We first met Catherine in 2012. She was one of our neighbours in Walworth. We encountered each other through the railed fence and gate of our building. We opened the gate, shared tea and many conversations about the neighbourhood; that our garden used to be the community green, that the reason for our address being confused between two street names was due to the railings installed for safety purposes 3 years previously, when before, this street used to be a common circular walkway.
Catherine, being one of the longest residing residents of the neighbourhood had many stories to share with us; about the previous industry on the river, the 5 community halls where they would gather and sing, the previous cinema up the road, the bath house, east st market and the cockles stall.
We invited Catherine and her friends to come along as part of the ‘arrivals’ programme, one of our hosted residencies with a performance collective. They came, carrying freshly baked lemon cake and tea, excitingly awaiting their hosts outside the metal gate. 3 hours of conversation was shared, memories uncovered, seemingly lost local history, a selection of postcards, laughs and tears.
Through the process of getting to know Catherine, we ask ourselves
what stories do we miss between the railings?
how can we open up our gates to one another?
Catherine remains a close friend and collaborator.
Works together include
Here comes everybody 2012
400 speeches 2013
Rhythm analysis 2014