Friday, 19 October 2012

Connect 2 - Everton Park and the Mersey

ENGAGE was out again yesterday (18th October 2012) attending and documenting the launch of the new Connect 2 route between Everton Park and the Mersey.  Although a bit windy, the weather for most of the event stayed dry. The launch was well attended with a good level of media attention from Radio Merseyside and the Liverpool Echo.  Well done to all those involved!

Decendant of Kitty Wilkinson pictured with the Portrait bench in Everton Park.

Monday, 8 October 2012

Connect2 Opening Event- Kirkby

ENGAGE recently attended and documented the Connect 2 Opening in Kirkby.  Luckily the weather stayed dry with a good turn out for the unveiling of the portrait bench in celebration of the new network of routes.  Well done to everyone involved!

Wednesday, 1 August 2012

TPT Newsletter

Wow!  Big thank you to the TPT office for giving 'ENGAGE' a section in their newsletter.  Hopefully we are focusing and finalising this initial stage to the project soon... lots of work to be done!!!

Your involvement???  Perhaps you would like to be involved in some of the ENGAGE project.  We are currently putting together the text for the digital booklets and mini websites.  We would be interested in hearing from anyone who has specific information regarding the Liverpool Loop section of the Trail.  Potential Themes are: Historical aspects of the Trail, Biodiversity, Wildlife, Community Projects, Tackling Vandalism, Inspirational Poetry, Creative Writing or simply how you use the Trail... and how much you enjoy it.  If you would like to write a paragraph or two, we may be able to use it to help publicise the Trail.  Please get in touch... 

Thank you again for your interest in the ENGAGE project.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Project Progression and Update

It's been a while since I last posted an update on the project.  In the coming weeks ENGAGE hopes to round up the initial stage of the project with the completion of the digital booklet that is currently ongoing.  There has been an organic flow to the progression of the project since its outset with the ideas and image focus changing throughout.  The end result of the initial stage has never been a definitive idea, more of a... 'let's see what happens'.  The response to the initial questionnaire was impressive with over 50 responses being received.  This gave a good insight to the impressions and thoughts (good and bad) surrounding the Trail and Liverpool Loop Section.  A really useful exercise, the responses allowed the ideas and project to change, build and develop.  Thank you to all who took part.

The project now aims now to produce one downloadable digital booklet.  This booklet combines imagery and text surrounding various topics in relation to the Trail.  The photography has been produced in response to the feedback gathered by the questionnaire, Trail users and local residents to the Trail.  It is also hoped that 'snippets' of the information and imagery offered can be installed out on the Trail via QR codes and available to view and read on mobile devices.  Again, it's an organic project, and ideas and progression may change, but always develop!

In addition to the activity above, It's been a busy time during May and June at the College.  St Helens College has now seen the completion of another contingent of Photography Degree Students some of which were and remain involved in ENGAGE.  Congratulations to the 10 students on the completion of their BA Honours Degree!  The Degree has now successfully gone through validation with Chester University and will be moving from John Moores University.

On a personal note, and adding to the activity... welcome to the world Cecilia May Callaghan (My Daughter).  Born on the 22nd of June 2012.

Please don't hesitate to make contact if you would like any further information on 'ENGAGE the Trail'.  We are currently interested in hearing from anyone who has any particular information or interest in the historical and/or Bio diversity aspects of the Trail and Liverpool Loop Line.

Thank you again for your continued interest in the project.  I hope to continue to post on the site in the coming days and weeks as the project progresses.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Sustrans Merseyside and Cheshire Volunteers' Bulletin

A recent mention in the May addition of the 'Sustrans Merseyside and Cheshire Volunteers' Bulletin'.  Once again a massive thank you to the support from Sustrans and The Trans Pennine Trail for their support with the ENGAGE Project.

Loop Line Volunteers Work Day

On the 12th of May, I took a ride out to capture some images of a volunteer work day on the Norris Green area of the Liverpool Line.  Extremely impressed with the work that is going on there... Well done to all those involved!  Images and interviews captured will be used in the Digital Booklet Publication that is currently being created.

