As part of the Masters of Architecture Year 1 course run by the University of the West of England, four students (Danai Charalampidi, Joe Hyett, Jay Sinclair and Katie Williams) were invited by Local Learning to contribute to the Hillfields Homes for Heroes centenary celebrations. The Live Studio module aims to develop and practice architectural design skills through professional consultation.
Consulting set designers, clients and local stakeholders, the primary role was to engage with local residents to help express the importance of Hillfields local history. Taking the form of activities and games, the community events that were designed and organised helped to generate a range of discussions and ideas that not only could enhance future developments but also celebrate what already exists in the local area.
A series of accessible games and activities engaged with both the local and the broader community. These activities created discussions and encouraged the sharing of opinions, stories and information.
The games included:
- ‘Find Your Home’ which helped to inform the participants about the variety of historical council house types within Hillfields
- A ‘Share Your Stories’ community event which encouraged the telling and collection of memories and stories of both past and present
- A ‘Build Your Home’ after school activity designed for the children of Minerva Primary Academy. The activity acted as an educational tool, introducing children to a new topic and providing opportunities to discuss the important characteristics of a council house and what is needed to create a strong community, looking at the wider context of what makes a home.
The enthusiasm and passion of Hillfields’ local people inspired the creation of our ‘Little Book of Ideas’ as well as a further Activity Report covering our contribution to the project. The book stands as a small thank you, or legacy, which we would like to leave for the community to explore in the future, marking the end of our university project. The aim of the booklet is to share the significance of Hillfields in the development of council housing, and act as a starting point to engage the community further, create discussions and inspire more residents to get involved. The booklet includes eight fun ideas that can inspire residents to create and build upon a growing timeline of developments that celebrates and enhances the area of Hillfields.