The Reader: The Calderstones Story

Core created the Calderstones Story exhibition at The Reader in Liverpool’s Calderstones Park, using the theme of storytelling to connect the site’s ancient origins with its modern-day purpose as a place for shared reading.

The Reader promotes community wellbeing through shared reading, targeting loneliness in the elderly, illiteracy in adults and encouraging reading in low attainment areas. It also works with looked-after children, people in recovery from substance misuse, prisoners, individuals living with dementia, parents, teachers, and people with mental and physical health issues to improve lives through shared reading experiences.

The Reader recently secured a permanent home in the historic Calderstones Mansion in Liverpool's Calderstones Park. Core worked with The Reader to display an exhibition in several rooms of the house, telling the story of the mansion and the ancient Calder Stones after which the park is named.

Our interpretation begins with the Calder Stones - neolithic funerary monuments, now cared for by The Reader and whose markings can tell us something about the origins of shared storytelling. A timeline plots the evolution of language and storytelling through the ages, while interactives let visitors image themselves within a neolithic tomb and locate other neolithic sites in the Merseyside area.

We continue the story through to the 19th-century Calderstones mansion, tracing its history through recreated period furniture, an interactive magic lantern, and fun costume chest and hat stand.