The Surrey Hills Story Trail is a project funded by the Surrey Hills Sustainable Development Fund to bring fictional and historical stories about the Surrey Hills together, for adults and children to enjoy.
The project funded Janet Dowling, a professional storyteller and member of the Surrey Storytellers Guild, to research the tales that were hidden in the folklore books and history books and to retell a series of fascinating stories, for everyone to share.
Janet has produced eight stories that have been researched, told and retold in schools in Surrey.
The stories can be seen, read, and told by selecting this link to the Surrey Hills web site.
Members of the Surrey Storytellers Guild hope to develop this work.
To view the Home page of the Surrey Hills web site click here.
Foundation Proposal for the Surrey Hills Story Trial Project
A project funded by Surrey hills Sustainable Development Fund to make the traditional stories of the area more accessible to all parts of the community and in particular families and children.
How are you planning to meet these aims?
To research the traditional stories from existing collections, references in older travel books, and interviewing people in the locality who have identified themselves as having an interest in local stories. To work with the stories to get them into a form whereby they can either be "told" or read aloud, and there will be some performances in local schools. These stories will initially be put on the Surrey Hills Website.
This would be the first part of a project to develop a Surrey Hills Story Trail.
What are you planning to do/produce?
The stories will be performed by a professional storyteller in local schools and other venues around National Storytelling Week in February 2009, and children encouraged to draw pictures of some of the stories - some of which might be suitable for the Surrey Hills Website.
For a later project these could be developed into a book for use in schools and families, with the stories available on interpretation boards at the sites where they occurred.
Who will benefit?
The stories on the website would be a resource for local schools to learn more about the local area, and the cultural heritage that these stories derive from. They could be a starting point for children to create their own stories of their communities.
The stories on the website could also be a resource for working with immigrant and refugee communities, to learn more about the local heritage.
The stories could be used in reminiscence work with older people, to explore their knowledge of the stories, find variants, or even find other stories.
Local families could access them, and retell them as a way of encouraging young people to use the countryside by exploring the places where the stories occurred.
Other artists could access them, and use them as a basis for their artistic interpretations.