I found this submission interesting for two reasons;
1 – It being a critique of our project from a local Wednesbury native.
Yes, this is not a one night stand story, but the woman who wrote it is using her submission as criticism for the project and claims that it’s tainting a positive memory she had of the alley/bridge area with her husband.
2 – Her story revolved around a more innocent “first kiss” in the “Shag Alley”.
Though it was not a one night stand, this story still offers some significance to this project and shows that the Hydes Road alley way had a romantic affect on a couple, even without the sexual experience. This for me, is just as interesting as a one night stand and the fact the lovers are still together, creates a poignant contrast to the other stories submitted so far.
Are we giving Wednesbury a bad name?
I hope not, however, like most young people I once developed hostilities towards my home town and resented the ‘lost in time’ characteristics that Wednesbury has recently become known for. As with the majority of teenagers, I wanted something more progressive and exotic. For me, the towns historic accomplishments were trivial and ambitiously reductive.
But “alas”, like every person has to do eventually, I grew up and took a few steps down from my ivory tower (not entirely though). I began to appreciate Wednesbury and the Black Country, not just for its history, but in the realisation that whether I want to admit it or not, a large part of who I am is a result of this place. If I ever wish to see my own value, or at least come to terms with the person I am, I have to consider the place I was nurtured.
I am proud of where I come from in the same way I am proud of my family, and like my loved ones, the last thing I would want to do is give them a bad name.
This project is about honestly discovering facets of Wednesbury I never knew and uncovering the more profound aspects that lurk within these stories. Aspects that are much more than the one night stand stigma reduces them to.
To the woman who wrote this message – I am sorry if these stories have tainted you and your husband’s memories, but you have to realise that we all have memories that are special to us in different ways. These stories are not just about sex, they have often been indirect expressions of people coming to terms with issues about themselves.
The earth is around 4.5 billion years old, who knows what sinister things have happened in places that are special to us. As long as your experience in that place was important to you, that’s all that really matters, right?