PETT and THE FIRST TASTE OF AUTUMN!


In this issue:
  1. From the Barns House Visitors Book
  2. A Busy two months in Barns Centre
  3. Congratulations!
  4. New on the website.
  5. In the Archive
  6. Endnotes
PETT eNewsletter 23. September 12th, 2016
 
afruca2016
A wonderful group from AFRUCA held a retreat here and left us a wonderful handmade display from the gardens and grounds.
 

1. From the Barns House Visitors Book:

  • 31 August 2016: "Peaceful and lovely place still doing good work."
  • 27 July 2016: "Wonderful place. Thank you."
  • 25 July 2016: "Was great fun as it was a large place, so kids were entertained."
 

2. A Busy Two Months in Barns Centre

It has been a very busy two months in the conference and accommodation Centre: Setting aside our 50th anniversary event, there have been celebrations overspilling from the accommodation into caravans, camper vans, tents and marquees in the grounds; a number of residential courses; visitors from as far away as New Zealand and the Philippines; a Baobab Centre for Young Survivors in Exile retreat; an AFRUCA retreat (see above); Archive Weekends; Wennington's AGM...

And in-between, the grass is being cut and the refurbishment and repainting of the facilities is going on, thanks to Robert and Antony; and despite the sunshine and rain, the grounds are surprisingly weed-lite, thanks to the Baobab young people and team, and a visiting Danny Houston. It's been an apple-growing year, and fortunately several of the Wennington old scholars took apples with them after their AGM, helping to make sure the apples don't go to waste. The blackberries are ripening all around us as we write.

 

3. CONGRATULATIONS!

PETT! Which has officially turned 50!! (But you knew that!). CLICK HERE

The HANK NUNN INSTITUTE, the Bangalore/Bengaluru-based therapeutic community organisation, which celebrated its 2nd birthday on July 2nd! For more information on this growing and ambitious Therapeutic Community programme CLICK HERE.

MATT PETTLE, the Trinity Catholic School student who was part of the performance troupe which created "MAL-ER-JUH'S-TED" for the "Therapeutic Living With Other People's Children" project and wrote about it in his book "Through the Eyes of a Child"; and who earlier this year organised a workshop involving fellow students in the Applied Performance Course in the School of Acting at Birmingham City University and PETT Fellow Carolyn Mears: Matt has graduated with a First! and has set off on the PGCE course to become a full-fledged teacher.

To get a copy of Matt's book "Through the Eyes of a Child", CLICK HERE:
Our work on the Other People’s Children project began back in 2010. We came together as a group to showcase the stories of children who had passed through the British care system between the 1930’s and the 1980’s. We knew from the very beginning that it would be a massive project to undertake, however with strong will and determination we knew we could succeed in creating a modern and unique piece that would capture the hearts and minds of many. "


ISOBEL TOY, Birmingham University medical student and researcher in the Archive, who has been awarded a First! for her dissertation on the History of Animal Assisted Therapy, a copy of which is now in the Archive!

The MUSEUM OF HOMELESSNESS, spearheaded by Matt and Jessica Turtle, which has found a home, thanks to the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and SmallWorks! Motto: "Making the Invisible Visible". Object: "The Museum of Homelessness will put people in touch with both objects and stories to give them a physical feel for the lives of those who have experienced homelessness and the values of the societies in which they lived."
For the MoH Facebook page CLICK HERE.
For the MoH website and to subscribe to their newsletter CLICK HERE.


The WOODCRAFT FOLK, with the newly-published, HLF-supported "A People's History of Woodcraft Folk" (ed. by Phineas Harper), featuring contributions from Annebella Pollen among others, and a Foreword by Jeremy Corbyn MP ("Camping with Woodcraft Folk all over Britain and in Finland has given me some of the happiest and most fulfilling times of my life."). To order the book directly from Woodcraft Folk, CLICK HERE.


"WHAT WE HIDE" the 2014 novel by Wennington's MARTHE JOCELYN - which draws (loosely, she writes) on her year at Wennington School - and which has won the inaugural Amy Mathers Teen Book Award. You can order the book online - CLICK HERE. - but be aware that it IS racy!
Marthe's own very full and award-laden website is here: CLICK HERE


THE EARLY PESTALOZZI CHILDREN PROJECT - spearheaded by Will Eiduks and Len Clarke - who will be presenting at the inaugural, the very first, Founders Day Event at the Pestalozzi International Village on October 24th. CLICK HERE.


