To download a resource pack please visit Lighthouse Poole website
Valise Noire Storytelling Theatre received a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for the project, Poppy Fields. Awarded through HLF’s First World War: then and now programme, the project focuses on the creation of thousands of poppies made out of paper and wire which have been included in site specific performances and shown now as a collection in this exhibition. The poppies have been created by children from Cultural Hub schools, the public, care homes and youth groups across Poole and Bournemouth. Performing Arts, The Arts University Bournemouth and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
To mark the Centenary of the First World War, Poppy Fields is enabling local people in Poole and Bournemouth to come together to preserve the memories and heritage of the people who lived through the First World War.
The Poppy Fields performances are contemporary interpretations inspired by local stories from World War One, seen through the eyes of two First World War nurses, performed by Michele O'Brien and Hazel Evans. Research has been carried out at Poole and Dorset History Centres, The Imperial War Museum London as well as uncovering local stories first hand.
Sites for performances have included the fallen trees near the War Memorial in Poole Park, Green Park on Longfleet Road near Poole Hospital which is built on the site of The Cornelia Hospital and Bournemouth Town Hall which was formerly the Mont Dore Military Hospital. A three day pilgrimage took place in the Summer of 2014 as a walking performance, Michele and Hazel started at the Cordite Factory in Holton Heath at dawn and continued to visit numerous heritage sites in Poole, including War Memorials, churches, schools, parks and places of significance during World War One. The performances have been a key aspect of the project in order to disseminate local heritage stories as an engaging and immersive experience for the audience.
Poppy Fields is a Valise Noire project In partnership with The Heritage Lottery Fund, Bournemouth and Poole Cultural Hub, Borough of Poole, Lighthouse Poole’s Centre for the Arts, Wave Arts Education Agency, Activate Performing Arts, The Arts University Bournemouth and Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra.
We would also like to express addition thanks to:
Sound: Momo:tempo sound design for the performances
Photographic Documentation: Sharon Gadellaa for documentation of the Pilgrimage, Danika Westwood for documentation of site specific performances
Filming: Hartley Woolf and Sebastian Wrigley for the Poole Park performance
Costumes: Tom Murphy and Lucy Sammons from the Arts University Bournemouth
Family Documentation and WW1 artefacts: Steve Limburn
Cultural Hub Schools: Ad Astra First, Bethany and St Clement's Bournemouth, Bishop Of Winchester, Canford Heath Infants, Canford Heath Junior, Haymoor Junior, Heathlands, St Luke's, Poole High.
Poole and Bournemouth Libraries
Poole Museum and History Centre
Borough of Poole Culture and Community Learning Team
Lewis Manning Hospice