What makes Land of Oak & Iron special to you?

Philippa has been working with us on her research project about landscape and memory, looking at how people pass memories on across generations within local communities and how people feel about local heritage.

This is her blog she would like to share.

For the first part of my research I spent some time in Chopwell talking to local people about the places that are special to them around the village and hearing about their memories of the Land of Oak & Iron. At the end of 2017 I was invited to give a talk about my research at a conference on Landscapes organised by PLACE and the Royal Geographical Society (Yorks and NE).

My talk was about nostalgia, which sometimes has a bad reputation as it has been suggested that it makes people backward looking or unwilling to accept change. I argued that feeling nostalgic about the past is not always negative, it can have positive effects in helping people to feel a greater sense of community and playing a part in shaping positive visions of the future. If you’re interested, you can read a transcript of my talk.






These photos of Chopwell were taken by local resident Helen Neasham, I will miss my trips to the village, which has some stunning views. Over the next few months I will be moving on from Chopwell to look at Winlaton. If you are interested in being interviewed you can find more information about my research here or email me. It would be great to hear from you!

Philippa Carter, PhD student in Geography at Newcastle University.