In 2009, ‘traff’ of the Culture Republic blog said that:
It would be an interesting exercise to make the journey in current times and see what changes have been wrought. One would imagine there would be new freeways, big box retail and neon-lit ‘service centres’, yet still the same air of suburban angst and hopelessness faintly lingering.
Luckily Phil Coomes of the BBC’s ‘Viewfinder’ blog seemed to have the same interest and in September of 2009 embarked upon ‘The Great North Road Trip’.
The idea was to travel the road in search of stories on the recession, just like Graham, Coomes’ choice to follow the A1(M) meant a swift dissection of England from the wealthy city of London, through industrial and post-industrial towns of the midlands and on towards Scotland.
While Coomes’ refers to Graham’s work on a couple of occasions, it is not a complete retracing of locations or ‘After A1: The Great North Road’ style project. It is however a well thought out project in it’s own right and as an archive of a time period is very interesting. I have archived all the posts in the lists below.
- Setting off
- The Barbican
- The Comet
- Brampton Services
- Ex-Little Chef, Wansford
- Cross Leys Farm
- South Witham
- Markham Moor (South)
- Fairburn Ings
- Leeming Bar
- Scotch Corner
- Angel of the North
- Holy Island of Lindisfarne
- Scottish border
There is an audio slideshow created by Phil Coomes and Paula Dear that sums up the weeks travel, hearing direct from the public who have spoken to Coomes adds some weight to the piece and makes me wonder what Graham’s subjects would have spoken about, given the opportunity.
And if you haven’t seen the book yet…