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General History
Time Travellers of Dunstable Project - Background

Places > Dunstable > General History > Time Travellers of Dunstable Project

What is it? | What does it look like in the town? | The workshops | Who are we? | Soundtracks | Project Launch

What is it?

Time Travellers of Dunstable is a series of publicly located 'Audio-Zones', places where people can sit and listen to stories about Dunstable as it was in the past and how it is now. The 'Audio-Zones' contain recordings of personal accounts of life in Dunstable created in collaboration with local pensioners and elderly people during a series of workshops.

During the launch event headphones will be available at the 'Zones' in order that members of the public can listen to the 'Soundtracks'. It is like experiencing a living film (says the artist) - the audience listen to fragments of memories from the past whilst watching everyday life happen around them.
After the project launch on the 25th July the 'Soundtracks' will also be made available via a project website and here on the Virtual Library.

What does it look like in the town?

The 'Audio-Zones' will be clearly recognised in the town centre as large scale graphic shapes on the ground. These visual markers are inspired by the graphic style common in science fiction magazines, comic books (and Lichtenstein paintings of the 1960's) - imagery that is associated with 'holes in space' or 'portals' through which time travellers move.

Audio Zone outside Dunstable Library, Vernon Place Audio Zone in Ashton Square Audio Zone in The Quadrant

Artist impression of the 'Audio-Zones'

The 'Audio-Zones' are located at: Ashton Square, The Quadrant and Vernon Place.

The workshops?

Workshop participants worked with artist Julie Myers sharing and recording their stories using traditional mapping techniques and mobile technology to create a collective aural history of the town. Participants were encouraged to bring in photographs and objects that reflected their lives in Dunstable.
The participants said:
"It has surpassed our expectations. We have enjoyed every single minute, met many interesting people, and heard many many interesting stories. We are so glad that the project was bought to us and gave us the opportunity to take part, thank you so much."
Eileen Brown

"During the project, I was interviewed and said something about when I was a boy during WW2. This is now a CD and when I first played it, my son was with me. To my great surprise, he expressed a genuine interest and took a copy for himself. There is also some chap in America who is interested so he also has a copy. At the time of the interview, I had no idea my little story would generate such interest - very gratifying."
Paul Heley

"It is a great idea. Interesting to hear new pieces of information about Dunstable that I didn't know. I even learn't new stuff about my husband... so much has happened in Dunstable"
Brenda Pratt

Workshop participants at Priory House: Eileen Brown, Alan Brown, Brenda Pratt, Peter Pratt, Paul Heley, John Bowden, Moira Cavanagh, Christine Kirk, Iris Bells, Corinne Ann Griffin, Carole Owens, Trevor Owens, Mick O'Sullivan, Vivienne Evans.
At Furness Avenue: Julie Bailey, Betty Tapner, Roy Parry, John Sear, Dorothy Hargate, Doreen Stock, Thelma Cook, George Baker, Joan Della, Beryl Bailey, Marjorie Pitt, Kathleen Keanty.
Special thanks to - John Buckledee and Rita Swift of Dunstable and District Local History Society.

Below are some images of the participants at the workshops.

Below are some images of the launch day in Dunstable.

Peter at the workshop Recording Daphne at the workshop Workshop attendee showing family photo Recording device Julie Myers, the artist Moira listening to the soundtracks Eileen, Alan and Peter working together Map of Dunstable with reminiscence post-it notes stuck to it Group of four ladies looking at photos together

Who are we?

Julie Myers

Julie Myers is an artist and university lecturer based in London. Her practice is informed by a response to people and place, and combines traditional techniques such as photography, filmmaking and drawing, together with mobile, web and emergent technologies. The ways people make sense of their environment through memory, personal experience and story-telling is thematically central within Myers' work.
Find our more about Julie at

Bedford Creative Arts

Bedford Creative Arts is a contemporary arts organisation that commissions artists to create new work with local communities. Bedford Creative Arts seeks to question and explore genuine artistic collaboration and what it means to commission with communities. We work with specialist, experienced artists who are exploring new possibilities of collaborative arts practice. Its commissions are realised through collaboration with community partners, to make art in everyday places and explore the links between art and social, economic or cultural issues.
Find out more about BCA at

Thank you to our funders - Lloyds Bank Foundation and Bedford Creative Arts.

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Page last updated: 30th September 2014