Press release: Podcast exploring relationship with the sea to be broadcast

Natural England

May 16
12:08 2024

Connecting Shores, an eight-part audio documentary series exploring young people of colours relationship to the sea and coastal environments, will be aired on BBC Radio Devon and BBC Radio Cornwall at 8.35pm on Friday evenings, starting 24 May.

Commissioned and funded by Natural England, the series has been created by Exeter-born dual-heritage sound artist Somatic. The innovative project provides a platform for a set of voices often overlooked in marine spaces.

The project is part of Natural Englands Connecting People with Nature programme, which aims to tackle barriers of access to nature. It is hoped that the series will encourage more young people to engage with coastal areas, as well as to support and inform the marine sector to be more inclusive in their decision-making processes.

Podcasts centred on eight themes

Recordings from interviews with eight young people of colour in Plymouth have been woven together into eight 15-minute episodes, each centred around a different theme. These have been underscored with a soundscape built from coastal field recordings and original sound design.

The audio documentary covers a range of themes, including shaping of identity, early coastal memories, cultural, heritage and water stories, using the coast as a space of health and well-being, the perceived future of coastal spaces, barriers to access, migration and how seashores here connect us to the rest of the world.

Project lead for Natural England, Mel Smith said:

There is a well-documented lack of diversity and representation of people of colour within the marine and wider environmental sector. It is vital that we find new and creative ways to listen to and collaborate with a wider range of voices to tackle barriers of access to nature, address inequalities, and to build partnerships to protect and restore the natural world upon which we all depend.

Partnering with Somatic on this project has been really informative. It has enabled us to amplify the voices of people, which may not be traditionally heard within the marine environment, and to explore how the arts can be used to engage communities in nature recovery.

Somatic, (whose real name is Somin Griffin-Dave) added:

Its been a privilege to be asked to create an innovative series such as this that, through the lens of eight participants, highlights some commonalities and differences in the way that we all interact with coastal and marine spaces.

This project connects Britains history of sea-based migration with climate change, brings into focus a variety of cultural and heritage stories that the people who inhabit our coastlines hold and creates a resource to support more young people of colour engaging with coastal spaces that I believe are so valuable to our survival as citizens of Earth.

The episodes are due to be broadcast on Friday evenings over eight consecutive weeks, beginning Friday 24May and ending Friday 12July on BBC Radio Devon and BBC Radio Cornwall. This will be followed by release on BBC Sounds.

Tofind out more about Somatic and this project visit www.s

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