University of Hertfordshire

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My Bike, My Bell...

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Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jun 2014

Abstract

An community interactive audio installation, temporarily replacing the church bells of St Mary’s Church, Guilden Morden with the bells of children's bicycles and voices for the weekend of 21/22nd June 2014, only two weeks before the Tour de France came through Cambridgeshire.

Notes

'My Bike, My Bell…' was site and time specific installation, focusing primarily, but not exclusively, on the younger community members of Guilden Morden. It was a playful interactive experience. Rob recorded the voices and bells of young people to create the audio installation in Guilden Morden's St Mary's Church. Targeted at the local community, the work gained documented impact to over 200,000 people and attracted appearances on BBC Radio and ITV television. Rob says: “I've been recording 'the sound' of Guilden Morden with various community members over the past few weeks. I spent a very enjoyable couple of days in Guilden Morden's Primary School and couldn't believe how keen the kids were to take part in the project. 'My Bike, My Bell…' is an interactive audio installation. It will constantly change over time, there’s no fixed start and end point, and will benefit from repeated visits. The interactive aspect is controlled by wireless keypads. In addition, there is a responsive bicycle - a machine on training rollers connected with contact microphones. The project is about our local community, containing sounds created by them, commemorating a particular moment in our history - the time the Tour de France came through Cambridgeshire. This won’t happen again for a while - 'My Bike, My Bell…' tells us what the children sounded like when it happened…" Bells (and bell peals) have an important cultural significance. They may signal important events including births and deaths. They signal subdivisions of time. But they also provide an ambient sound of a village - a sound that may have remained unaltered for centuries and is entirely unique. For the weekend of 21/22 June 2014, the bells of St Mary’s Church clock and tower disappeared allowing the listener to hear the children’s bicycle bells instead, including a new new peal, written especially for the weekend!” 'My Bike, My Bell…' was made possible by a Cycle Legacy Small Grant from Cambridgeshire County Council, in collaboration with Guilden Morden C of E Primary School, the University of Hertfordshire and other community groups.

ID: 9276324