A MASSIVE Request for Photographs

Dear friends, a couple of years ago, we celebrated twenty years since our inaugural event. This year marks twenty years since our first big project – M.A.S.S.I.V.E. which was devised to celebrate the Millennium!

M.A.S.S.I.V.E. stood for ‘Millennium Arts Supporting Society Involving Velvet Elephants’ and aimed to make people smile. Funded by the Millennium Commission through a scheme called ‘Peak Potential’, we worked with local artists and over a thousand volunteers and children in local schools to make a patchwork quilt – each piece representing their ideas about what made them happy, much like the rocks we see today lining Broad Walk. The quilt then covered a giant elephant puppet made by more volunteers.

Via a stall in the Springs Shopping Centre, members of the public were encouraged to write down on ribbons what made them happy and their wishes for the future.

These were then attached to the elephant and were eventually made into ‘The Little Book of M.A.S.S.I.V.E. Wishes’, copies of which are still available!

Reading them now provides a snapshot of the time – David Beckham, Pokemon, Ronan Keating, the safe return of Sarah Payne – but others are of timeless themes… I wish… “I was on holiday”, “for a cure for cancer”, “the weather would improve”, “…to have lots of sex”, “to behave more frequently”.

We hope to mark the project later in the summer but we find ourselves short on photographs. Tracking down the negatives of the then dominantly pre-digital world, after a number of house moves, has proven beyond us.

So we are holding out hope that those of you who were involved in the project may have a photograph somewhere. Perhaps recording the making of the patches, the quilt or the elephant – some of the workshops were part of the Buxton Festival Fringe.

Or perhaps you wrote a wish or saw it in the Buxton Carnival parade dancing along to the Buxton Samba Band.

If you have the time and inclination, please could you have a look through your photos of the summer of 2000? Whether they’re in albums or still remain in the Sunasnaps packets, stashed in a box somewhere. If you find any, please could you scan them in and send them to us? (or let us borrow them to do so). Email It would be most appreciated.

We’d also like to hear any memories of the project. Do you recall endlessly sewing quilt patches? Did you make one at school? Did you meet anyone through working on the project that you’re still friends with? Can you remember what you wished for? Did it come true?

Thank you in advance.

Find out more and see the pictures we do have on the project page here.

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