Littlehampton Field

Nikki Wilson, whose work is currently on display in the Museum's Case 22 Cabinet explains the reason for her interest in recording the history of one of Littlehampton's last untouched spaces:

"Progress was the motto given to Littlehampton on becoming a town in 1853.  And what progress this town has witnessed over the decades where the once abundant countryside has been all but consumed by different housing developments.  

It was while undertaking my Fine Art Degree that I fell in love with a small field adjacent to the Worthing Road, at the back of the houses along Highdown Drive, the road in which I grew up and live in now.  I remember this field from my childhood.  I remember its last corn field.  I remember playing there with my friends.  I remember how vast the school playing field was.  I remember the field being split in two with one half being given to the school while the other half had no special appointment and was left to grow wild.   This space is now only really used by dog walkers and youngsters who hang out behind the bushes.  It is rarely mown with nature trying to reclaim parts of it with aggressive brambles and young oak trees.  Development is imminent and the extension to the Fitzalan link road is due in 2018, which will follow the route of that last corn field. 

I wanted to create a legacy of this space, to remind future generations of what it was like.  I spent months visiting this space with my camera, photographing it in all weathers and from all aspects. Every day I discovered something different to point my camera at and as the weeks went by I found I had developed a very deep connection with this field.

I also collected various objects and some of these are now being exhibited in case 22 in the museum.  Each object invited me to weave a narrative around its existence in this space.  I amassed specimens of nature that reminded both me of both their fragility and strength.

Littlehampton Museum has a wonderful collection of objects that help bring us closer to our local ancestors and environment.  

Through these photographs, I invite you to see this abandoned field in a new light, a space of beauty and grace that is crying out for people to really notice it before it is lost forever under yet more houses and concrete."

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