Friday, the last day of July and day 5 of the Story Studio at Treherbert. I personally returned after a day off, missing out on what had been a busy one for much of it as documented in Karen’s Day 4 blog post, when three project partners in the shape of Joe Smith, the project’s lead Principal Investigator, and Kim Hammond, the overall project manager, both at the Open University, had made the long journey down to visit along with one of the project’s key external partners, Yvette Vaughan-Jones from Visiting Arts, who is involved in the work we are doing in Butetown, Cardiff.
By the end of Friday, we had had our busiest day to date taking our overall number of visitors to well over 300. There was a lively fascinating discussion in the morning involving amongst others Tom Phelps, a local poet who is well renowned across south Wales, and David Williams, a local resident with a keen insight into the area. Later, Tom popped back to donate some copies of his poetry in book and on CD. We were also very pleased to get a surprise visit by Tom Cadwallader, the poet from Ynysybwl, some of whose works have been adorning the walls and attracting attention at the studio here.
In planning the studio, we decided to open on Saturday to provide an opportunity for people who perhaps couldn’t make the weekdays and so it proved. Not as busy as Friday, it nevertheless brought new faces in and wonderful animated discussions on energy futures with some telling contributions. Perhaps the nicest part of the day came when a young boy was thrilled to operate and hear the wind-up gramophone we have had donated for the duration of the studio. His face was a picture as the eerie crackling voice of Josef Locke pierced the air. Who needs iPods, eh?