‘Full Immersion’ Concept Activity

Preservation and progress: does preservation and conservation hinder progress in Kendal?

  • Preservation: to keep alive or in existence, keep safe, maintain.
  • Conservation: preventing decay/loss, protection, restoration.
  • Tradition in Kendal – markets even though we have supermarkets, ‘The Chocolate Shop’, traditional pubs, Westmorland shopping centre used to be houses and the previous roofing structure still exists, traditional housing, ‘Strawberry Fields’ renovation, failed K-Village, Serpentine Woods.
  • Primary source – photography, visiting places, seeing reactions, personal experiences.
  • Kendal hasn’t been hindered by the preservation of some sites, rather, Kendal is trying to progress on other sites, such as K-Village, but has failed in doing so because it’s town’s folk haven’t progressed with it. People are happy to travel to Preston or Manchester if they want city shops, and they return to Ambleside or Bowness for traditional, independent shops, whereas Kendal is stuck in between trying to be both progressed and traditional, and isn’t doing either very well. So, preservation of tradition isn’t hindering progression, progression is just unsuccessful for other reasons.
  • If I was to progress with this concept, I would try to create a room design in the form of a painting that reflects Kendal trying to progress but failing to do so. I imagine this to be a room half developed, half traditional.
  • I would also look further into Kendal progressing the wrong areas, such as Strawberry Fields. I would look at updating pre-existing builds that aren’t preserved, and find out if locals would rather this than new builds destroying tradition (Strawberry Fields). I imagine a selection of architectural drawings showing what Strawberry Fields used to be, and what it is now, and what run-down builds look like, and what they could look like if they were renovated in a similar state as the Strawberry Fields builds. I would want to ask a question regarding where Kendal’s locals wish the town to go – to remain traditional, or to progress.
  • My research method of physically visiting the places and taking photographs stimulated the most ideas – actually seeing the building work happen, seeing it destroy a tradition.
  • Doing interviews in these areas would have been largely beneficial in finding out new information before turning to secondary research. I could have asked the builders on Strawberry Fields what they thought, whether they would rather be renovating existing builds rather than consuming more space with more housing. A questionnaire would have increased the efficiency of my primary research also as this would have provided personal responses from other people. From a previous activity, I know that personal responses stand for the better concepts.

Additional concept ideas from activity:

  • Idea of tradition
  • Childhood/adulthood
  • What to do with empty buildings