Group 30

‘Our Proud Past’ is a collaboration between the MSA and The Proud Trust, in which we will “takeover” Archives+ in the Manchester Central Library. Over the 2 weeks, we will be curating a digital exhibition to celebrate the rich history of Manchester’s LGBT+ Centre. We will have the opportunity to collaborate across year groups and with users from the Centre. While the end product of the fortnight will be purely digital, we will also use the work produced in a physical exhibition, taking place in Summer 2021.

Download Final Report

Tim S / Nadir Qazim M

Meet Our Collaborators: The Proud Trust

The Proud Trust is a life saving and life enhancing organisation that helps LGBT+ young people empower themselves, to make a positive change for themselves, and their communities. They do this through youth groups, coordinating national and regional LGBT+ youth work networks, managing the LGBT+ Centre for Manchester, delivering of training, running events and campaigns, undertaking research and creating resources.

Posted 2 Mar 2021 14:43
Meet Our Collaborators: Archives+

Archives+ is an exciting City Centre showcase and repository for archives and family history. Situated in the magnificent Manchester Central Library, this purpose-built centre brings together a partnership of amazing regional and national collections of documents, photographs and films, and helps to satisfy a growing demand for accessible community history and personal heritage. It is easier than ever before for you to find what you’re looking for under one roof!


FACEBOOK: @archivesplus
TWITTER: @archivesplus
Posted 2 Mar 2021 14:44
Meet Our Collaborators: Emily Crompton

Emily Crompton is a senior lecturer at the MSA, leading the Year 1 undergraduate programme and a co-lead for the MArch atelier PRAXXIS. Emily has a strong relationship with the The Proud Trust, from working in collaboration with them for many years.

Over the past five years she has been researching the Manchester LGBT+ Centre’s heritage and design. As an expert advisor on The Proud Trusts Buildings Re-Building Board, Emily has been documenting and researching the demolition and rebuilding of the LBGT+ Centre. Work in which Our Proud Past will become involved in.

Emily is interested in looking at the city in unexpected and unusual ways and is always interested in the other side of the story.
Posted 2 Mar 2021 14:48
Meet The Team: Haoran Jiang

Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Shanghai, China
MArch Year 5
BArch: Yunnan University
Atelier: Urban Spatial Experiment

Interests: Urban regeneration, old building extension and architectural collage.
Hobbies outside of architecture include basketball, reading and traveling

Skills: Rhino, Photoshop, AutoCAD and Sketchup
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:12
Meet The Team: Jacques Lachetta

Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Nottingham, UK
MArch Year 5
BArch: University of Sheffield
Atelier: InfraSpace

Interests: Urban spaces and the future of retail, how the traditional high street will evolve and the impact of architecture upon this.
Hobbies outside of architecture include record collecting, graphic design and cooking.

Skills: Photoshop, InDesign, Social Media Management and Sketchup.
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:14
Meet The Team: Tim Scopes

Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Manchester, UK
MArch Year 5
BArch: Sheffield Hallam University
Atelier: &rchitecture

Interests: Inclusivity within architecture and explorations of gendered spaces and their impact. Specifically in regards to social housing and lived experiences of domesticity.
Hobbies outside of architecture include cooking for friends and family and music events/festivals.

Skills: Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Sketchup and Micro-station.
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:15
Meet The Team: Taiming Si

Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Chengdu, Sichuan
MArch Year 5
BArch: Shanghai Jiaotong University
Atelier: &rchitecture

Interests: Parametric design.
Hobbies outside of architecture include basketball, PC games and the playing the piano.

Skills: Photoshop, Illustrator and Rhino.
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:16
Meet The Team: Nadir Mahmood

Pronouns: He/Him
Location: Manchester, UK
MArch Year 5
BArch: Manchester School of Architecture
Atelier: Praxxis

Interests: I am interested in how design can help facilitate and create a more equal and fair society for those who are marginalised.
Hobbies outside of Architecture include music, cooking and reading.

Skills: Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator, AutoCAD and Sketchup
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:29
Meet The Team: Shuhan Liu

Pronouns: She/Her
Location: Shenyang, China
MArch Year 5
BArch: Shenyang University
Atelier: InfraSpace

Interests: Urban spaces and industrial heritage preservation.
Hobbies outside of architecture include music and reading graphic novels.

