Last Friday Storylines had the privilege of visiting Bude, a first for all of us. The visit will be the first of many as we embark on a new and exciting project with the Bude Climate Partnership to capture memories and reflections that explore the heritage, culture and environment of the Bude area.
We met under a beautiful blue sky in Crooklets carpark, with much anticipation for the day ahead. We’d arranged to meet Vicko, otherwise known as Mr. Bude. So set off to the Surf Life Saving Club in search of a man in a kilt. As you can imagine there are not too many men hanging around in kilts, but even without the kilt Vicko was unmissable. It was such a treat to spend time with Vicko, hearing all sorts of wonderful tales about Bude, past and present and learning about its vibrant community.
It turns out it was not just a big day for us, as lady luck would have it, the final stage of a transatlantic cable was being buried on the beach that very same day! The cacophony of noise from the heavy machinery would present a headache to the most able of sound technicians. Thankfully, we were able to use Vickos beach hut to shield some of the noise, with us just outside to keep everyone safe in these strange Covid times.
We also had the pleasure of being warmly welcomed into Bude Sea Pool, gaining some insight from the wonderful employees there of the Sea pools near demise, and impressive rescue by the community. Which now means that the Sea pool is open all year round and is free to use for everyone, relying on donations and a raft of dedicated volunteers.
In the afternoon in our excitement to meet some people from the Repair Café, we found ourselves on an accidental bear hunt. What had looked like a relatively straight forward walk turned into a trapse across the golf-course, through scrubland and barbed wire, woodland and long grasses…. But what better way to get to know a place than through getting lost!
It was well worth the sweat we had worked up. Eilidh’s community spirit and passion for the environment that led her to set up the Repair Café was so inspiring. Providing an invaluable community service and meet-up space, that is purely donation based, and even includes Eilidh’s notorious cakes. We also spoke to Mike, who gives up his free time to come and fix anything electrical that people bring in for him, hearing about the friendships he has formed and what he gets from the experience. We then spoke to John, a regular visitor to the café, who is the proud owner of many items that would normally have ended up in landfill, that are now back-up and fully functioning thanks to the Repair Café.
Needless to say, our first trip to Bude far exceeded our expectations, with such a warm welcome, we were literally tripping over interesting stories and people everywhere, and cannot wait to get back and follow these up. A very exciting start to a very exciting project, which will see us make a series of digital stories that will form the heart of innovative resources. The aim of these resources is to help KS3 children and the wider community think about what’s important to the community, learn about the positive things that are already happening locally and consider how climate change might affect the area.