We are underway in our planning for Ham House's 400th Birthday celebrations this coming May - setting up working teams and beginning to contact community groups. Our plan is to have all the groups come together in a procession that will begin at Ham Common and will walk up to the south gates of the house. We walked the proposed route of the procession 2 weeks ago and it seems perfect! The common is directly behind the house down a straight avenue all the way to the common which will hopefully work as a great meeting place for the groups and for the community to see everyone gathering together.
The meetings have been going well, although there has been a few people missing in the last couple of weeks. Thursdays meetings will now be given to the creative team to teach us what they have been doing with Tina. Last week we learnt how to make masks which we can possibly do in workshops with children so that they can wear them in the procession. Claudia filmed the meeting and interviewed us so that we can have an archived process of the whole project.
Everyone has been given a group to contact so we will hopefully have a broad range of groups participating in the event. A good thing about the project is that people will gain awareness of the different community groups in their area and therefore hopefully come together more as a community and borough. For the younger generation to gain an interest and knowledge of Ham House and the National Trust would be really fantastic as well.
Zoe mentioned that one of the landlady's of the pubs in Ham said that they didn't feel that the house was a part of the community. It didn't seem to do anything that showed that it was a part of Ham. This is exactly the reason that the National Trust want to do have this party and from the work that we did with Spiral, it is something that i would love to be able to achieve. I hope that we can give the people of Ham and the surrounding areas something that they can really be proud of and help them to really celebrate having the house in their community. It would be really great if the party was just the beginning, and that the community begin to take a much bigger role in the future of the house and supported each other.