An Office Job

Tue, September 17, 2019 by Albert

We’re delighted to welcome Louise Cross to our team at Settle Stories. Louise was the sucessfull applicant for our Event Manager Internship. We wanted to develop this opportunity for a young person to work in our ambitious team in the brilliant Yorkshire Dales area. The post was made possible thanks to funding from Great Place Lakes & Dales. Louise will be writing a few blogs for us during her time here to share her experiences and here’s her first.

It’s been just over a month I have been working at Settle Stories and the time has flown by. Having worked mainly as a student and freelance until now I was a little apprehensive about how I would fall into the 9 to 5 office work rhythm. However, walking into the Joinery on the first day, to this large room with synthetic grass bringing a bit of nature into the space offered a hint at what working in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales was going to be like.

It’s week two and I’m helping out at Settle Stories’ The Conference of the Birds retreat. I’m running a few minutes late as I am being held up in a traffic jam of stubborn cows who seem bemused at the presence of my car coming down the tiny track through their field. Waiting patiently seems to have no effect so I edge closer and closer with my car until they finally give in and saunter away.

The retreat is at Lower Winskill farm, owned by the farmer Tom Lord. Tom is a warm man who has also been a participant in the upcoming Life in our Hands exhibition by artist Shantamani M who has been collecting stories from Settle locals whilst casting their hands in plaster. The farm is absolutely beautiful, and when I get a chance I walk a little further out to the calming view.

People who are arriving for the retreat seem flustered by their journey, some having just come from work, and many having a similar story of their encounters with stubborn cows on the way down. But as the weekend progresses, I witness the calm set in. No one is unmoved by the tranquility of their location and they are invited to take it all in during their daily meditative silence.

Stubbern cows on the road

But there’s no rest for the wicked and between sessions I find Sita sitting on a rock in the middle of a field making work phone calls to make sure everything is in place for one of Settle Stories’ Lazy Sunday Afternoon film screenings. This farm has become our office with a view over this long weekend.

On a day off, I grab the opportunity to visit some of the local independent shops and grab a photo op by the Settle-Carlisle Viaduct.

It’s Saturday the 14th of September and today Settle Stories is on Turbo charge. Sita is at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park collecting stories for our upcoming festival next year, Yorkshire Festival of Stories. Charles and Jayne are at Saltaire festival running camera related activities for little ones, linked to the Tom Faulkner collection, and I am in the Joinery with artist Shantamani M and trusty trustee Simon setting up for the Life in our Hands Exhibit. The work ethos at Settle Stories is everyone on the team gets stuck in with everything. This means that we have all been involved, with the help of some volunteers, to do some envelope stuffing to get brochures for the new season sent out in time. This weekend I’m getting stuck into painting boards white in preparation for the exhibit. Other duties have included transporting kit around in my trusty steed, Vivienne – my Toyota Yaris Verso, who has proved to be incredibly useful this last month. Apparently there is no such thing as a normal day in the office.

The team at Settle Stories would like to say a huge thank you to Louise for throwing her self in.

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