‘Stories which need to be told’

Chrissie is currently offering supported life story writing sessions with families whose stories need to be told. Contact us if you would like to know more about this.

My first contact with M was through the Erewash rEvive ‘Art in an Empty Shop’ initiative when I’d led workshops and drop in sessions for Erewash residents who wanted to being Life Story Writing in the former Burton’s shop on Bath Street Ilkeston.

That encounter brought me to visit an extraordinary household, a home full of stories which needed to be told, and I was privileged to be invited to hear them.

I knew I was at the right house – the steps down to the front door were edged with a shining silver access ramp bar on which I guessed M would glide up to join the other forty thousand people who call Ilkeston, a former mining town in the Erewash Valley, their home. I headed down the steps knowing that this was no ordinary house. Plant pots and small intriguing pieces of craftwork dangled from trellis. Spring bulbs peeped into the chilly afternoon. Two bright coloured tightly coiled snakes, tongues outstretched, wound themselves around the top and bottom uprights supporting the handrail. I wondered if they were real. They were not. A black and white cat sunbathed on a rooftop canopy. I wondered if it was real. It was.