Episode · 4 months ago

19: The Logie Project


Andrew speaks with Rachel Boyd and Matthew Knights from the Logie Project.

Cool i'm under bachelor and welcome tothe bran new ses of dundas, a podcast grace talk to amusing people from in anternant and people who have had a connection to the city. On the firstepisode of this new series, i talked to reach our boy, the matthew knights fromthe wagi project. The waki project was set up to celebrate a hundred years ofthe wake house in the state in dundee, which is an all discounselled, thestate in scotland, due to the ongoing coved pandemic celebrations. For it's ahundred sin. First, you were halted, but there's hope that once a pandemicdies, den willy will get for per celebration to markets. One hundredseven fir three riga, misty will let you know more about the project andtalk about their ams and goals it so it out. For their ado. I hope we enjoy thefirst episode of this new series of done de cast enjoy. So the first thingi was going to ask was so what is all gi project and what? What makes itspecial? What makes it stand out and what? What's up for so right? Some ofyou rachel and i'm going to you matt, you yeah sure, so. The logo hundred project is acommunity pro project designed to commemorate the deled intint of thegust and dundee or the logi scheme and undy, should i say, which celebratedit's a hundred year in me, two thousand and twenty. So really. What we are looking to dowith the loggie project is to get the local community involved, the currentlyresidents of logging involved and commening their own kind of socialhistory, and what i think is quite special about what we're amang to do isthat we're looking at the history we're looking at the research it's alreadybeing conducted by our partners that done de sety archives and we're hopingto connect that with people's own loved experience of living on the scheme andthe present, so we're really hoping to get the local residents involved inthinking about what the history of these hoses are and thinking about thesignificance of this little part of the world and and de so i really hoping tokind of connect people with the kind of larger social history of these houses.The reason why it is so special is that it's the first council housing schemein scotland, and that i think, is something worth community andespecially when you think about it in the context of the working classes whothe homes were originally intended for matthew, and what is your thought? Sonwill be project, and what do you like about it? Yeah? Well, i think, likerachel saying, there's the opportunity to commemorate it. I'm a writer and aplaywright and a lot of- and i also teach crave, briton, so a love. What ido is about connecting with people, but also particularly few social history,which i'm really passionate about me and rachel actually met when we wereboth working part time in a museum. So s we both kind of really interested insocial history demary, and i think it's something that you can really reach alot of people. You can get a lot of people talking about things that theymight not know about or things that they might know about, and you get youget kind of both both sides of that interest me in a way. You know you'vealways got your people that are kind of a bit a bit knowledgeable and they'regetting interested in history and in any area, but you also get people thatare kind of like. I don't know anything about that, but it's on my doorstep andsomething i loge it rarely kind of is like that, and i suppose for me i justrecently moved to and about six months ago from edinburgh- and i guess likethere's this kind of the story of me and encountering. It is what s kind ofgot me started leg in tense at. I was just literally, i got a house here andi'm just i happened to live near logi and i just walk past it and there's aplaque there so like people that know about it will know, there's that therewas a placque in as part of the building and that's just kind of likethe beginning of me. Thinking exactly... what i think happens is that you,if you start looking for these things, you can see them everywhere. Is historyeverywhere right so like and a place laded just got load. So you know, isuppose i probably got a bit of an eye for it now, because wherever i go, i'malways looking out for those any like wheel, little plaques or anything doyou know i mean all just be commemoraret. This street was used tobe the you know, the back of a prison or like this used to be this orwhatever, and i guess like starting from that point. I thought well. Thisis interesting to try to find out about it myself and then taking it from there.I guess we've been building and we still were in the quite early stages ofbuilding a project which, hopefully will include different elements, whichwill let people engaged with that as well. So as well as talking about it,which is a starting point like seeing if there's ways that we can, like mayberecord some of those conversations may be creatively engaged with people aswell. So that's kind of where i'm coming out from from that side of itand rachel's also does a lot of research work. I like so we're hopingwe haven't, got confirmation, we're hoping we could do some more industryas well. I think, just to kind of add on to what what matthew was seeing,we're both really interested and kind of alternative methods of likeknowledge, production and the types of history that people know through lovedexperience and not just from their own education or learning and so much ofhousing. History is really interesting in that and that perspective, becauseit's part of people's loved experience, it's what they know and it's it'sreally heart felt to them, because it's part of not only their childhood butthe communities that they grew up and and how the you know, form theirexperiences and connections to places. So we're really interested in like thedifferent ways in which people kind of can engage with that and and how we cankind of encourage those conversations and record those conversations as partof a real, authentic history of luges a place and won. Your hundred project hasdone a survey for the for the residents of the area. So what what went into allthat? And how did it have ye all come about and what what was a proces andthen to doing that? And how much did you enjoy doing it and getting fondwith it yeah? Well, we kind of it was initially. We thought we would be ableto do a bit more than we did in the sense that we fought. We kind of hopeto be actually go to doorsteps and that to people, because that was what ithought would be the most obvious thing to do, but because of corona virus, itwas a little bit restricted in that respect. So what we did is we put aleaflet for everyone's door, which basically said on it? Did you know thisand do you do you want to do a survey, so we designed like rachel designed theservant? It was quite kind of quite short and quite easy to do just toasking people what they what they knew about. It already and may be gotten abit of an idea of what a whether they would like to be involved with it,because we didn't really know joma, don'treally know, especially because i m i'm new here, but then, to be honest i meanyou could do of any street. Can you and like you to know, and even if you'velived somewhere for ages, you are like to know those people on a given streetanita. So it's like and yeah. There are two hundred and fifty houses, so thatcould be quite a ol people there. So we thought it would be particularlyinteresting to just go to them first and see what they had to say and we'vegot a view of their kind of responses and what they think about, but we'regoing to be sharing a bit of that honor social media. But we got some few about for that andthen we're hoping that as well as that, we can kind of broaden the debate andtald to people beyond just those people as club, because, i being so iconic youknow as the first ever counsel housing. It really prompts out some debatesabout, like what do we think are counts housing. Now. What is it like? You knowwhat what kind of homes to people kind of aspire to? What kind of work one ofthe things that's very noticeable about. It is, and i noticed it when i firstwent now- is how green it is because you know it was planned. You know,that's the thing when you plan a bit of...

