A new QR audio trail across Lewes district launches first set of signs which tell eclectic, site-specific stories!
The stories are from Lewes ghosts and wartime pig adoption to the fascinating stories of the chalk and flint which surround us.
This month sees the launch of Audioways in Lewes, East Sussex. The first series of these free, easy to access audio recordings begins in Lewes town and at five train stations along the Brighton to Eastbourne line.
With the support of Southern Rail, SCRP and Lewes Town Council, co-producers Jeannine Inglis Hall and Galia Pike have worked with a wide range of collaborators from palaeontologists, archaeologists and historians to residents who have shared their local insights and personal stories to create a series of 15 short audio recordings.
Featuring diverse themes ranging from local prehistory to history, ecology, archaeology and more, the recordings will be accessed via colour coded QR signs dotted around Lewes town and local stations. Participants will be able to listen to these recordings as a singular experience or curate their own route to listen to them all.
The trail is a great way to explore the local area on foot or via rail – discovering new and interesting stories as you go.
With stories as diverse as adopted pigs, Lewes ghosts, a 20 year love affair with Lewes FC and the fascinating stories of the chalk and flint which surround us, the project promises a story to interest everyone.
Audioways have worked with a team of Lewes district locals: Susie Maidment, palaeontologist at The Natural History Museum, Dr Michael Shapland, senior archaeologist from UCL and several Sussex historians including Kevin Gordon, Dr Jenny Flood and Dominic Ramos. They have also gathered local voices and oral history recordings (with thanks to the British library, Imperial War Museum and The Keep).
Co-producer Galia Pike told us: “We have a wealth of fascinating stories in Lewes. Audioways is a great opportunity to share these – connecting tourists, young people and the wider community to the many tales from our district. Not only will the project make these stories more accessible, it will also create a community resource which can be built upon and evolved over time.”
Co-Producer Jeannine Inglis Hall told us: “Everyone will benefit from the project – it’s free at point of access, instantly conveys local knowledge and clearly communicates historical and present connections. The site-specific format will immerse participants in their environment and aims to change our perception of the spaces we inhabit.”
Lewes District Council’s Tourism, Arts and Heritage Manager, Helen Browning Smith enthuses “Audioways is a great way to engage with all visitors to Lewes. This is an inventive and fun method of telling the story of our town and it celebrates the unique creative spirit of our brilliant community. I’m looking forward to seeing how the project grows.”
Southern’s support has been key to the success of the project. Chris Fowler, Customer Services Director at Southern explains “The trail is great as it’s free to participate and is helping to promote sustainable tourism. By taking the train to get to QR locations between Lewes and Seaford, you’ll be using one of the greenest and quickest ways to travel.
We’re looking forward to welcoming passengers exploring the local area on-board as restrictions continue to ease and help people discover new and familiar parts of the UK.”
The first phase of the trail can be accessed around Lewes town centre, and the following stations: Lewes, Southease, Newhaven Town, Bishopstone and Seaford.