Chesterfield: Project seeks memorabilia from town's pop scene

Pop fans are being asked to trawl their cupboards, drawers and memories for items relating to a town's music scene.

Project Reverb aims to collect images, ephemera and oral history recordings from people in Chesterfield.

Fanzines, flyers, badges, gig tickets and even carrier bags from record shops are among the items being sought.

Co-ordinator John Hall said: "It's not necessarily about the big names. We're looking at homegrown stuff, like local scenes."

Mr Hall, 64, who was born in the Derbyshire town but moved away in the late 1980s, said: "Chesterfield is lucky in that it's always had strong independent record scenes since the 1960s.

"We're after the stuff in the back of people's drawers: flyers, badges, handbills, posters and so forth."

Autographs, photos and locally produced records and tapes are also wanted.

Mr Hall said Chesterfield hosted concerts from the 1960s by "giants of prog" including King Crimson, Jethro Tull, Family and Roy Harper.

Pulp on stage
Pulp are among the bands to have played Chesterfield, but project organisers are just as interested in lesser-known names

Later, Pulp - from nearby Sheffield - were regular visitors, while bands including The Specials, Simple Minds and The Pretenders played town venue Fusion.

Mr Hall was a particular fan of local act The Bland, who ran a night called Gotham City at the venue.

"They were hilarious, anarchic, messy and wonderful," he said.

Mr Hall said the town's record shops had been key to its music scene, citing past shops such as Connection Records, Hudsons and Planet X, as well current outlets Tallbird and Vanishing Point.

People are being asked to take items along to the Pavements Shopping Centre on between 11:00 and 15:00 BST on 8 October for an event, held in conjunction with Chesterfield Museum.

They will be able to reminisce and chat to the project team, and take part in activities.

It is hoped that the memorabilia will be photographed, and the ultimate aim is to stage an exhibition, drawing on memories of the local pop scene to inspire works of art, photography, sound and film.

"There's a story about the town that needs to be told. We want to remind people how important these scenes are," said Mr Hall.

Kate Sarvent, Chesterfield Borough Council's Labour cabinet member for town centres and visitor economy, said: "We're really excited to be working with John Hall on this project.

"Our town has a rich cultural history with a host of huge names performing over the years. I hope lots of you will take part in this project and help ensure that your memories can live on for years to come."

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