Past Time

We are pleased to have developed a project with Rideout (Creative Arts for Rehabilitation) and HMP Hewell that will introduce men at the prison to themes in history and food culture through theatre techniques in a series of workshops this March.

The project, Past Time, will use Rideout’s 20+ years’ experience of working in prison and other secure environments to explore the changing nature of prison food and its effects on physical and mental health. Research staff from our project will provide original historical material, which participants at HMP Hewell will explore and discuss during the workshop.

As part of the workshops, the men will work towards two qualifications in Food Hygiene and Nutrition and create a piece of theatre. The theatre piece will be performed at the prison twice. The first performance will be for the general prison population; the second performance will be for invited guests, including family. At both performances, audience members will have the opportunity to sample food made by the participants.

A photographer will document the project, from workshop to performance, focusing primarily on the food creations. The photographs will be included in a photographic publication and a small exhibition of the project at Tate Modern in June (part of Warwick’s participation in the Tate Exchange).

For a personal reflection of the project, read Dr Margaret Charleroy’s blog on Past Time here.

The project has been generously supported not only by the Wellcome Trust and Arts Council England but also the University of Warwick’s Food and Connecting Cultures Global Research Priorities, its Departments of History and Theatre Studies, and their Centre for the History of Medicine.

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