...housing, a lot of housing is all is allof being built all over places. Higgety pele. The city comes up in and allkinds of a mess, but a lot of time, but there's something about the plan design. It was a designed by an arter, a jamesthompson, and you know he was. He was at the forefront of of things at thetime, and so he was thinking about housing. That was had a lot of green space. They've gotgood stage, gardens they've got also a really nice comodo green space down themiddle of it with trees on it. We have like an armeny, but basically and forthat to be done for for what he was intending for the anyway for workingclass people, whereas i think really interested in and i kind of thinkthat's the kind of point i want to saw. Look at it. We want to look at it fromlike how it's how it's regarding, and it's just amazing at his last hundredyears on all housing. Last all that long. You know as well and and i thinkfrom what we getting people are pretty proud of it on the whole about you knowit has a bit of an atmosphere of its son, but it will be interesting to sortof explore that and then maybe we'll be able to kind of like log into otherpeople that don't live there but live elsewhere, and what they're thinkingabout their their housing schemes that there from or you know or just just youknow. What is what does the bemother throw up? You know in terms of it mightlink to kind of contemporary issues because it is always as vacia sort ofallude to it is always really high. In the news, politically, housing isalways one of the top subjects like health. Is you know, so you could lookat house and you could be like any period in history. It would have been apolitical hoping so that the history of this particular scheme was closely tiedup with the liberal government at the time and the first world war becausethey were building housing after the first world war, which they calledhomes to fit for heroes, which was a bit of a propaganda thing, will kind ofhappened in some ways and kind of didn't happen, so there's a kind ofwhether it happened or not. You know as much as people wanted it to is a kindof debate that rolls on and then, as you look into it, you know like there'sthese debates and recur over time. You know so you've always got thesequestions coming up f. So it's quite it's quite interesting. I think there'sa really broad subject that we could get into, but what we wanted to do issort of start really small and just be like, because that's all just a likecould be a load of war for, and i mean, and it's interesting for people thatare historians or no academics and know about it, but actually like noteveryone's going to be like going to the charte insthor, ing and conference,or even you know, even being full of the pogis talking about it, but it doesactually affect everyone. You know like people, have a real interest and that'strue in a history, and i think the history is really interesting, becauseyou look at the history and you get a bit of a you aunt ically compared totoday. You know in one way or ever, whether it because it's totallydifferent or because the similarities so like one of the things that'sinterested about logi is like it was. It was like it really cane a buzz inthe city when it came out. Everyone was like. I want one of those houses andthen i can't remember the numbers, but there was a big governin. I think itwas maybe in de a park. I think it was, and there was a big gathering. Her ofpeople like who got to like see the first pictures of what it wasgoing to be like, or something like that. You know so like it got thismassive crowd of people and, like i think that just kind of it's a subjectof you know, that's always going to be popular. Always it doesn't matter whathappens in society, how much things change you're always going to have that.So i think it's really interesting to just sort of like almost just just getthe conversation started and see what people, what people think about allthat really. And what do you think great show? I mean what's your thoughtson like how it's when and how have you enjoyed it, i really have enjoyed itmassively. So much like matthew. I was very new to to date the point where ikind of came in as a community researcher for log iven hundred. So i'donly been levin in dundee sends july that year, so so that was july, twothousand and twenty- and i was very new to the city and also very interested inthe depth and wealth of its local history and a lot of interest reallythroughout different facebook groups,...

