This is a long story and I’m not going to tell it all now: here’s the main thing –
it’s the story of a town founded 800 years ago that supplied the British Navy, surrounded by water, on the end of the land.
a story in sound about the town of Gosport, once principal supplier of the British Empire’s naval fleet,
a main departure point for the D-Day landings,
the origin of deep sea diving,
home to both a historic and beautiful organ played by G.F. Handel and
a rare electric Compton cinema organ, delicious and multifarious beasts, both.
Marge, 92 worked making bombs when she was 17, in the munitions factory.
Tony voyaged under the North Pole in the first nuclear sub, during the late 1950s.
Sometimes planned, often randomly encountered individuals and places of this incredible location have been a source of eviscerating joy and sadness.
I’m attempting to paint a thickly coloured sound portrait of a town whose history, present and future embody the flux of the late 20th, early 21st century Britain.
It isn’t just a bunch of stories and vox pops: the project assimilates the sounds of the place, now and historically, with music captured in the street and in concert. The incredible sound of some fine local music makers: amateur bands, professional performers and historic recordings.
It is a musical composition built from thousands of audio fragments: captured, generated and borrowed.
The only way you can hear it is by walking in the landscape with an Android handset with the app on it.
The GPS signal locates you and lets you hear the part of the sound in the space you are walking through or sitting in to listen deeply to.
As you walk, you reconstruct the whole from all of the stems I have lovingly compiled over months of walking, recording, interviewing, listening and dreaming about this wonderful town’s strange and uniquely resonant past. And what it’s future might be.
What you will hear is nothing like any recording, broadcast or electronic composition you have ever encountered.
Fifty plus circles in the landscape containing unique miniature broadcasts are interlocked, overlapped, sequentially linked.
You need a GPS-connected handset with noTours software and our project “Written in Water: Portrait of a Town”. We will provide.
Come to the launch… or any time (Gosport Discovery Centre)
You’ll walk inside a sound portrait of the town and its long history –
moving through the landscape
with its own living auditory personality
always changing and shifting around you,
as you navigate the virtual composition.
Contact us for more details or visit