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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Wednesday, May 26, 2004
    What's the world of new media to do with a bunch of residents from Liverpool's towerblocks? Well, lots, actually. For the past few years Tenantspin has been broadcasting online: "a live interactive channel produced by High Rise tenants in Liverpool, UK, [which] aims to promote resident participation in regeneration and social housing issues through constructive debate and shared experience."

    I happened on it tonight while thinking about blogging on a far drier topic - the new sheltered apartments on Brookside Drive, Knotty Ash. And got drawn into the extensive archives, featuring guests of all kinds, particularly edgy creatives who've been involved in all sorts of things with Tenantspin over the years. It's proof, if more is needed, that if you put Liverpudlians in charge of a microphone there's no doubt plenty of constructive debate and shared experience will ensue.

    So... I'm whiling away the evening watching Liverpool Housing Action Trust (HAT) tenants interviewing three of my all-time favourites: (from the left) Will Self, talking about his residency in a city tower block and the art that came out of his encounters there, Bill Drummond successfully persuading his public to buy bits of his Richard Long artwork for a dollar each, and Colin Wayland, a HAT officer who I worked with when he was at Communities Against Poverty, trying to persuade people who know him well that a typical day for him involves an 8.30am (not 10.00) start....