While formal, officially sanctioned social gatherings were banned during lockdown, more localised and creative responses to the restrictions associated with COVID-19 were evident, across the world. From the balcony concerts of Barcelona, to the socially distanced street parties celebrating VE Day in London and the neighbourhood DJ sets taking place in other cities, the everyday, communal and ‘hyper-local’ responses to COVID-19 of people in our urban locations was inspiring. We have seen streets being (re) claimed by neighbourhoods and communities, parks becoming ever more important places for recreation, relaxation and sociability and examples of public squares becoming the sites of extended private cafes to enable social distancing. Our ‘stories from the street’ initiative wants to generate a picture of the sorts of informal or spontaneous festivities or social experiences that have emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic from March-July 2020 in the city of Glasgow and surrounding areas.

We want to know more about: the types of communal social experiences that have been established during the lockdown; who initiated and organised these communal social experiences; what social infrastructures have been used to enable these social experiences to be hosted (e.g. streets, windows, parks); who has been participating in these communal social experiences; whether these temporary communal social experiences will continue to become more permanent features of community life. We want to draw on residents’ intimate knowledge of their local areas, including streets, lanes, small parks, their own houses and gardens. We want people to contribute both textually and in visual form and we will also follow up with those people who want to tell us more about their experiences.

To participate, simply click on the survey link here (https://forms.gle/HfbWAvDZ1SF1wfsQ9). Participation will take no more than 10 minutes of your time

This blog originally appeared on the Festspace webpage.