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Lost Voices

The Arts Council  awarded us a grant through its Develop Your Creative Practice programme to develop and explore new forms of storytelling, seeking to bring lost voices from the past to life.  The award has also funded training in cinematography and sound recording to create a palette of storytelling skills that we can use in this work. 

Following input from local historians and community groups, two lost voices were chosen, the poet James Reynolds Withers and an adaption of a traditional Fenland story called the Dead Moon:


James Reynolds Withers

James Reynolds Withers was a Victorian poet (1812 to 1892) who was born in the village of Weston Colville in Cambridgeshire then lived, for most of his life, in Fordham, a few miles away. Despite growing up in poverty and spending time in the workhouse, he eventually gained great success as a poet, attracting many wealthy patrons, including Charles Dickens and grant from Queen Victoria. His remarkable story is told here through film and sound recording.

The Dead Moon


The Dead Moon is a traditional Fenland folk tale from Lincolnshire, first recorded in the Quarterly Review of Folk-lore in 1891 by Mrs C. M. Balfour. A modern version of the tale, written by Peter Daldorph, is shown here, alongside the original. Both stories are told by storyteller, Malcolm Busby.  The aim is to place traditional story telling into a modern context and see how this works.

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The Workshop

This is a recording of a workshop held on the 7th February 2022 to present outputs from the Lost Voices project. In addition, it features contributions from Professor Steve Waters from the University of East Anglia and local historian and archivist Mike Petty.

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