015.


Sabine Coady Schaebitz