PADDY BUTCHER, who has drawn together the work of numerous volunteers over numerous years, and has completed the mammoth task of transcribing and formatting the Wennington School Senate Minute Book. He is also nearing completion on the Minutes of the Council. The Senate Minute Book is a fascinating and detailed record of the daily life and dynamics of a democratically-based progressive boarding school between 1958 and 1975. Important and fascinating.

 

4. New on the website

1. "A note from Executive Director Richard Rollinson: Our Gathering on 15 July 2016...Important Work and A Good Time Together"

  • Rich's report on the event held to celebrate PETT's 50th anniversary, and to think together about the financial and other challenges facing small charities at this point in the 21st Century.

2. "Letter from Shama: Celebrating two years of the Hank Nunn Institute"

  • PETT Fellow Shama Parkhe celebrates the experiences of creating a therapeutic community provision in India, with an update on initiatives in progress on HNI's second birthday.

3. "Caldecott Archive Week (new friends and deeper meanings)"

  • Two Archive Weeks in one year? And still work to be done?!! How amazingly overflowing this community is...

4. "On Boundaries...Hank Nunn...[an appreciation of the life of a mentor, teacher, friend] Fr. Henry Patrick Nunn S.J. (Hank) 23.01.1930 to 31.07.2016, by Anando Chatterji"

  • An appreciation of the life of a mentor, teacher, friend, and therapeutic community pioneer in India.

5. Kitchen Maids, Internees and Grand Pianos...

  • Sam Doncaster on unexpected gifts from abroad, and their revelation of intersections musical and human in World War II Wennington School.

6. Archival Pleasures: Summer walking to work.

  • "Summer builds into the first wave of harvest, when many people are away, and email falls quiet". Pictures and words.

7. An Archive Weekend to Remember: Finchden Manor

  • ALL Archive Weekends are memorable, but this one had special features and was a first. And check out "Die Ros' ist ohn' Warum..."

8. Mr. Lyward's Introduction to Finchden Manor. Transcribed from a Dictation Tape 25/5/66

  • Digitised from a reel to reel audio tape in the Alan Wendelken Collection in time for the Finchden Archive Weekend, this is the voice of George Lyward himself introducing the influential therapeutic community for young men: "It is so fluid that it has a way of eluding description. I am not surprised when people assume that the fluidity will lead to the acting out of its members, which must result in disorder and destruction. But its fluidity, its open-endedness, is in fact the source of its firmness."

9. 2016.055; opening up the Dennie Briggs Collection: a first reporting back

  • "Even speaking as an archivist who has taken in many remarkable collections, this one is breathtaking: Maxwell Jones, in full flow, discussing and debating with social work students at North London Polytechnic in 1972 (!), and in 1966 seminar with teachers (!); a 1955 recording at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Oakland, California (!); a Chino, California, prison therapeutic community community meeting from 1961 (!)...."

10. The Kaki Tree, August 24, 2016

  • Thriving! Note the tents of celebration in the background.
   

5. In the Archive


First, a great big thankyou to volunteer Bob Lawton. One of the behind-the-scenes debates of the "Therapeutic Living" project was whether members of one community would have the faintest interest in the history and archives of another. We found the answer to that in "Yes", and Bob has taken it further: for example, recently making huge inroads into cataloguing the Dennie Briggs audio tape collection. This is so helpful.

Meanwhile, the annual August Closure of the Archive didn't happen. As an intensely engaged archive we desperately need at least one clear month a year to make a mess, audit, and catch up with as many of the pragmatically set-aside day-to-day housekeeping tasks as possible. We're thinking December now. But events and needs took over and inverted August into a very busy (and enjoyable!) time, a seamless roll-over from July. And June. And May. And April. And March. And February.....

Throughout July and August the Archive has been physically and spiritually filled over and over again by individuals and events: The PETT 50th anniversary stakeholders event; a Red Hill old boy; David Jones of the University of East London on multiple research forays, getting deeper into that exciting phase when the people in the Hawkspur Camp archives come alive and start asking questions; Rex Haigh and Steve Pearce raising the tone and interacting with early arrivals for the Wennington AGM; the Museum of Homelessness folks; Claire Wendelken, alone and with others, culminating in a mid-week Finchden Manor Archive Weekend; a full week Caldecott Archive Weekend; that Wennington old scholars AGM, with 24 people, at least some of whom had not been to the Archive before, and/or for a long time; interactions with the Baobab folks; a major celebration of anniversary with old friends and new appearing. And some sad but joyous occasions: for example, the funeral of local artist Tom Lal, who personally experienced the Partition of India and lost his childhood and home in Lahore, and gave so much to children and adults at New Barns School.

