Bright light show helps to bring the hidden stories of a city to life

The You, Me and Everyone projection onto The Portsmouth Guildhall
The You, Me and Everyone projection onto The Portsmouth Guildhall
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IT’S a place where concerts and exhibitions are held – now Portsmouth Guildhall has been used to help tell the story of city life.

A stunning display of people’s stories, thoughts and experiences of life in Portsmouth were projected on the outside of the historic building to mark the completion of the You, Me & Everyone in Portsmouth project.

As previously reported, more than 1,000 people sent in submissions which were put together into one epic tale of modern society.

Phrases like ‘Love Albert Road, it’s the beating heart of Southsea’ and ‘Kingston Cemetery, my special place, my wife is buried there’ flashed up as people went by.

London-based project ReAuthoring helped to put together the spectacular display in collaboration with Portsmouth-based writers.

Greg Klerkx, project co-director, said he was amazed by people’s stories.

One of his favourites was about a resident who once spotted The Monkees’ singer Davy Jones – who died in February last year – standing in his garden having a chat with someone. Someone once found a bottle on Southsea beach with a message in it and managed to track down the person who had thrown it off a ferry when they were a boy 15 years previously.

Greg said: ‘The display looks the way we wanted it to.

‘It’s everybody’s stories and it’s for everyone to see.

‘That’s why we wanted to do it here at Portsmouth Guildhall, so it attracts the attention of visitors that come by.

‘What has amazed me about the project is the variety of the stories being told.’

Kelly Boyland, a teacher at St Paul’s Catholic Primary School, in Paulsgrove, decided to write about her memories of being a teenager.

She got her class to write about a familiar place that means a lot to them.

She said: ‘I am born and bred here. I’ve moved away before but I’ve always been drawn back. I am really impressed by the way the display has been produced.’