Boys on the Plaque

Fabrica, in partnership with Strike A Light and Brighton & Hove Library Services, received funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for The Boys on the Plaque project, running from 2015 - 2017. Awarded through HLF’s First World War: Then and Now programme, the project highlighted a recently uncovered First World War memorial plaque situated in the former Holy Trinity Church which houses Fabrica.

2017 was the bicentennial of the Fabrica building that was built in 1817, it was a fitting time to honour and celebrate the history of the building and its continuing presence as a place of contemplation and community in Brighton & Hove.

The Fabrica team had been incredibly curious over time to uncover one of the best-kept secrets of the building from before it had become the arts centre that it is today.

The project's main aims where connecting with the community, as many of the men on the plaque had been local tradesmen and businessmen, and connect with locals through learning something new about our history.

This was achieved through a leading team of volunteers who worked with Brighton and Hove city libraries and Strike a Light to have access to online resources and national archives and researched the lives of each of the men on the plaque.

Their research was then used for a number of different events and activities which involved young people and the older audience, such as the graffiti workshop led by Tim Gouldin or the 'Heritage Open Days' and the 'Conversation Cafes' organised in collaboration with the University of the Third Age, as well as the Walking Tours with Dr Geoffrey Mead. The common goal of the project was to consider legacy, memorials, and identity through contemporary visual practice.

Towards the end of the project, a publication was produced compiling all the research found at Fabrica. This is also housed in the local library, in the hopes that it can add to the history of the community.

The entire process can be found at The Boys on the Plaque blog

As part of this project:

  • 140 volunteers took part
  • 12 Conversation Cafes were held
  • 4 graffiti workshops took place
  • 4 walking tours led by a local historian happened
  • 3000 postcards were distributed around Brighton
  • 1 book was published
Boys on the plaque

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