79 Journeys ...
a proposal for a project
based on a bus journey through Liverpool
in images, words and music
by Andrew Sherlock & Brian Machin
'Standing outside the Adelphi in the rain with two shopping bags. The 79 rounds the corner to take me home to Wavertree, both friend and irregular villain, it is the most welcome sight I have ever seen'. (Andrew Sherlock 1980)
The 79 bus from Paradise Street to Netherley, four times an hour, through Edge Hill, Wavertree, Childwall, and Belle Vale. A cross section of Liverpool you couldn't invent. Bus routes have a habit of meandering but the 79 travels pretty much a straight line and back again from Netherley to Paradise.
We will get on and off the bus at regular intervals with people to follow their favourite journey. It might be the schoolchild's journey to the sweet shop or the start of a holiday; it might be the pensioner's eleven steps upstairs to bed. Or children will ask their grandparents what their favourite journey is and then take them on it.
'One of the pleasantest things in life is to go on a journey...' (William Hazlitt)
We will devise an introduction for schools and 79 travellers to get them started. The result will be a patchwork of journeys recorded in a variety of ways and different media. Some will be filmed, others photographed, described in prose or poetry, drawn or painted and set to a newly commissioned piece of music devised and played by people from the area and showcased at a local venue like the old Abbey Cinema or Woolton Picture House.
The project will also collect stories from residents along the bus route - the inhabitants of Olive Mount Towers before the demolition of the blocks, the historians of the Wavertree Local History Society, the call centre workers of the Technology Park or the cleaners at Morrisons in Belie Vale. We will then choose 79 snippets of story have them printed and framed, then put in and on public buildings lining the route.
The result is to provide a diverse and vibrant snapshot of a city going about its business - part of the symphony of a city.
'The faraway faces stare back at me as I pull up next to the 79 on Picton Road, all with places to be. I wonder where they are going'. (Andrew Sherlock 2003)
ASProductions, 3 Olive Grove, Liverpool L15 8LU
Email or phone Andrew Sherlock (0796 709 1612) or Brian Machin (0775 480 6269).