Wednesday, 27 January 2010


When I was sixteen I went to an art college by the sea for two years. I left Norfolk at nineteen and never thought I'd come back to live, let alone come and work in the place where I went to college all those years ago. Strange how things come around isn't it.

Yesterday, as part of work of course, we visited a museum and the library. Along the way I remembered and saw a lot of the places the sixteen year old me rushed along, always it seemed dragging a huge portfolio behind me. We walked through the park where I used to hope a gorgeous boy would notice me as we rushed between sites and lessons. He never did though. Possibly the pink eyeliner I thought looked so cool (later I realised it looked like my eyes were really sore).

When we got to the library there was the most stunning textile elephant on display. Last year in Norwich there was an elephant trail of individually designed beasties. I guess this was inspired by those. It had been made in collboration with a textile artist to record the memories of locals with early alzheimers. We spent quite a while looking and reading each of the patches. For me they worked as they followed no other thread than being about memory of a place.

Here's the beastie themself. Hope they stay there for a while. While we were there we were told about a hope and dreams quilt that is to be made by all the local educational groups. Each square is quite large so I signed our small band up for two. It will then be going on display later in the year and finally ending up at the children's hospital.

At the far end of the park, just before the art college, was this stunning wood sculpture of St George and the Dragon.

Then we crossed the road and saw the shell of what was once teh art college. No longer used and no one knows what to do with it. The other site has gone back to being a school again and so at least is being used.

The art college pretty much sums up the area. It is absolutely full of amazing historical buildings, but there is so much real human need in the area for decent housing and work that these buildings are background to daily realities. I found it strange seeing what the sixteen year old me would never have seen filled with daydreams and excitement. Mind you I don't think I've changed that much because I still got lost in the magic of place names and the past.


  1. Isn't the elephant enchanting? So interesting too. Is that your old art college which is derelict? If it is, it must feel a bit sad to see it like that. When I went down to London recently, I felt like I was going on a trip down memory lane, when I was looking at the tube map! When I lived in London, my tube stop was Kensal Green, on the Bakerloo line. Love Vanessa xxx

  2. I love the idea of the elephant with the memory patches, really special.
    Ann x

  3. It's a bit sad isn't it,to go back and see buildings,once cared for and full of life in that sorry state.I bet the memories came flooding back though.


  4. I saw the old art college last summer and was so gutted that they hadn't been made into very cool luxury flats. I remember it being such a nice building with plenty of original features. What a waste.

    Loved you blog though. Hope the job is going really well. Hopefully meet you for lunch sometime. x Claire

  5. The elephant is really clever I think, and the ones they had dotted around the city were so gorgeous... I'd have loved to have been able to afford one when they were auctioned off, but sadly not.

  6. Cute elephant....lovely blog, so inspiring, I've had a brill 15 mins reading your old posts, I love Teenas blog too!xxx

  7. The Elephant is lovely, I remember the Norwich Elephants, such an inspiring idea.

  8. Beautiful post, all so lovely & sweet. I just got stuck on the pink eyeliner, surely not, they made such a make up utensil??
    Love how you embrace your life, love Posie

  9. I love the patchwork elephant.

    The boys loves the ones hidden around Norwich.

    Am sure they did something similar with cows in Cambridge a few years ago too.

  10. That elephant is amazing. Such a great idea x

  11. where on earth is that place? I don't recognise it at all!!! t.x


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