Photos JC


Follow us on Twitter @engagethetrail

Monday, 30 April 2012


It hasn’t been the best of weather recently for arranging photography trips out on the Trail.  Nevertheless, the ENGAGE group of St Helens College photographers have been out and about.

We were overwhelmed by the response to the survey of Trail users and supporters.  It certainly highlighted the diversity of perceptions, views and thoughts surrounding our focus and pilot area of the Liverpool Loop Line.  Thank you to all who have offered their feedback.  It has initiated many ideas and indicated definite focus directions to approach photographically.

Our focus now is to produce a series of online and downloadable digital booklets incorporating the images captured and the words and stories offered from the survey.  Primarily, the three areas of exploration through the digital booklets will address the ‘Hidden History’, ‘Marks Made’ (Tackling vandalism and antisocial behaviour) and ‘Biodiversity’.  If you have any specific information that you feel would benefit these areas of exploration, then please get in touch. We would particularly like to hear from anyone who has any stories or memories of travelling on the train along the Liverpool Loop Line, or living in the proximity when the line was live?

Ultimately, if the ENGAGE project informs and inspires more people to use and recognise the amazing resource of the Liverpool Loop Line and Trans Pennine Trail, this is a positive outcome to this pilot stage of the project.  Please keep up to date with the progression of the ENGAGE project at  and , or if you would like to make contact email

Photographs TL- JC, TR-Radka Dolinska
BL-Tracey Johnson, BR-Ray Price.

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Thanks for the responses!

Thanks again is given to all those who have responded to the ENGAGE questionnaire. Nearly 50 responses have been submitted and this has given us a massive wealth of information to work with.  This information, together with the images captured by the ENGAGE group is now being closely scrutinised in order to formulate a presentation of the work created.

Trail Visit 10/04/12

Photos by JC

10th of April 2012 A wet and windy day out on the Trail with the occasional glimpse of the sun.  Meeting at the National Wild Flower Centre, we walked down to explore the Trail between the Broad Green to Halewood Area.  All the photos taken by the ENGAGE group are now being compiled.  The next stage of the project will be to edit down and select imagery to formulate a product and presentation of the work created.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

ENGAGE Publicity!

The publicity surrounding ENGAGE has been spreading- below is the recent advert/article on the Merseyside travel and transport website

Wednesday, 28 March 2012


The ENGAGE group came together on Friday the 23rd of March.  The aim of the meeting was to progress the work and gather further ideas in relation to the responses that have been received.  We now have approximately 48 responses to the questionnaire.  This has given us a massive resource to begin working on, and to visually respond to.  Theme areas were discussed and a potential focus for the layout of a digital booklet.  It is proposed that a digital booklet will give us an achievable goal within the near future and the current time-scale of this stage of the ENGAGE project.  As well as the publication of the digital booklet online and using new media, it is envisioned that this will also give a platform to develop further and future stages of 'ENGAGE the Trail'. 

The idea is that we will use some of the theme areas discussed during meeting, create a series of images (digital pages), then finish any publication (digital booklet) with images/text of volunteers looking after and maintaining the trail.  This would simply highlight some of the positive areas that people have discussed and respond to those who have said negative elements.

Sketch/Design/Example proposed for the potential layout of the digital booklet.

The ENGAGE group are individually considering how they would like to visually respond to some of these theme areas with a future Trail visit arranged for the 10th of April during the Easter break.

Many thanks to those who have already responded to the questionnaire and your involvement in 'ENGAGE the Trail'.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Meeting Notes Friday 16th March 2012

  • General discussion to the progression of the project and an opportunity to acknowledge the public responses that have been submitted through the questionnaire.  
Potential image creation options in response to feedback...
  • Use of individual words in relation to random images captured.
  • Historical context- 'Hidden History'.
  • Addressing the human need for space. (Typology)
  • Transport Link and routes to work.
It was also discussed to potentially approach and photograph one of the clean up/workdays. 