Skills: Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and Sketchup.
Posted 2 Mar 2021 15:30
Social Value:
It’s all about the History! Whilst we create this exhibition/zine, we are going to uncover the LGBT+ center's rich history together! We will do this by working as a community, having workshops, building our knowledge, and exhibiting our findings both digitally and physically!
Posted 2 Mar 2021 18:58
You will learn a vast range of skills when you join this group. We would love to hear from you first, what are your strengths and weaknesses? From here, we can help you build on either; digital software skills, communication skills, presentation skills, analysis and/or research skills. We are here to help!
Posted 2 Mar 2021 19:08
Meeting the rest of the team and introducing the project.

Great start to the week with a day of getting to know each other and the project. Was great to hear from each member and their interests with the project, architecture and within their day to day lives.
Was great to have Emily Crompton to come and speak to us all about her involvement with the LBGT+ Centre and its history.

A shame that we cannot all be together at this time but a strong start to the project nonetheless.
Posted 10 May 2021 17:51
Archive Search

The group started its in depth search of the archive today, provided to us by The Proud Trust and Manchester Central Library. To split the task, we assigned each member a set of documents to look through and pull out all the relevant data for the project. This was done using a miro board so everyone had the opportunity to read what each person was finding, and so that it could be organised chronologically. The documents dated back to 1975 where MAGIC (Manchester Gay Information Centre) was first formed, by a group concerned that there was a need for a general information service for gay people in Manchester, which through the years has developed into the LGBT+ centre that we know of today.

Many of the team were shocked by some of their findings, especially regarding the amount of hate crime towards members of the LGBT+ community, and the security measures that were put into place to protect those using the centre. This led the group into a discussion and mind mapping exercise about what we know about queer history as well as the discrimination and issues members of the community experience around the world today.
Posted 11 May 2021 22:09
Youth Group Session

As our team has no direct involvement with the LGBT+ Centre, it was important for us to get input into the project from those who do. One of the main and longest standing youth groups within the centre is called LGYM (Lesbian & Gay Youth Manchester) a group that we decided to get involved. To not overwhelm the youth group, only a few members of our team attended the session.

During the session we got to know each other through an ice breaker known as the ‘name game’, in which everyone introduced themselves, their pro nouns, and answered a set question. Moving on, we shared with the group our work so far and asked how they would like to be involved. The majority of this first session was a conversation about their memories of the centre, as well as their experiences of the virtual meetings. The content from the session will be a vital part of the work within the website and zine that we are producing. As a team we learnt a lot about the more intimate workings of the centre, and how for many, the building is simply there to protect them from the rain, with the members of the groups being the true embodiment of the LGBT+ Centre.

We will be attending the session again on the 18th, where we will explore their wishes for the future of the centre, as well as collecting any content they have produced since the first session.
Posted 11 May 2021 22:09
History Timeline

Now that we had extracted the data from the archives, it was time to collate and organise it into its specific year groups and themes. This will become the main body of the website as well as used throughout the ZINE. To go alongside the text, the team also started to work on some images that will help narrate the story of the LGBT+ Centre, see Draw/Create post for more info!

The medium in which the final image was in was up to the individual, with an emphasis being put on making them bright and eye-catching.
Posted 12 May 2021 15:29
Paper Models

One of the main outputs discussed at the start of the project was for the team to produce a scale model of the old building. Due to having to work digitally for the project, we came up with the task to create a mini model of the buildings. To do so, we needed to create a net for the buildings using plans and elevations taken from the Manchester planning portal.

Before we started on the buildings, we ran a small workshop with the modelling group to understand how they work. Once we had practiced simpler nets, we then started to work on the building models. Using a range of software such as AutoCAD and Sketchup the team started to develop models which should be finished by the end of tomorrow.