...even on twitter and on instagram indundee's local history. Even on platforms like yours andrew. So i wasreally enthusiastic to kind of get involved and the sort of response thatwe had from the survey was really reallyencouraging. All in all, we got a hundred and thirteen responses. So oneof the ways in which we tried to kind of matthews touched upon how housing isso much of that kind of universal theme for people and how much it resonates inpeople's e ready lives and their memories and their childhood and theirconception of family. And we tried to tie that up quite nicely in a centralquestion. Watch this or ve kind of put out andpaused to people, which was what does home mean to you and people reallyengaged with that on across all of our platforms andparticular on on twitter, but also but also an instagram fromthose end and and we os with family connections to logie or those who arepreviously or or current residents of lugi, but amazingly also people whowere loving much further abroad. So we had one leader contact ors, who wasfromasse and again just had this real connection to this place where she hadgrown up and she spent her childhood and a lot of these people were leavingreally enthusiastic and encouraging comments. You know- and it seemedreally important for us to be putting out this project as a kind ofrepository almost for people's memories, because that's how the conversationtook place. You know that's how people chose to answer that quite question.What home meant to them was that it was the police and which they grew up. Itwas the first house that they bought after they got married. It was in logiescheme yeah. Maybe their grandparents had love there. There was such a therewas such a wealth of definite experiences in different connections tothis one place, and i think one of the things that we started to realize quiteearly on, as at there was massive scope for the for the project to take allsorts of like different levels and terms of you know local engagement, butthen also engagement. What the what you do, why olding with people who, asmatthew already to are already working within kind of histories of socialhousing, something that i think i'm quite interested in myself andsomething that i think we wanted the community consultation to do as we'reworking quite closely with two partners at the moment. So we've got done. Yousetter chives and say that you kin who's already been conducting a body ofresearch on moggy and then we've got matthew, jarrin of aretina storicalsociety, and it was actually a bortion society who gave us a small amount ofmoney so that we could conduct as public consultation and reallysupported those throughout that process. With you know, access to resources,worth contacts and really just general support, where we could kind of bounceideas prior to lunch in the survey and the amazing thing about having thosecontacts and actually kind of gaining access to the way of that he serai'salready being conducted as we realized that right from the kind of firstsocial house in a port which is conducted on than nine de five and thenright through into when the houses are built and one thousand nine hundred andtwenty there's not much said about logi after those dates. So really what theconsultation was trying to do, and i because, as matthews already bloody,which really need o the dos and that history, so we've got an idea and we'vegot a picture thanks to don dst archives in the work that we've doneabout logie's past. But what is logis future, and indeed, what does logi looklike in the present, especially this time of calonie us where people havebeen spending so much time at home. Do you know and the implications of thathow halmost kind of taken on new, profound resonances in our lives? Ithink we were really successful and gaining not just that conticent of data.You know about how many persons, like what percentage of people would like toactually engage with this project going forward, but actually getting the morekind of qualitative data about comments andquestions and starting with...

