Projects Archive - On the RecordOn the Record


Current projects

THE TEXTURE OF AIR is an art and heritage project honouring two famous hospitals at a moment of change. Eastman Dental Hospital (EHD) and Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital (RNTNEH) both left their historic homes on the Grays Inn Road and united in a new shared facility in October 2019.  

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Memories Kitchen was a series of reminiscence sessions and community feasts inspired by Lambeth residents’ childhood food stories. We brought sheltered housing residents together with their younger neighbours over a menu of delicious food and conversation. Smoke, fishing boats, big pots, baking bread, and foraged fruit fueled the nostalgia of people from Ireland, the Caribbean, West Africa, East Finchley and Columbia alike. The menu was devised by Laura Mitchison and Simon Wroe, riffing on these themes that cut across food memories in many lands. Over 350 people shared stories and ate with us. The wonderful Brixton People’s Kitchen helped us serve the guests and recruit volunteers to train in oral history recording.  The project was supported by NHS Lambeth and …

Holding the Baby is an oral history of childcare and parenting, a podcast series and a travelling, sound-based exhibition. In 2018 – 2019 the exhibition is on tour. Discover more on the website. We asked people from London’s East End to reflect upon the care they received as children and gave as parents, carers and childcare workers. Their answers tell personal and emotional stories, relevant to the experiences of parents today. The stories let us peek into the untold worlds of housework and home, to learn how the devastating impact of higher infant morality rates resonated through the generations, the effects on children called to be ‘little mums’ to their younger siblings, and what people really felt about living with and …

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Previous projects

From December 2014 until the end of April 2017, A Hackney Autobiography: Remembering Centerprise recorded and remembered Centerprise’s work by recording oral history interviews, gathering a permanent archive about Centerprise and running free workshops and events.  . Centerprise was a groundbreaking community centre in Hackney that opened in 1971 and closed in 2012. It hosted a bookshop, publishing project, reading centre, café, youth club, creche and more all under one roof in Dalston. It was not only a place to buy books, it made it possible for local people to write and publish their own works of poetry, autobiography and history. The website is now live. Visit to download the free mobile app, explore the interviews, learning resources and a library of Centerprise …

From boyhood aspirations to grandfatherly wisdom, this open-access exhibition describes Malawian men’s diverse stories about fatherhood. Photographs overlaid with quotations highlight moments of transformation or decision in men’s reproductive journeys, as they navigate romantic relationships, beginning and planning their families, and grapple with threats to their sexual and reproductive health.

On the Record worked with the authors – Fiona Parrott, Green Kapira, Dorothy Makoka, Blessings Mwandosya, Aaron Ndovi, Levie Gondwe, Paston Mkandawire, Misheck Nkhata and Mia Crampin.- from the Karonga Prevention Study (Malawi), the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, and the University of Amsterdam – to produce the online and print exhibition.

Read more and download the exhibition PDF here

Sounds from the Park explored the history and traditions of Britain’s last great open air oratory site; Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park, London. It is a unique oral and visual history comprising an exhibition, radio show, education resources and booklet. You can visit the microsite created for this project here.

Visit the Sounds from the Park project website

In 2014 On the Record worked with Campaign Against Arms Trade on Arming All Sides: the arms trade and the First World War. This project highlighted the parallels between the arms trade then and now, with a particular focus on opposition to the arms trade during and after the war. From Glasgow to Brighton, 25 volunteers created case studies from research into the arms trade and the First World War  and post-war period.  Read some of their early work on the project blog here. Their areas of focus were making and selling arms, resistance to the arms trade by workers and peace campaigners, changes to public attitudes to the arms trade following the war and the influence of the arms …

Visit the Arming All Sides website