Share Your Story with Tyneside: Your Objects Wanted for People’s Plinth at Farrell Centre

Objects are fascinating because they can tell us a lot about a person, a place, or a time. We all have items that hold personal meaning, but some objects also speak to a collective history, reflecting the experiences, ideas, and events of a community. The Farrell Centre, Newcastle University’s new centre for architecture and cities, believes that gathering these objects together can offer a unique perspective on Tyneside, past and present.

The People’s Plinth

The Farrell Centre has created the People’s Plinth, a public display space in which they will showcase objects owned by people across Tyneside. The Centre is asking the people of Tyneside to dig through their attics, scour their photo albums, and sift through family memorabilia to find objects that will help them understand the city in new and exciting ways.

The Centre’s Director, Owen Hopkins, explains that the People’s Plinth “will capture the public’s imagination and inspire us to think about the city in new, more inclusive, and potentially transformative ways.” The Plinth will host objects that are precious and seemingly unremarkable, made to last and those that were not, and will trace how Tyneside has evolved over time and the people, events, and ideas that have shaped it.

What are they looking for?

The People’s Plinth is looking for a wide range of objects, including photos, newspaper clippings, ticket stubs, furniture, works of art, clothes, books, diaries, letters, toys, models, maps, and even fragments of buildings. The goal is to create a dynamic and ever richer picture of Tyneside and its people by displaying these objects for a period of two months before replacing them with others.

The People’s Plinth is an ongoing project, and the Centre hopes to receive contributions from people across Tyneside for years to come. The Plinth will be located in a shopfront directly adjacent to the Farrell Centre’s entrance on Eldon Place and will be visible to the public 24/7. It is built from aluminium scaffolding poles and Stormboard panels, made from recycled plastic. The Plinth has multiple levels and surfaces, making it possible to accommodate a range of objects – both 3D and 2D – simultaneously.

How can you contribute?

If you have an object that fits the bill, send photos of it and a short paragraph explaining why you think it should be included to [email protected]. Full details are available on the Farrell Centre website:

What is The Farrell Centre?

The Farrell Centre, which opens on April 22nd, is a new public centre for architecture and cities. The Centre is located in a four-storey Victorian building in central Newcastle, which has been transformed in a £4.6 million building project. Its mission is to widen the debate around the crucial roles that architecture and planning play in the contemporary world in innovative, engaging, and challenging ways.

The Centre will combine a public gallery, research hub, and community space, offering a variety of experiences for visitors of all ages. The Centre’s programme will be wide-ranging and inclusive, featuring temporary exhibitions, public talks and debates, workshops and activities for schools, young people, community groups, events for built environment professionals, as well as publications, podcasts, and other digital projects.

The Centre’s inaugural exhibition, More with Less: Reimagining Architecture for a Changing World, offers a new vision for architecture in the face of the climate emergency. The exhibition showcases innovative installations by four UK-based architects and opens on Earth Day, an annual celebration raising awareness of the need to protect Earth’s natural resources for future


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