(Ref: Typology- A systematic classification or study of types.)

Many thanks to all those who have responded to the questionnaire so far.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

ENGAGE the Weather

'ENGAGE the Weather' is back on!  Tab at the top of the page.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Updates to the Blog/Site

Recent updates to the Blog/Site include...

  • New web address of
  • ENGAGE The Date... keep up to date with planned events, meetings, trail visits and the overall progression of the project. (tab menu at the top of the page)
  • ENGAGE the Weather... if you're planning on walking, cycling, jumping on horse back or out taking photos... be prepared! (tab menu at the top of the page)  The Met Office Widget didn't work very well!

Monday, 12 March 2012


ENGAGE an Audience.

Since we went officially live on Friday (9/3/12 -approx 3pm) with a request for a response from the general public and those who use the Trail, there have been 28 responses to the questionnaire and over 60 hits on the Blog site.  Many of those who have responded to the questionnaire have also submitted an email address, indicating that they would like to be kept up to date with the developments of ENGAGE.  This, in combination with the potential of some form of installation on the trail and links within the TPT and Sustrans Sites, means we have a sizeable audience for the project and photographic work.

ENGAGE Profile.

As a group we now have web address which links directly to the ENGAGE Blog/site.

ENGAGE Photography Brief.

I will be uploading a link to the photography brief on the main Blog so that members of the public have a reference to the work that is being produced.

ENGAGE Meeting.

I'm hoping that the ENGAGE group can gather this Friday 16/03/12 at 1.30pm, J316?  The meeting has a simple agenda.

·         Creativity, idea generation and individual project development in response to the questionnaire.
·         Setting out the timescale for the project.
·         Planning future field visits to the Trail.

Once again, many thanks for all your involvement in ENGAGE.  I hope the students at St Helens College see this as an opportunity to advance their individual professional development and practice.  Also thank you to all the members of the public and Trail users who have shown an interest in ENGAGE.

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Photos by Luke Martley

Further photos from the recent visit to the Trail between Birkdale and Southport.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Photos by Alison Maher

Further photos from the recent visit to the Trail between Birkdale and Southport.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Photography by John Callaghan: ENGAGE the Trail (Trips)

Photography by John Callaghan: ENGAGE the Trail (Trips): Recent images (24/02/12) taken on a visit to the Trail. Part of the ENGAGE project.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Looking Ahead

A meeting has been arranged for the 7th of March 2012.  JC will be welcoming Mandy Loach of the TPT and Alice Rickwood (Sustrans) to St Helens College.  The aim of the meeting is to discuss potential avenues, focus and application of the ENGAGE project.

Recent Photos from the Birkdale - Soutport visit

Photos taken on the 24th February 2012.  4 members of the engage group braved the bad weather to visit the Trail between Birkdale and Southport.  An interesting visit giving a contrast to the previous visit and experience around the Broadgreen and Croxteth area of the Trail.  The full gallery of images can be found on our Facebook

 Photos by Ray Price

Photos by John Callaghan

New Uploaded Images

New images have now been uploaded and submitted...

The full gallery of images can be seen on our Facebook page...

Photos by Luke Martley

Photos by Tracey Johnson

Friday, 24 February 2012

ENGAGE...We're on the map!

SUSTRANS have recently published and distributed a volunteers newsletter.  I'm glad to say, ENGAGE has been highlighted as one of the potential visions for 2012 (bottom of page 2).  Thank you to Sustrans for the extremely generous mention, and thank you to all who have taken part so far.  Let's keep this project going!!

If you would like to see the news letter... Click Here!

Trail to the Sea

Meeting at Birkdale station, members of the ENGAGE group were already cold,windswept and soaked by the morning rain. Luke turned up appropriately dressed for the walk in a short sleeve shirt and no coat...well done Luke! We took the short walk from the station towards the sea then followed the trail north to Soutport to the start/ finish marker. Films to process, and digi's to edit...Looking forward to seeing images from this location visit.

Luke in his all weather gear