Weston writer creates high street tale for town

Rebecca Tantony enjoying Weston town centre.

Rebecca Tantony enjoying Weston town centre. - Credit: Heidi Burton ABIPP

A new podcast and e-book featuring stories from Weston writer and poet, Rebecca Tantony, has been released as part of Weston's Heritage Action Zone scheme this month.  

The Women of Number 11 is one of seven stories commissioned for Historic England’s High Street Tales, a new weekly podcast series and e-book inspired by local high streets. 

Rebecca, along with storytellers across the UK, captures the ‘everyday magic of the high street’ while working with outstanding people in the community to create a set of short stories about today’s high street.  

Each tale has been narrated for a podcast series which will be released over the coming weeks and the first episode launched on February 10. It is available to download at Historic England’s website as well as on major podcast platforms. 

Weston High Street, just before the first lockdown.

Weston High Street, just before the first lockdown. - Credit: Mark Atherton

In The Women of Number 11, writer and poet Rebecca Tantony used online conversations and socially-distanced conversations, as well as the sights and sounds of Weston, to conjure the lives of women across the ages. 

Rebecca said: “'The Women of Number 11 aims to use space, time and interconnectivity to highlight the value of the past and the possible futures of our high streets and the people who fill them.” 

North Somerset Council heritage arts and culture chairman, John Crockford-Hawley, said these stories 'reflect the importance of place to individuals' and highlight the 'vital role of the high street in people’s everyday lives'.  

He said: “This future planned work offers a great opportunity to uncover Weston’s historic gems, connect with local people and showcase their passions around the place they call home.” 

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High Street Tales is the first project in a £7.4million cultural programme led by Historic England, in partnership with Arts Council England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund. 

The programme of cultural activities is part of the £95million High Streets Heritage Action Zone scheme, which is currently working to breathe new life into 68 English high streets, including 10 locations in the South West.

The cultural programme features new digital and physical artworks inspired by the nation’s high streets and aims to make them more attractive and vibrant places for people to spend time, work and live. 

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