As for work: There have been well over a dozen new archive and library accessions, among them the Dennie Briggs Archives; and six recordings added to the oral history collections: including a lovely interview organised by University of East London's Alice Sampson in a comfortable Oxfordshire pub with Sally Cooper, who grew up before and in the Mulberry Bush School established by her parents and became a group and family therapist herself.

In the Archive, Helen Moore continues to make inroads into cataloguing books and other publications towards a National Child Care Library: having moved on from 75 publications in the Maurice Bridgeland Collection, she then catalogued 402 items in Jim Hyland's Library, and has now moved into the 23 boxes of books and publications we were given from the Library of the National Children's Bureau Practice Development Department 2011: Helen is currently on 2,891 catalogue entries, and there is still a significant series of collections to go. Belinda Boyes, meantime, has joined the team to re-catalogue the children's files of the Mulberry Bush School as part of the British Academy-funded partnership between University of East London and PETT to explore and discover the depths of relationship and difference revealed in the Hawkspur Camp case files (1936-1940), in dialogue with those of the Mulberry Bush School (1948 onwards): rediscovering a child whose papers had mistakenly been filed in the folder of another with a similar name in the process, for example; and teasing apart brothers and sisters filed in a single folder. Watching the school itself evolve through the documents which were generated and kept, and the systems adopted for managing them.

Craig has been busy outside as well. At the beginning of July, at the annual Oral History Society conference in London he chaired two paper sessions and delivered a paper on the Dundee University oral history course, which he authors and tutors within the Centre for Archive and Information Studies. At the beginning of September he delivered a presentation to the annual Archives and Records Association conference, calling it "Creating places of belonging: Reflections on 'Therapeutic Living With Other People's Children' - a transformational experience". For his thoughts on writing and delivering conference papers, see: "Writing conference papers is an agricultural process." For something from the paper itself, see the paragraph below. This was a message sent by Stephen Steinhaus in the lead-up to the presentation. Stephen was at Trinity Catholic School in Leamington Spa during the project, and is now Vice Principal of Whitley RSA Academy in Coventry. For obvious reasons this quote capped the body of the paper, before Craig launched into a brief but powerful Conclusion, drawing on personal loss, and the magnificent experience of the unveiling of the Reinden Wood House plaque earlier this year:

"The OPC PROJECT has been life-altering and career changing for me, and its influence is still felt (for me) even now. ... Without the project I may never have found the passion for and calling to Inclusion as my main focus as an educator... A calling that now, as I look to Move into headship, has given me a very specific focus on both the type of school to move to but also the type of school I want to lead/create and the kind of students I want to work with and for in the future. I'm so thankful to have been a part of it and STILL excited at how what I have learned is shaping my future and the futures of my students."

 

6. Endnotes


THE COMMUNITY OF COMMUNITIES NEWSLETTERS are worth reading. The Spring 2016 edition is still available: CLICK HERE to download (pdf)

DO YOU FANCY A CATERED ARCHIVE WEEKEND? - lunches and dinners prepared in the background while you dive into cataloguing, scanning, identifying, recording, transcribing, building websites, and all the other things that go on...? And do you mind sharing your space, discoveries, mealtimes and conversation with people with other interests, from other communities? No? Then you're not alone! We've had a request to try to set one up! Catered Archive Weekends are not financially viable unless ten or more people take part...the cost of cooking and food and all that just makes it too expensive. But if you like people and different communities, and love Archive Weekends (and who doesn't), and would like to be part of a mixed-community Archive Weekend, get in touch! We will try to put one together. Contact Craig: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • And remember: Archive Weekends don't have to take place on the Weekend.

THE ISPS INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE takes place in Liverpool next year - August 30th to Deptember 3rd, 2017. ISPS is the "International Society for Psychological and Social Approaches to Psychosis", and it is closely interwoven with the therapeutic community movement generally. The conference theme is "Making Real Change Happen", and they are calling for papers now. To submit a proposal, register to attend, or for more information about ISPS and the conference, CLICK HERE.


Coming up in October - October 18/19 - a Witness Seminar based Reunion of the PHOENIX UNIT at Littlemore Hospital, Oxford. An influential therapeutic community. Were you a member of staff or student there? Get in touch, initially via Craig: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 
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