The feeling of a place: a psychogeographic exploration in Walworth

Social Life carried out an independent research project over the spring and early summer in 2017 to understand the relationship between places and the way they make us feel.

Our focus has been on five different but connected places near Elephant and Castle in Southwark. Our office sits at the centre of these, in a corner of Elephant & Castle that is calm and stable, in comparison to the upheaval of construction in other parts of the area. These five sites have acted as connector points for a walk we have facilitated five times with residents and visitors. At each stop we asked the participants a series of questions to capture data on how they felt about each place. We also carried out site-specific street interviews with passers-by at the same locations. In total we gathered data from 101 people, half through walks and half through one-on-one street interviews.

The results of the research was made available in a number of ways: we wrote a short report and organised a local exhibition at the Newington Estate Community Hall. This project also formed part of The Unusual Suspects, a festival about social change organised by the Social Innovation Exchange.

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