About the People’s Pier Research Project ….

The People’s Pier research team are delighted to have been part of such a successful and productive partnership with the Clevedon Pier and Heritage Trust. The People’s Pier project has investigated 21st century pier culture and focused on two main themes. Firstly, how communities have taken collective action to safeguard a local heritage asset like the Pier and, secondly, how the Pier’s popular cultural heritage can be used to build positive relationships with different groups and attract new audiences.

The project’s focus on community and popular culture has resulted in the recording of local residents’ memories of good times on Clevedon Pier from which the team have then produced a set of audio podcasts which are now available to the public on the first floor of the Toll House in the Trust’s award winning Discover @ the Pier attraction. With the accompanying ‘Popular Culture on Clevedon Pier’ brochure featuring themes such as 1960s youth culture, fashion and popular music, as associated with British seaside heritage and the Pier, the team hope to capture the interest of the younger generations of today.

It was very encouraging to see so many residents wanting to be part of the project and their contribution is incredibly valuable as a form of community heritage to be recorded for the benefit of future generations. Whilst the project is now complete the work will continue as visitor’s are encouraged to share their memories and photographs of past times on the Pier.

The project was led by Dr Olu Jenzen at the University of Brighton and funded by The Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Dr Jenzen said “It is important to gain an updated understanding of 21st century pier culture. This includes more in-depth knowledge about how seaside piers as popular culture and leisure spaces converge with new usages such as those introduced with the concept of the community pier.”

Trust Chairman, Simon Talbot-Ponsonby added “it has been a pleasure working with Olu and everyone else involved. The audio recordings and brochures available in Discover @ the Pier will no doubt attract a lot of interest”.