We adore Calke Abbey and spent a lot of time there during our Stories Out Of Place project, researching the ways people create and leave stories and traces of their journeys.
Calke, like many places, has hidden secrets and precious things that many visitors never see. One of the many wonderful things about the grounds at Calke is that the ponds play home to native white-clawed crayfish which are an endangered species. These small creatures hide away and most people will not know that are there.
As part of an event to celebrate the watery wildlife at Calke, Katy and I set up a space for the crayfish - who were being moved temporarily whilst their ponds had some work carried out on them. We wanted to set up a place which would draw attention to the crayfish and the need to care for them; a space where people could come and chat about their experiences at Calke. Of course the crayfish, being near a grand house, had to move into a room where they could have a grand Edwardian style tea-party...
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