As part of Preston Guild 2012, Foxton Lives developed and explored the cultural and social history of Preston and incorporated the personal experiences, hopes and desires of the Foxton Centre’s community through photography, film, memorabilia, stories and poems.

The project focused on the life histories of clients who use the Foxton Centre in Preston, a community centre which is houses projects working with homeless people and those at risk of social exclusion. It relates these personal, and often transient, hidden and everyday histories to archival representations of Preston Guild. We explored archives of the Guild through objects, ephemera, text, sound, film, and photography. We mainly looked at post Second World War Guilds (1952, 1972, 1992) as they were the most relevant to the participants.

Foxton Lives: an archive recorded the personal histories of the vulnerable & often transient clients of the Foxton Centre, Preston, through their engagement with archives from past Preston Guilds from local museums, and record offices, including objects & ephemera, text, sound, image, and film. The project used soft teaching skills, along with life & creative writing to develop personal stories of Foxton participants. We trained volunteers from Preston VCFS media based organisations alongside staff and volunteers from Foxton Centre in archiving.

A physical archive of Foxton participants was created, accessible to the public through exhibition at the Foxton Center and with the Museum of Lancashire & archive the finished work with relevant record offices & archives. The exhibition was also displayed at the MAP shop set up in our Pop-Up Space for several weeks during Preston Guild (Sept 2012) in St. George’s Shopping Centre.

Visit the Foxton Lives archive  website

The stories were published through the commissioned Guild project Preston 3twenty. A project blog was set up, training participants in social media & used as a showcase & evaluate the work.

Foxton Lives celebrates and highlights the importance of unseen & often undocumented heritage & histories in relation to the Guild.

Read more about our current Foxton Lives work here