Once finished, the models will be uploaded to the website, that means that anyone around the world can build their own mini LGBT+ Centre of the past and future!
Posted 12 May 2021 15:29
Proud Trust Talk

Today we had Sarah Christie, the youth work manager from The Proud Trust come to speak to the team. Her talk focused on giving an insight into the workings and groups within the centre. Helping us gain a better understanding in the reach and how important the centre is to those who use it. As some of the team will be attending youth group sessions, but also just as important in every day life, Sarah spoke to us about the importance of language choice and use of pro-nouns.
For most, their singular and visible gender identity is a privilege. Not everybody has this privilege; those that are referred to with the wrong pronoun can feel disrespected, invalidated, and alienated. You can't always tell what someone's gender pronouns are by looking at them. Knowing and using someone's gender pronouns is a positive way to support the people you interact with.

We hope that this project partly brings awareness to this, and those that are reading this post, we ask that you strive to help make this become normal practice.
Posted 13 May 2021 16:45
Paper Net Models - Finished

The modelling team have finished their paper net models. In the blog post you can see images of what they look like when assembled. The final nets will be uploaded onto the website at the end of the week so that everyone can building their own tiny LBGT+ centre.

The nets will be able to be printed on A4 paper to ensure that most people can print them out using their printers at home.

Posted 14 May 2021 16:34
Yesterday afternoon, 2 out of 3 groups began creating graphics/drawings to go alongside the archived information we previously organised and categorised. Today, we have a selection of beautiful drawings that will be used on our online exhibition page and Zine! Here are a few of the images created. The other group is continuing to work on the net models for the Centre, see that post for more information! Happy weekend and stay tuned!
Posted 14 May 2021 19:56
InDesign Tutorial

Today we have started to produce the pages for the Zine (see post for more details). As the team had varying skills on InDesign, we split into our groups again and had tutorials to teach the basics as well as interesting tips and tricks!
We are all excited to start seeing the Zine coming together and look forward to sharing it soon.
Posted 17 May 2021 19:27
Website Intro

Today we introduced the team to the format of the website, led by Jacques Lachetta. We decided to use a website building company called wordpress, who's features make it adaptable for the style of website you want to build.

The workshop led by Jacques focused on the key principles of uploading and editing web pages. The team will be responsible to uploading all the content that has been produced, into an exciting and captivating website that will share the history of the LGBT+ centre as well as work produced by the youth groups of the centre and members of the team.

As a group we then decided on a visual theme and identity for the site, deciding on fonts and colour schemes. Whilst the zine was designed to create a visual feast for the eyes, with every page different to keep the reader’s attention, the website was planned to be more cohesive, allowing for linking from the exhibition and a coherent style to allow for the information to be easily digested.
Posted 17 May 2021 19:28
Zine Activity

Creating a zine is a key part of our project, allowing us to present a visual history of the LGBT centre in a way that is easy to digest for those reading it. Additionally, we wanted to be able to give something back to The Proud Trust; by creating this Zine design it could potentially be printed and sold at the physical exhibition, helping to raise money for the Proud Trust charity, supporting their continued work with the Manchester LGBT community.

Before we started work on the Zine, we spent time introducing the team to the concept of a zine and showed examples that we liked. After that to get thoughts and ideas rolling we set a research task to collect precedent images of existing zines, so that there was plenty of inspiration to draw from.

After this, the team began to produce the pages for the Zine, combining the historical research with the images into eye catching pages. To split the content up, we are following different decades with each group focusing on different sections. We are looking forward to being able to share this work with everyone as even after the first day there is exciting content being produced.
Posted 17 May 2021 19:28
Youth Group Second Session

We once again met with LGYM, and had a fun and informative session. This weeks focus was on the hopes and wishes the group had for the future, whether this be in their personal life or with the new centre.

The conversation also reflected on the positives and negatives of life online, and their experiences of the virtual youth group. Many commented that they cannot wait to get together again and have the sessions in person, but there was also praise of the online meetings. Sometimes members would not turn up to a meeting in person if they they were having a bad day, while online, they have found it much easier to attend as even if they are having a bad day, being able to attend and not fully commit meant their attendance was more constant.

We would like to thank those that have contributed to our project from the youth group and hope to be able to work with them in the future.
Posted 20 May 2021 07:57
Zine Progress

For the second day working on the Zine, the students started to use some of the content that we managed to get from LGYM based on their memories of the old LGBT centre. Their memories of the centre were brilliant and sat alongside the historical facts, as a way of making the zine about the people who inhabit the buildings, as well as the buildings themselves.

