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Archive for July, 2015

Computer course supports beginner users

In March¬†2015 Joan Roberts started the Tuesday morning beginners’ computer course at Knowle West Media Centre.¬†She was a complete beginner but has quickly gained confidence, and is now typing documents, using the internet and email.

We asked Joan what she thought was the best thing about the course and she said:¬†“How helpful all the tutors are.¬†They speak very plainly so I understand.”

Here you can see Joan being helped by Rob Hopson, one of our volunteers.

Rob Joan Use jpg

Knowle West TV comes back to our screens

Be transported back to the 1970s as community cable returns to your TV screens this summer.¬†MADE in Bristol Television will be screening a half-hour special about Bristol Channel’s Knowle West TV every week from Friday 10th July, 8pm.

From discussions about the women’s liberation movement and the 1974 General Election to music¬†from local bands and street interviews, the films provide a fascinating and witty insight into life in¬†Bristol and Knowle West in the 1970s.¬†Tune in to Freeview channel 8, Sky 117 or Virgin 159!

Bristol Channel was a community cable TV initiative, one of five in the UK authorised in the early 1970s. It was set up by Rediffusion, at the time the UK’s largest cable company, and reached 23,000 homes in Bristol via Rediffusion’s cable network in 1973. Between 1973-75, a team of volunteers and staff from Bristol Channel worked with organisations and communities across Bristol to record hundreds of hours of footage.

Knowle West TV was one of the strands of programming broadcast on Bristol Channel between December 1973 and March 1975, when the channel closed. Local residents were trained to use a portapak (one-inch portable TV unit) to shoot footage, which was then converted to one-inch standard IVC videotape. Just over 21 hours of local material was produced and 38 hours were transmitted.

The Bristol Channel film archive is currently stored at the British Film Institute in London, and the administrative paper archive at Bristol Record Office. In 2014, the Knowle West TV stock was digitized. As well as being archived by KWMC, copies of digitised footage are also held at Bristol Record Office, alongside the paper archive.

Keen to identify the people and places in the footage, and explore the parallels with contemporary experiences of life in Knowle West, KWMC and the Know Your Bristol project collaborated to bring the footage back to the community that had inspired and produced it forty years ago.

This summary draws on a study of the station and its output written by Peter Lewis, the Station Manager.


Young people represent Bristol in international Culture Jam


In July two young people from KWMC represented Bristol and presented their prototype for a new game to a packed audience in Vienna.

Europeana Creative Culture Jam was the final showcase event of Europeana Creative, a groundbreaking project that explores ways for creative industries to connect with cultural heritage. The two-day event was held at the Austrian National Museum in Vienna, with participants attending from across Europe.

Earlier this year we hosted a Culture Jam pre-event, where young people aged 13-18 spent the day exploring content from Europeana‚Äôs digital cultural heritage archive. They were given the following brief: ‚Äėcreate a product that reuses archives and/or enables people to view archives in an interesting way.’

The group of 14 were introduced to the cultural heritage archive, discovering what archives look like and how they can be re-used, then they took part in five workshops facilitated by a laser cutter design artist, a playground engineer, a games designer, a clothes designer and a creative arts practitioner.

The young people then had 45 minutes to research the archives, come up with an idea, create a prototype and finally present back to the wider team. Some of the ideas were:

A chessboard, with 3D printed figures using archive character designs. The chessboard itself would use simple light and dark archive photographs as the board squares (Louis, 13)

A 2D computer game called ‚ÄėTime Jump‚Äô, targeted at young people aged 10-16. Time Jump takes the gamer through different time periods in different countries, from cave person to robot. As the character goes through the levels the background scene will use archive images (e.g. Barcelona streets from 1960s). Challenges and objects within each scene will incorporate archive (e.g. the character will wear First World War uniforms taken from a historic photo if jumping through Germany during this time) (Kieran, Casey, Weronike & Nishan, all 13)

A playground designed using images of archive chocolate wrappers! (Mohammad, 14)

Kieran and Casey travelled out to Vienna with our team to present Time Jump to the other Culture Jam teams.

Mena Fombo, our Programme Manager (Young People), said:¬†‚ÄėThe Jam was great: there was really a positive energy in the room. Most young people had never heard of archives or prototypes before the event, and by the end of the day most of them had given presentations on their re-use of archive to the whole room. I was astounded by some of the prototypes ‚Äď young people brought some really innovative, new and exciting ides to the table, and they did it in such a short time ‚Äď if only we could now make them all!‚Äô

Pupils attended the Bristol Jam from the following schools and colleges: Bridge Learning Campus, City Academy, Ashton Park, City of Bristol College and Bristol Steiner School.


Contact Us

Knowle West Media Centre
Leinster Avenue
Knowle West
+44 (0) 117 903 0444

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