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Suffolk businesses in crowdfunding bid to provide story-telling trail of Martlesham’s history

PUBLISHED: 18:13 19 May 2017 | UPDATED: 19:35 19 May 2017

The Control Tower at Martlesham Heath. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

The Control Tower at Martlesham Heath. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Spitfires are at the centre of plans for a `walking trail’ set to take over Martlesham Heath this summer.

John Royle of Chronicle Digital Storytelling at Ipswich Waterfront. Picture: CONTRIBUTED John Royle of Chronicle Digital Storytelling at Ipswich Waterfront. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Two Suffolk businesses are linking up to help celebrate the history of flying at Martlesham this year.

Chronicle Digital Storytelling and Pop My Mind are a launching collaborative project to support a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for a “Trail of Stories” for the Martlesham Heath Centenary Celebrations (MH100) in July.

A model Spitfire prototype, undecorated, of the type proposed for the Martlesham Heath celebrations trail this summer. Picture: JOHN ROYLE A model Spitfire prototype, undecorated, of the type proposed for the Martlesham Heath celebrations trail this summer. Picture: JOHN ROYLE

The project will see Pop My Mind artists creating original artworks that will be used as rewards for donors to a crowdfunding campaign.

Spitfire arwork by Ipswich artist Michelle Bowden, part of the Pop My Mind art collective. Picture: MICHELLE BOWDEN Spitfire arwork by Ipswich artist Michelle Bowden, part of the Pop My Mind art collective. Picture: MICHELLE BOWDEN

Funds raised from the crowdfunding campaign will be used to support the MH100 celebrations this summer and to help create a lasting legacy.

Chronicle plans to create a trail of stories that capture and embed reminiscences about the area ,with decorated models of Spitfires.

The Spitfire models would be used to mark stopping points along the trail.

The stories will be available via a digital walking trail using Chronicle’s smartphone app.

It is hoped the project will encourage the local community to enjoy stories, reminisce and share their own personal memories of the area with each other and the public.

Martlesham Heath was a base for the Royal Flying Corp during the First World War, and then became a base for aeronautical research and test flights.

The first parachutes were developed here.

During the Second World War it became and important airfield, with most of the Battle of Britain No 11 group flying from here, including wartime aces such as Douglas Bader, and a wide range of British and American fighter planes.

The RAF closed the base in 1963 and the last flight took place in 1979.

It’s history is being celebrated this year.

John Royle, founder of Chronicle said: “We are very excited about working with Pop My Mind on this creative project and the opportunity to help raise funds for us to deliver the trail. The project provides a great example of local start-ups helping each other local and we are very much looking forward to working with Oliver and his creative team.”

Oliver Squirrell, founder of Pop My Mind said: “This project presents a wonderful opportunity for our artists to engage with an innovative project based upon the history of Martlesham Heath. We look forward to bringing our collective talents to bear to create some impactful artworks that can help raise funds for this worthy cause.”

A link to the crowdfunding page is available here:

Chronicle is a local Suffolk based technology start-up that is focused upon the use of personal stories to help define and celebrate the culture of places. Stories are captured from local people in the form of short 2-3 minute digital videos. Stories are then shared via walking trails, websites and social media.

The aim is to encourage tourism, support healthy communities and preserve heritage. An important additional benefit is in reducing social isolation and loneliness, particularly of older people.

Pop My Mind is local start-up offering access to a 500 strong, handpicked international collective of artists. Artists are challenged to produce) Chronicle is based at Innovation Martlesham in Adastral Park. For

more information on Chronicle activity visit their website:

https://www.chroniclestories.co.uk/

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