From Pink Floyd to Coldplay - project on UEA gig history scoops international award
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A project celebrating a Norwich university’s unique gig history, which has connected alumni across the world, has won an international award.
The University of East Anglia’s (UEA) gig history project has received the Council for Advancement and Support of Education Europe’s silver Circle of Excellence award for its engagement with former students.
The project was launched in 2016, marking 40 years to the day that UEA cancelled the first date of the Sex Pistols Anarchy in the UK tour on safety grounds. Other venues later followed suit.
The team hoped to turn a negative into a positive and celebrate the unique gig history at UEA from 1963, when it was built. I has hosted countless well-known names in that time.
An archive of listings, posters and photos, safely stored by Gavon Hudson, part of UEA’s student union entertainment team, was shared with the public, sparking an outpouring of unique memorabilia, photos and memories from gig-goers over the last 50 years.
Mr Hudson had also compiled a list of performers, dates and princes in tribute to colleague Nick Rayns, who was credited with building the university’s strong reputation for music, and who died in 2013. The university’s LCR venue has since been named in his honour.
Professor David Richardson, the university’s vice-chancellor, said: “We are delighted to have received recognition on this scale and it is testament to the hard work of the team.
“UEA gigs have always been open to the public and the concerts form an important part of the wider cultural contribution the university makes to the city of Norwich and region.”
Among others, contributions to the project came from bloggers and writers at publications including NME, Electric Sound, Huffington Post and Outline Magazine.
The Circle of Excellence awards honour outstanding work in relationships with alumni, communications, fundraising and marketing.
Ruth Selwyn-Crome, contect manager from UEA’s alumni conferences and events team, said: “I’m so pleased the project has been recognised in this way. What started as a brave gesture and celebration has evolved into an ongoing collection which I hope will become a useable new archive for students, gig-goers and music lovers alike.”