Mini tutorials were carried out today for photoshop. The sessions focused on the basic functions on photoshop alongside simple photo editing techniques; to add colour overlays and stylized effects. In the post you can see some of the pages starting to come together, but we decided to edit the colours as to not give away too much of the content until we are complete!
Posted 20 May 2021 07:58
Zine Progress

The Zine is starting to really come together with multiple pages completed and the remaining pages started. The focus of todays session was on colour theory and use within graphic design work. Its important when layering colours that the focus remains where it needs on the page, and that all text is legible. In mini crits, we talked over the completed pages, making suggestions of improvement.

Through research today one of the team uncovered a monument located in Sackville Gardens, next to the Manchester Gay Village. The monument is called 'The Beacon of Hope' as was built in remembrance for those who have, or have suffered from HIV / AIDs. From further exploration we found that this is the only monument in Great Britain for HIV/AIDs. For this blog post we as a team thought it was important to bring up this topic and raise awareness. If you don't know much about the epidemic that started in the 1980s, here is a link that will educate you on all you need and should know:
Posted 20 May 2021 16:32
Partner Feedback

Today we invited Emily Crompton and Sarah Christie from The Proud Trust to come and view the work we have been producing. We had hoped to be able to show them the work when it was fully finished however due to their prior commitments they could only attend today.

We took the partners through all the work produced and let each member talk about how they have contributed to the project. It was great to get positive feedback from both and has helped set that fire to get the work all completed to the best of our ability.

We would like to thank both Emily and Sarah for their help throughout this project and looking forward to work with them in the future beyond this project.
Posted 20 May 2021 16:46
Zine Final Push

With a feedback meeting planned for today, the team was in full action stations making sure the Zine was as completed as possible. The team split into groups once more taking up specific tasks to ensure the completion of the Zine.

We had one team focusing on the graphics within the Zine. Final adjustments and alterations have been made to pages to ensure that the narrative and aesthetic story throughout is clear.
One group focused on the editing of text, cross referencing with the content curated by the team to ensure that all history was correct and that there was nothing left out.
And finally one team carried on working on the remaining pages of the Zine.

We are as whole incredibly proud and excited to share our work with you and hope that it is enjoyable to read as it has been to create!
Posted 20 May 2021 22:27
Sad News!

Sadly today the team have received the news that the exhibition planned to open over summer has been postponed! Due to the restrictions and difficulty of collating exhibition items the partners have decided they would rather postpone the exhibition than do it not at its best.

The work produced during this week will be used when it comes time for the exhibition, and excitingly many of the team will be in Manchester next year which means everyone can be involved within the physical exhibition!
Posted 21 May 2021 11:57
The Final Zine!

The final zine is complete and available for everyone to see. We are really happy with the work that has been produced and immensely proud of our zine. Everyone has worked well together and learnt a lot over the two weeks.

The zine now lives as a digital PDF file, ready for The Proud Trust to print and sell, but also as a digital zine uploaded to Issuu which features on the website created.

Posted 21 May 2021 12:20
The Final Website is Complete!

A pandemic proof-alternative to the physical exhibition.

Much like the Zine, we wanted the website to be broken down into specific decades/eras to allow for the information to be easily digested.

As a partner to the physical exhibition we were conscious that the Archives+ space wouldn’t allow for all the information we curated to be displayed, so as well as showing what will be in the exhibition we wanted to show other information that might not have otherwise been shown to the public, that we had found during our look through the archives.
The undergraduate team assembled this information into the decade era categories, along with the illustrations that we had created for each era/key point, to go onto the website.
Today the last minute tweaks were made by the groups that conducted the final checks on the zine yesterday!

Posted 21 May 2021 12:25
Quiz Time!

Time to test how much the team has learnt over the two weeks.
As a fun way to end the project, we organised a quiz focusing on the content that is included within the Zine and on the Website. Testing how much everyone has absorbed and as well as some more general knowledge questions focusing around the LGBTQ+ community.

