Bringing together thousands of stories

People from across the North East of England are invited to share personal stories about their relationship with nature and the landscape as part of the Green Space Stories project.

Bringing together thousands of stories in a searchable online archive, Green Space Stories will create a snapshot of our connection with nature in 2022, and a source of knowledge for researchers, policy makers, artists and educators.

This unique citizen science project is part of Green Space Dark Skies, one of 10 UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK projects taking place in 2022.

Green Space Stories is a partnership between Walk the PlankNational Parks UK and the University of Salford.

Tony Gates, Chief Executive at Northumberland National Park Authority, said: “Northumberland National Park is loved by many for its stunning landscapes and its genuine sense of peace and tranquillity, an increasingly rare resource in a busy world. For me, it is England’s last great wilderness and wherever I go in the Park, I feel incredibly fortunate to experience a connection with nature and heritage every turn.

“We’re inviting you to share your stories about your experiences in nature and the landscape: whether that’s hiking in the Cheviot Hills, taking in the view from Hadrian’s Wall exploring the reiver heritage in the North Tyne, or stargazing at one of the many Dark Skies Discovery sites in the national park. Your story can be told through writing, photos or recordings through the Green Space Dark Skies website.”

The archive of stories, which will be anonymous, will be available for anyone to view through a searchable, easy-to-use dashboard and will form a treasure trove of knowledge about the public’s relationship with nature in 2022.

Stories might be used by artists to inspire songs, poems, artworks, films or books; by government organisations or local councils to inform and shape policies; researchers looking for information; educators or community groups, or people who want to hear stories from others like them, or who differ from them.

There is no story too short to tell and no experience that we cannot learn from. Green Space Stories is just as interested in hearing about daily dog walks, as in hearing stories about bigger adventures.