In the early evening of Friday 25 September, the FutureCoast Youth team (Environmental Science GCSE students from Dorothy Stringer and their tutors, Mr Rob Sandercock and Dr Dan Danahar) came to FutureCoast Brighton HQ (Onca Centre for Arts and Ecology) to learn about a top secret climate mission. The young special agents were met at the door by Agent Wye (Persephone Pearl) and Doctor Agent Watt (Julie Doyle), and were treated to biscuits and tea by Howard the Caterer (Jack Darach).
Agent Wye welcomed the young special agents to FutureCoast Brighton HQ explaining that FutureCoast is a network of grassroots organisations all around the world addressing climate change through positive action and personal agency. Agent Wye went on to explain to the agents that distinctive objects had been appearing in clusters at random locations all around the world. Through FutureCoast’s secret research, they had been able to discover that information from the futures was encoded into the structure of these objects. Agent Wye explained to the enthralled agents that the objects appear because of glitch or tear in the space/ time continuum, and occasionally these objects, which are called chronofacts, pour through in events that are called chronofalls.
Agent Wye explained that the work of FutureCoast is secret because what we have learned from these chronofacts has huge implications for society. She explained that the agents had come to the briefing today because their help was needed to unlock more chronofacts and decode the messages they contain. What they show us is that there are an infinite number of possible futures, and that what we do here and now, today, shapes those futures and determines which become real.
Agent Doctor Watt (Julie Doyle) went on to introduce the science of climate change and got the agents to explain their own understanding – they were all impressively well informed about the science. Through her talk, Agent Doctor Watt became increasingly impassioned about the magnitude of threat climate change poses – with C02 level reaching over 400 ppm and the hottest recorded year on record being 2015. She exclaimed that if we didn’t address this issue there would be irredeemable catastrophe!
Howard the Caterer got very agitated about such scaremongering language and stormed out of HQ. Within minutes Agent Wye received a phone call from another FutureCoast Agent informing us that there had been a chronofall in the area. Amidst the excitement and anticipation, Howard the Caterer fell through the door – he had been hit on the head by a falling chronofact!
Agent Wye asked the agents to read out the encoded number on the chronofact, which released three voicemails from a range of possible futures. Two of the voicemails were from a future Brighton. The first was from a woman who explained that the tide had got too high and people were stranded on the train between Brighton and London. She was going to be put up for the night in a flotel 9a floating hotel). The second voicemail was a conversation between two men who talked about the romantic beachfront of Brighton with its abandoned buildings, of the solar powered hotel they were staying in, and of the expensive cost of cod and chips. The third, from an unidentified place, talked about water powered buses and hoverboards that sync with smartphones and of solar powered houses.
Once the voicemails had been decoded, Agent Wye, Doctor Agent Watt and Howard the Caterer all stepped out of their characters and of the immersive play. They tasked the students to produce their own voicemails in pairs or individually, inspired by their experiences of the FutureCoast event. Many of the students used the FutureCoast Booth to record their voicemails and were very happy to undertake the task and play along with the whole event.
Overall, the students and their tutors were extremely positive about the experience -excellent and fun.
The students and tutors voicemails will be available to listen to in a separate blog.
Blog written by Julie Doyle
Howard the caterer – Jack Darach (Onca)
Agent Wye – Persephone Pearl (Onca)
Agent Dr Watt – Julie Doyle (University of Brighton)
Future Coast Youth agents – Nine GCSE Environmental Science students, aged 14-15 years old, Dorothy Stringer School.
Other agents – Mr Rob Sandercock (Environmental science tutor) and Dr Dan Danahar (Bio-diversity Co-ordinator)