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Ageing Creatively links Enborne Primary School and Fair Close Day Center for Coronation Poetry Project

On Thursday 27 April, Corn Exchange Newbury’s Ageing Creatively programme presented Words Together, a series of inter-generational workshops based on The King’s Coronation with author and poet Becci Fearnley which linked children from Enborne Primary School with visitors of Fair Close Day Centre.

This inter-generational project, delivered in the Spring of this year, focussed on the theme of the Coronation. Working with visitors of Fair Close Day Centre and 30 KS1 children from Enborne Primary School, the sessions at the school were delivered over three, one-hour workshops at each venue. With the working title of ‘King for a Day’, at the first workshop, poet Becci guided the children to begin creating their own poetry. The second session taught the children how to edit and redraft their work and the last workshop focussed on tips and techniques for performing their work.

The three sessions at the Day Centre took the shape of guided conversation on memories of the late Queen’s Coronation along with hopes and thoughts for the new King and his road ahead. From these conversations, the poet produced a poetic response that became the participants’ final poems.

For the finale of Words Together, the young people visited the Day Centre and spent the morning meeting with their counterparts and learning a little about each other.

Ageing Creatively Coordinator Katy Stevens commented, ‘Reading their poems out to a captivated audience was an experience the young people will carry with them for a long time and feedback from all directions was very moving. The children presented their beautiful poems as well as an illustrated book that they’d made especially for the Fair Close visitors, with Becci then reading out the Fair Close poems to the children. This brilliant intergenerational project was enjoyed by all and the children loved getting to know everyone but a special mention goes to one of the participants, a lady aged ninety-one who was previously a past pupil at Enborne School!’

School children in blue jumpers stand proudly next to a group of elderly people

Young people from Enborne Primary School commented:

'When we came to Fair Close Day Centre, I loved sharing my poem.'

'I really enjoyed going to Fair Close and talking to the people there, especially Courtney and Allan who were talking about the war, it was very interesting. I also really liked Margaret and her teacups that she showed us. It was interesting to hear about her dancing career, she danced at the West End! I really enjoyed writing poetry and sharing it with the people at Fair Close and their poems were really good too.' (Lyla)

Find out more about the Ageing Creatively Programme here.