The winner of the quiz was Katie Harrison! Closely followed by Jacques and then Nadir! Was a great way to end what has been a truly enjoyable two weeks!
Posted 21 May 2021 12:30
Student Reflection

LGBT+ history
I have been very interested in the LGBT+ cause for years, but rather from a current activist perspective, my historical knowledge on the struggle and fights of the community that have allowed us to get rights remain sadly limited, especially in the UK. This project taught me a lot about the important role in LGBT+ history of Manchester the past 60 years.

The Proud Trust
I discovered and learned a lot about The Proud Trust, which was a great opportunity for me to get an insight into an LGBT+ charity. Indeed I want to be as active in this cause as I can and this definitely motivated me to volunteer in the near future.

Photoshop (and others)
On top of historical and social knowledge and personal development, I gained technical skills useful for the course. Mainly in Photoshop but also in researching or other softwares, which I greatly lack.

Group work
Even though on Teams (and with a very slow computer) it was useful in my opinion to have a group project, especially after so long working alone. Firstly, the group was well organized and directed, which made everyone rather motivated and productive and the project very enjoyable. Meeting new people also brought varied knowledge and inspiration for everyone as well as personal motivation.
Posted 21 May 2021 12:54
Student Reflections

I’ve had a really fun couple of weeks working with Our Proud Past! The
works been really engaging and interesting and I can’t wait to see our out
comes at the exhibition, especially if people make the model.

What have I learned?
So much about the LGBTQ+ history of Manchester! From the fight for funding and protesting against section 28 to the long running community support and the iterations of the Manchester Gay Centre. I’m excited to go and visit the new centre, understanding the history thats brought it to be what it is today. I also learned what a switchboard is!

What skills have I gained?
How to approach a research and presentation project from start to finish.
I’ve honed my graphics skills too, particularly in InDesign, and I’ve had such a fun time being creative and bold with my colours to create a zine style- its definitely been a highlight for me. I also finally learned how to use flattery properly in SketchUp!
Posted 21 May 2021 12:56
Student Reflection

What I Learnt:
Researching Skills
Group Work
Basic InDesign skills
Zine design
Things about LGBT community and the Proud Trust

What I did:
Researched old newspapers and collected important information
Drew some illustrations in Ipad
Worked in groups
Designed a zine page

Personal Highlights:
Meeting new people
Making nice drawings
Typing something new (e.g. making zine pages)
Posted 21 May 2021 12:58
Student Reflection

What I Learnt:
Documenting and categorizing Skills
Basic InDesign and Illustrator skills
Design of Zine pages
History regarding the LGBTQ Centre and the Proud Trust

What I did:
Create the Crossword Game with representative words
Reading and recording Love Letters wrote by people who left the old centre
Groups sharing and collaboration
Illustration in Zine pages
Rearranging the timeline of the LGBT Centre

Personal Highlights:
Making cool illustrations in Zine
Creating the inspiring words game
Realizing other people’s thoughts in the old centre
Posted 21 May 2021 12:58
Student Reflection

What I Learnt:
How to research and document
Photoshop (image editing) and making illustrations
Introduction to Wordpress
The basics of Indesign
What a Zine is
About the history of the Proud Trust, the LGBTQ community and the importance of Pronouns

What I did:
Researched, read magazines and collect information
Made illustrations
Put elements together to form zine pages
Attended mini workshops
Interacted and communicated with a varied group of people

Personal Highlights:
Reading old magazines
Learning new skills
Making fun art
Meeting new people
Posted 21 May 2021 12:59
Student Reflection

Things I liked about the project:
Everyone was so nice and supportive of each other's work.
The project was well managed and each of us had specific tasks so the team work was much easier despite the fact that it was all handled online.
People were engaged with the tasks and always offered help or more ideas to improve the overall work.

Tasks I did during the project:
Read through text documents and choose suitable information for the zine regarding the history of the gay center.
Synthesizing the information about the history during the 1980s.
Create a word search game.
Posted 21 May 2021 13:23
Student Reflection

It was a great chance to meet and work our fabulous colleages. I learned a lot of working skills such as using mixed-media to design a zine page, flatting a 3d model to get the unfolded 2d.

But the most interesting part was when people at different learning levels are working together and helping each other, which was a relaxing working atmosphere and I really enjoy it!
Posted 21 May 2021 13:57