The trail is available here as a small booklet
that you can print and make up to take on a family visit to the cemetery. You will need a printer with 4 sheets of paper, scissors and a flat surface. The booklets are fun to make and this instructional video
will help you.
The trail draws on ideas and stories from workshops run by CCI for children and families from St Matthew's Primary School, Brunswick Nursery and ACE Nursery during spring 2010. Together with artists Deb Wilenski and Filipa Pereira-Stubbs, they explored and found ways to see anew a space many were familiar with.
Parents who came to the workshops said:'It was lovely the way we started off... To me, almost slightly meditational... focusing on the detail of the moment, feeling the thing...'
'One of the things that was really nice was that it was children-led. It was for them. So if they want to run off and do something, we just follow. I found that really liberating and really good fun, rather than be trying to channel them into things. We could just follow them with what they were doing.'
The trail follows the curiosity and imagination of the children and families in the workshops but there are also spaces for you to write about or draw the things you find interesting. It is offered as a starting point, for you to play with and make your own. Deb Wilenski
and Filipa Pereira-Stubbs
, CCI artists, were inspired by the space:'What struck us first was the quietness and sense of remove from Mill Road, the greenness and feeling of opening space. The birdsong seemed incredibly loud, the sounds of the traffic and commerce and daily life much further away. It felt almost miraculous, definitely magical, very intriguing. We were drawn to some of the really big trees, the worlds under them. We noticed some were actually growing out of graves, others had graves under the shade of their branches.
'It seemed a place of keen contrasts. Big and little (huge old trees, tiny spring leaves), sound (birdsong) and silence (graves), movement and stillness, dark and light, open space and hidden space, human tidiness and wild rambling chaos, clear paths and unmarked ways.
'It also seemed a place of untold stories. Some were minimal, some cryptic, all incomplete, intriguing and unknown. There were ways in through these stories, to places where children play: stories of castles under beech trees, battles at sea, creatures coming alive, games of hide and seek…
'We offered a way into the cemetery through some of these explorations and perceptions. We invited the children to open their senses and explore through sight, sound, touch, smell. We also invited them to move into the space and find a special place for themselves, to go on a journey away from the main paths. We invited them to settle, to stop, to see what was there. And we invited them to imagine, and to share their stories.
'We noticed how much the children enjoyed lying on their backs, staying quiet, rolling and playing under the trees. We talked about the places we could go. Together with the children, we agreed that we wouldn’t climb on the gravestones, pick wild flowers or harm animals.' www.cambridgecandi.org.uk