Content Creation

Coniston Coppermines, Cumbria

We led on the interpretive planning and content creation, as well as inputting into the design process, to create a series of panels and trails to interpret the historic copper-mining landscape.

Interpretive planning

We wrote the interpretation plan which laid out in detail the interpretive theme, aims and objectives, stories, locations of key features and media to be used. This was submitted as part of a successful Heritage Fund grant application.

Content creation and interpretive writing 

We then worked with Minerva Heritage and The Way Design to develop the interpretation plan into deliverable concepts and to create a content plan. The plan set out the locations, mapped the stories to these places and agreed the media to be used.

We developed a tone of voice for all outputs, which included an active writing style that evoked the valley as a place full of people and the sounds of industry.

The interpretation comprised a landmark welcome to the valley, an interpretive welcome hub of four panels, an in-depth display of six panels about mine engineering, six standalone panels at key locations and a printed self-guided leaflet trail. Together, these formed a landscape-wide interpretive trail around Coppermines Valley that started at Coniston village and included Coniston Water.

Visitor experience

We also wanted to create an experience that transported visitors from the tranquil landscape of today to a busy, noisy industrial site. For the landmark welcome to the valley, located where the landscape is revealed after a walk from Coniston village, we decided to use local slate to evoke the mining heritage of the valley in 20 words.

Each panel has an attention-seeking headline, an introductory sentence to the topic in the past tense, then text that interprets the feature. When this is about a specific human story that happened at the location of the panel, it  is told in the present tense to give a sense of immediacy.

“I used to work in the heart of the Lake District as an interpreter and archaeologist from 1986 to 1991, so I was pleased to reunite my acquaintances with the region. The atmosphere of the landscape intertwined with the deep histories to its fells and valleys always captured my imagination then, and I hope I can prompt the same connections with today’s visitors who often miss this internationally important copper mining heritage and the dramatic remains that tell its many stories.” Bill Bevan

Client: Lake District National Park Authority
Subcontracted to: Minerva Heritage
Duration: October 2014 – May 2018

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