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Future of St Helier community arts project with Hautlieu students

A Masterplan community arts and education project by Hautlieu A-Level students documenting diverse areas of town using photography has been completed and is now displayed on hoarding at the International Finance Centre.

The project based on the theme ‘Future of St Helier’ involved students exploring specific streets, areas and neighbourhoods around the urban Vingtaines of St Helier. This was accomplished by students researching past archives and images examining St Helier’s built-environment, urban living, diverse communities, town planning, land use and re-generation projects.

Students also researched historical town records, including past and present Masterplans and the current review of the Future of St Helier. The students also analysed images from collections in the Société Jersiaise Photographic Archive, depicting St Helier’s town and life back in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Supported by a series of workshops, students learned about narrative in contemporary photography and how to construct a visual story using their images from shoots as an inspiration for their own photographic work.

The outcome of students’ work was first published in a 52-page newspaper supplement distributed with the Jersey Evening Post in September. The newsprint has now been transformed into an outdoor display installed onto the temporary hoarding at the International Finance Centre adjacent to the recently completed Trenton Square.

St Helier’s Constable Simon Crowcroft kindly contributed with the foreword and shared his personal vision for the future of St Helier. The Constable said “I welcome the involvement of Hautlieu students in the ongoing development of St Helier’s Esplanade Quarter and Waterfront, especially as most of them are likely to be involved in the future uses of these areas, whether as residents, workers or as members of the States Assembly. The Masterplan project is an exciting way of commenting on and informing the urban agenda through the lens of the camera and including a valuable historical perspective.”

Martin Toft, photographer and teacher commented; “These fascinating images provide an opportunity to see how young people have explored and interpreted diverse areas of town, using photography as a tool to communicate how they feel about the Future of St Helier”.

Project partners and collaborators included; Jersey Development Company, Camerons, MJP Architects, Société Jersiaise Photographic Archive, Archisle: The Jersey Contemporary Photography Programme and Masterplan project.

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