...conversations from people. So that wasreally the wording, and some of that came from the fact that we did put itout as a leaflet for people to like do online. Do this serviniere. We alsohave been your on the social media, so we're on the in were on instagramfacebook. Where, and so we put our survey out there as well, so peoplecould respond. That's kind of where we got. We've had quite a few contactsfrom people that rachel saying about what who used to live there and that'skow. That kind of already adds a sort of interesting to mention to it like,because when you think about i mean housing is like that is in flux. Youknow people are coming and going is are like that. They can't go that changeseven within the people that responded. Some of them were like saying i grew upthere and then i moved away and then my parents died, so i moved back and orbut by that point i had moved to a different street or ever so they hadlike and there's a few of those we're going to try and get into these peoplea bit more find out a bit more about semila if they talked to us a home, andi find it really interesting that you've got a kind of you've got thekind of the people that you know. What kind of makes a sage, and i mean or aplace like- is kind of a mixture of like what you might like your natives,your people that are like the long time, people that have carrying forward thetraditions or whatever it is, and any of those those houses were built for ina way homes for heroes was kind of the bit like the political slogan, but someof them were ex service people that got into them from what we found out. Soit's and you know, and then they pass, or sometimes people pass them onthrough their family, so they stay in the family, but because it's councilhousing, it is well. It's got that leg to people that need it, but then youhave, if you carry on with the timeline of it, you get to things like the rightto buy, which does affect housing a lot, and anyone who knows about housingtalks about that as a big issue, you know, in terms that it has been, isquite negatively seen by a lot of people who work in housing anyway. Isay that because i used i used to work in housing for a while. So i have a bitof a knowledge which kind of led me to find us interesting as well, but but yeah like the right to buyobviously means counts, a houses things not not not allocated to people andbase of need like it is now, but it then becomes privately owned orwhatever so the there's loads of stuff that that i think that we sort of justwe just touching on by doing doing a survey to beginning with them we'rehopefully going to find different ways to engage with people. So do you think it may be a goodresource for other people who might want three centul g in the future, and also me and rachel were talking aboutthis before and do you forth think it will be something that will help withpeople who want three sexual gin about thirty forty fifty years, evenabsolutely, as i was seen before, there's a real kind of it's a reallyinteresting and i think, as matthew was alluding to with with the homes fit for heroscampaign. That was it's a really interesting time in social history andan dundes history. Considering that it is the fresh council housing scheme andit's a it's very much a kind of dundonians and esias, but in terms of even done these identity know as likeas a city of design, you know it's as a housing scheme. It's completely. It was built to be be very kind ofequal, friendly and very efficient. So when james thompson designed the houses,the idea was that they were drun primarily of for electricity, which wascompletely new for its time and that the central keating system would beinvaded from the housing in the central hind would come from the tame or thelocal wash host and be transferred through pit to local houses. So there'sso many there's so many elements and i think matthew gestured towards thatthere's so many elements within this project that would need be byinteresting hasty project and then all to the room right and i think,promoting that history is a real kind of it's an honor. But it's also it's ait's a real inpetis of this project,...

