Future of the High Street

Principal Investigator:  Lorraine Farrelly
Funding Status: Reading Borough Council’s High Streets Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ)
Start and End Date:

Academics from the University of Reading have been part of a successful bid to secure over £9,000 from Historic England, to initiate four exciting ‘Community Story Telling’ activities focussed around the Oxford Road in west Reading.

The aim of the project is to engage with Oxford Road area communities to explore people’s real stories of the area to amplify the local heritage and rich multicultural history of the road.

Planned activities include:

  • The Oxford Road Storyboard – focusing on identifying “Who we are” as a theme that brings to light all the fabulous stories along the Oxford Road;
  • Oxford Road shop window art gallery – bringing together local communities,
  • Shop keepers and local artists to re-imagine shop fronts and other parts of the high street as gallery and spaces;
  • A Story-telling promenade performance along the Oxford Road (also filmed and shared online);
  • Creative and inventive Covid public safety artwork interventions which link to both heritage and the Oxford Road businesses.

This pilot project will be developed as a springboard to a more in-depth exploration of ‘Community Story Telling’ for the wider Heritage Action Zone programme, which will help to promote a sense of place and identity, mutual rOxford Rdespect, understanding and cohesion.

News and Events:

University of Reading Press Release: https://www.reading.ac.uk/news-and-events/releases/PR850725.aspx

Reports and Publications: