Children's Corner, Poole Park courtesy of Andrew Hawkes

Poole Park Voices from the Past

Children have been visiting Poole Park for over 130 years; for today’s young visitors the Poole Park Life ‘Voices from the Past’ project brings to life imagined experiences of children who played here long ago.

Voices from the Past is a series of nine short audio stories, each from a different moment in the Park’s history, each linked to a different location in the Park, and each told from a different child’s point of view.

Listen in the park or at home

Look out for the QR codes printed on the new interpretation panels, and listen to the stories as your explore the park! Or access them all at home here:

Episode 1

Welcome to the Park!

It’s 1890, and young Ava Grant, having reached the park entrance, tells of her wonder and excitement at her first ever visit to a brand-new Poole Park.

Episode 2

The Gardener’s Boy

It’s 1892. In the Plant Collector’s Garden a daydreamy young gardener’s apprentice tells of the wondrous plants from far off lands… and narrowly avoids the wrath of the grumpy head gardener.

Episode 3

The Flying Boats

It’s 1942. Ten year old Billy Abbott and his younger brother Charlie are at the War Memorial; Billy tell of his wartime experiences as he watches a Flying Boat coming in to land in Poole Harbour.

Charlie Abbott is played by Joshua Hope, and Billy Abbott by Archie Evans

Episode 4

War is Over

It’s 1919. Isabelle Deane attends the celebration event for children at the War Memorial to mark the end of the the First World War.

Episode 5

Boating on the Lake

It’s 1910 at the landing stage at Poole Park Lake. Edie Bassett tells how her family enjoy taking a ride on one of Arthur Shutler’s boats as a very special birthday treat for her younger sister Annie.

Episode 6

The Big Race

It’s 1893; Poole Park now has a Cycle Track. Inspired by the Banten Brothers, Alfie Grant tells of his determination to win a bike race.

Episode 7

The Chilean Guava

Spring 1892 in the Quiet Garden. Inspired by Marianne North’s botanical art and adventures, young Rosa Lamb sketches the wonderfully scented plant that is Queen Victoria’s favourite and enjoys this moment of tranquillity and escape from her harsh life.

Episode 8

The Steam Train

It’s 1891 and Matthew Kirk is at the Sluice Gate. He waves at a passing steam train and marvels how all this was once part of Poole Harbour, but oh, the Poole Park Pong!

Episode 9

The Swimming Lesson

It’s 1957, the first day of the school summer holidays and it’s baking hot. A joyful Margie Abbott tells of her excitement to leap into the freezing cold waters of Poole Park swimming pool.
All episodes written by Sophie Kirtley · Recorded at Active Music Studio, Poole
Casting and coaching by Ally Cox of Stagewise, Poole · Produced and Directed by Imagemakers Design & Consulting

Voices from the Past is part of the Park’s new heritage interpretation scheme funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund through the Poole Park Life project.