...because there's so many people, adefinite organizations you an we've mentioned dundee, said to archives andsea kins fabulous work. I had it this intin last year i mean there's also somany connections that can men towards this period of dundee history. When youthink about you, know the ten ten and even at the kind of peculi andsituations that done be faces now. So when you, when you're thinking aboutthe history of logie land and the hestate of dundee at the time wherelogie is built, dundes and a massive situation of kind of social deprivation,the between thousand a d, eleven n, n n nineteen and seventeen and there's alot of overcrows, there's a lot of sum housing. So people are really thinkingabout. How can we build homes that are not only economical but equal friendlyand that a low people that kind of space to be within the city and thatspace to move through the city, feely and again that connects massively terto don the use isesi of design and dundee is as something that is verykind of as a time it's very person to in trick? So it's really, you know wewant to be able to as an a coutane being to gail. Are all these differentpeople who have already conducted history on the site, more kind of maybeacademic forms of of learning and of knowledge, and a like the documentsproduced by historical environment, scotland, and bring them together withthe local residents and with people who have previously lived there to kind ofbring together those two types of knowledge. You've got the academicknowledge in one hand, and you've got the kind of first hand, move oralhistory account on the other, or the kind of you could call it like the folkknowledge or ever you know the stuff. That is just what someone tells theirkids or whatever, and it just passes down like that. We just give some givea little bit of a way of people to kind of link it together through you know,having a project based on it, but we are we we're building on what like sar,as already been doing, research in the original families. I hope ly use a bitof that research as well, in whatever we were doing, but yeah, i think, likeis kind of interesting, is that there's loads of sort of like history is notlike some kind of no subject is separate to another subject: they'reall into connected, so you get like an example is like from doing this. We gotsomebody talking. Somebody came back to me who had sent me a book about marylily walker, who was like a social reformer in dundee so like that wasthat was like another bit of history that i i just been finished. Readingthat and she was dead before logi was built, but but at the same time thathistory is not like disconnect. That is a part of why you eventually get theyou know where you get things do get done at a certain point, and why dothey happen? You know so like it's not just because it drops out of the sky.People have to work hard for it one way or another, and it's a i think, justthe most interesting thing is just to just like try and do something thatallows people to have chat about it and have a debate about it, because youknow people will always take different perspectives on what happened. Whethersuch a such was a good thing or not, or you know, whoever housings in p, youmight be, like i mean like rachel soveria, you could be like look at allthe trouble that you still have. You know sometimes- and i mean i do playsabout such history as well and like some like i've, been righting one aboutjenny. Lee, for example, is a politician in the ninne pass found ofthe open university in the s, but he came from like a mining backgroundstuff. So it's like a lot of the stuff. She was saying, like kind ofcriticizing the social conditions at the time about people living in probityin the nine fires and stuff, and there were people that i spoke to today thatwere like going to act in the piece or young people that are right. You knowin the ties that hadn't heard of her or and that they were learning about thatand thinking. Well, you know what that really resonates with like, what'shappening now to them or to what's happened in well. What you could relateto the last few years, but you know certainly since to two thousand a debers a big econome recession, and there was a big conversation in toninetwenty nine. So when you go back into history like that, is you don't see itin a vacuum? You see it. You...

...automatically find relations to now andi think that's a really interesting process. Finally, i'm briefly becausefor nearly to tame what do you hope to see for a walke in future? What you tosee, and how do you hope to see it, as i think, one of the one of the centralthings that that we really want to do is find ways to blend the communitytogether. So those that responded to the save who are actually currentlyliving in logi or had previously haven't lived in moggy, reallyexpressed a want for any kind of historical event or community event. Itcould actually bring local people together under the kind of auspice ofwanting to learn more about the place that they were living in, but i thinkpeople are also very much cleaving that connection and that community with oneone another because of this time of social isolation that we've justendured. So i think in our immedate future we'dbe looking for ways to try and fulfill that that wish you know for ways tobring people together for ways to conduct new types of research throughcreative light tank or to all history through interviewing residents aboutthe experience, but then also, maybe in it, may be in the future. There's waysin which we can kind of try and think about new mediums of putting theseexperiences together. I think we just kind of we kind of come in with acouple of ideas, but it's like we kind of have to let it develop a bit. Thankyou to reach your marthy for that amazing discussion and i really enjoyedwan the bout woge project and what it deems to do and its goals for thefuture, and i wish richanda or the best of you can follow. Wagi project on thesocial medias are on facebook, twitter and instagram, and any support for thewolbe project would be very much appreciated, not just from me, but fromthe the guys on the wage project team as well, and special shout up to thefence girls, who have kingo that you use that one of the new songs as theintro for the the series of the because so thank you very much today and thankyou frost the first episode of the new series. It does be cost once again, i'mon your battor. Thank you for man a he.

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