My Local Lockdown Life online exhibition
The My Local Lockdown Life project was created to collect the experiences of BCP council residents during the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdowns. Thank you to everyone who submitted. A small selection of pieces is displayed digitally here to give a snapshot of the different creative activities inspired by the lockdowns. Poole Museum will keep a historical record of them for future generations, and a selection of them may go on display in the future.
You still have the chance to share your 2020 lockdown experiences. Artwork can be submitted digitally to email@example.com.
March 23 2020
Carla wrote this poem following Boris Johnson’s announcement of the first national lockdown - a word which she found frightening because it had never happened before. Carla plans to add the poem to her family archives.
A trickle of news filtered through,
Social media began to chatter.
The whispers flowed over the country.
Unease stamped its claim on my face.
Monday evening the whole nation paused,
And my heart thumped in to my mouth.
Boris sat and stared straight ahead,
He spoke, and we all held our breath.
"From this evening you must stay at home"
He announced in a serious voice.
"Only go out and shop if its necessary.
Exercise once a day if you can"
Oh I remember how shaken I felt.
The fear, not for me but my family,
My parents so vulnerable and frail
And my grown children a distance away.
I reached for my husband's hand,
Turned to glance at his face in fear
And saw mirrored the wide eyed stare
Of an uncertain and alien time.
Those words I will always remember,
As a shiver ran down my spine.
Our life would be different from now,
A 'new normal' was here to stay.
Queuing for Lidl
9 April 2020
David sketched this scene while queuing, as many of us did, to enter the supermarket during lockdown.
My Lockdown Life
19 March – 25 April 2020
As she worked from home, Dawn began to document her lockdown experience by taking a photo every day. This composition is one of three which illustrate her life from March until August.
Leisure in Lockdown
Leslie used William Henry Davies’s poem, Leisure (1911), as inspiration for her own poetic piece. Her response uses some of Davies’s words to reflect her experience of the 2020 lockdown.
What is this life if full of care
we’re not allowed in groups out there.
We’re not allowed to shop or browse
or lie outdoors like sheep or cows.
But time to walk in broad daylight
a pleasure now that time’s not tight,
and time to see in roads we pass
flowered verges long with grass.
And time to cycle, jog or run,
to work from home, get baking done.
Without the long commute each day
we have the time to chat and play.
A poor life when - before this scare -
we had no time to stand and stare.
William Henry Davies
What is this life if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
No time to stand beneath the boughs
And stare as long as sheep or cows.
No time to see, when woods we pass,
Where squirrels hide their nuts in grass.
No time to see, in broad daylight,
Streams full of stars, like skies at night.
No time to turn at Beauty's glance,
And watch her feet, how they can dance.
No time to wait till her mouth can
Enrich that smile her eyes began.
A poor life this is if, full of care,
We have no time to stand and stare.
Toilet Roll Cardboard Octopus
Surprise Décor By My Elder One For My Birthday
March and August 2020
These photos are a small selection of the many creative activities Rupali and her family organised while the schools were closed. Both Rupali and her youngest daughter celebrated their birthdays during lockdown.
Extract of prose and photograph
During lockdown, Sally found enjoyment in walking and her old gold trainers. Her piece includes descriptions of the social interactions and nature she encountered during her walks.
Who knew that a pair of gold coloured trainers with a red tick on the side, bought for £6.50 in TK Maxx 15 years ago, who knew they would become a lifesaver? I’ve never been a trainer kind of gal, yeah of course I own a pair but only to wear to my Zumba or Pilates class. My two teenage girls, of course, live in trainers and even my eldest daughter whose in her 30s now (she won’t thank me for saying that) – well, I’ve never seen her in anything but, but me?, no thank you. Anyway, I saw the gold trainers and they appealed to the inner me and I can remember thinking “they might come in handy one day”.
Who knew that in the Spring of 2020, the corona virus would hit? I remember the initial shock of seeing the empty shelves in the supermarkets, the speed of which things changed. My aqua-fit class was one of the last to take place in the local gym at the end of March. We were depleted down to a total of about nine regulars (whereas previous classes had held, maybe 60?) in a dimly lit gym. This is slightly worrying, I thought as I came out of the gym, walking across a deserted car park. I called into the local library on the way home and stocked up with ten large print books – feeling guilty for carrying so many, but somehow strangely feeling a bit more prepared for what was to come.
Lockdown hit, schools were closed and we remained at home, not sure of what was happening…Boris announced we were allowed out for one form of exercise a day. I can do this I said to myself, so I pulled on my normal trainers and walked the length of the nearest main road and back – not a great distance, about 3 kilometres, but to someone who used the car daily, this was an achievement. It was a bit of an effort but the main thing hampering me were the trainers – they’d never felt natural on my feet and I always felt like I was walking a bit like Norman Wisdom! Hang on, didn’t I have a pair of gold trainers somewhere?......
Well, the next day, garbed in the said gold trainers, I took to the streets again, walking down roads I’d only driven down before. Certainly easier in the gold trainers, they were a bit old school and seemed to fit my feet better. I felt more positive in myself. I did suggest to my husband that maybe he’d like to come with me, but he looked at me as if I’d suggested travelling to the moon and went back to playing a game on his phone. I took to going for a walk every day, slowly increasing the distance, widening my little adventurous circle. If my feet hurt, or I didn’t fancy walking for so long that day – then I didn’t have to, I was my own boss. Armed with my baseball hat (again – a first!), sunglasses and MP3 player, I was off. I found I enjoyed it, I could clear my head, listen and laugh along with the radio (by this time the presenters were all working from home). I could cross previously busy roads without hardly looking left and right – there were no cars on the road, the whole atmosphere changed and there was a ghostly feel about the place, but strangely I was starting to enjoy myself although I felt guilty for even thinking this […]
Scan of thank you notes
Elaine volunteered as part of BCP Council's ‘Together We Can’ scheme during lockdown. She spent much of her time helping neighbours and six households by doing their food shops.
Acrylic on canvas
Inspired by the cubism art movement, Francis’s painting portrays many different aspects of the pandemic from new hobbies and family walks, to panic buying, death tolls and heartbreak.
Nick used oil paints to create this piece. If you look closely, you can read the sign on the gate which has similar messaging to the government announcements during the first lockdown.
Sunflowers of Southbourne
5 August 2020
When walking around his local area, Gordon filmed clips of all the sunflowers he saw. These were planted as part of a Covid Community Campaign.
My Local Lockdown Life was created by BCP Council in partnership with Poole Museums, Arts by the Sea, Dorset Race Equality Council, Pavilion Dance South West, BCP Libraries and Poole Housing Partnership.