Chinatown is a special part of London. We need YOUR support to help secure and celebrate its cultural heritage and display its Chinese and East & South East Asian (ESEA) history for the first time.
There are 11 heritage plaques in Chinatown that detail fascinating snippets of history but not one of them mentions the area's cultural connection to the Chinese and ESEA diaspora. We want to change this!
The diaspora history of Chinatown is not well documented. We have made steps to change this and your support would allow intangible food heritage to be documented, formally archived and celebrated.
What we'll deliver:
- Design & install two large interpretation boards in Gerrard street
- Train 8 History Champion walking tour guides for our walking tour programme
- Train and engage 12 volunteers to gather food heritage stories from businesses with heritage at risk
- Research and develop a Chinatown food heritage trail documenting and celebrating the intangible food cultural heritage
Why it's a great idea:
This project will:
- ensure that East Asian diaspora history is publicly acknowledged in Chinatown for the first time. Yes! The first time!
- celebrate cultures and heritage experiences in London's Chinatown, a much loved part of London
- build and improve understanding of London Chinatown and the people who shape and are shaped by the area
- improve the ways for tourists, visitors and Londoners (all essential visitors for the local businesses) to enjoy this special area
- show support and solidarity for the area, the people who run businesses there and who rely on it as a place for cultural connection after anti-Chinese sentiment and increased hate crime towards British East Asian people
- build skills and experience in our teams of dedicated volunteers
- improve the understanding of intangible food heritage in an iconic part of the capital
* We can only make these fantastic benefits happen with your support. Please pledge and help us make this project happen. *
Steps to get it done:
- Write the interpretation board copy in English and Chinese
- Design the interpretation board
- Install the interpretation board on Gerrard street
- Recruit 8 History Champion walking tour guides
- Train 8 History Champion walking tour guides
- Promote upcoming walking tours dates
- Train 12 volunteers to gather heritage from local businesses with heritage at risk
- Gather heritage from local businesses with heritage at risk
- Transcribe and translate heritage interviews
- Research and develop a Chinatown Food Heritage Trail through the material collected by volunteers
- Unveil our Chinatown Food Heritage Trail to the public
- Complete first phase marketing plans for all three public elements of the project
- Archive heritage footage and pictures
In 2018, China Exchange began a project "A summer celebration of Chinatown heritage", supported by Chinatown London (Shaftesbury plc). The project included training tour guides for summer walking tours and developing two history interpretation boards. Planning permission took over a year to secure and subsequently the cost of mounting the boards has risen. We need more guides since our original trained cohort has reduced. And we want to continue our work in documenting Chinatown's history. Supporting this campaign will make positive things happen for Chinatown. Please help in any way that you can.