Coconuts is changing – onwards and upwards, as we never tire of saying at Maison Coconuts.
The people who brought you the virtual museum 100yearsofcoconuts.co.uk, a series of Q&A sessions with U’s legends, a vibrant social media presence, Happy Harry merchandise and much more are embarking on inspiring new ventures.
As you may have seen in the paper or heard on your wireless, we’ve been granted funding by the Heritage Lottery Fund, under the Our Heritage scheme, that will enable us to tell the story of Cambridge United in a mini-museum in the Supporters’ Club. The exhibit, for which plans are being drawn up, will show how United evolved from modest beginnings in the Barnwell district of the early 20th century to become a football club that is the envy of many others, while never forgetting where it came from.
The roles played by supporters, officials, players and managers throughout the history of our community-rooted club will be highlighted in the display. On show will be documents, photographs, memorabilia and other artefacts, and there will be a video display showcasing the oral history we’ve been collecting since 2012, when Coconuts was launched by CFU as part of the club’s centenary celebrations.
But the story of the U’s will not just exist as a static display. We’re committed to taking it out into the community that has developed and cherished the club from the start.
Pop-up exhibits are being planned for local museums (beginning at the Museum of Cambridge in October), open days and other community events. Watch the
The Abbey People Big Lunch at Dudley Road Rec on Sunday, June 7 saw the Abbey community come together for a day of sun, fun and food. It was the ideal opportunity for Coconuts to make its debut at a community event, make new friends and let them have a go at the coconuts. Roll up! Roll up!
video on this page to see how we took part in our first community event, the Abbey People Big Lunch.
There's more: we’re going to be working with the Cambridge United Community Trust to take the story into schools. We’re going to collaborate with education professionals to complement their curricula, explaining why and how United came into being. This is not just the history of a football club: it’s the social history of communities too.
The Lottery money is also giving us the chance to develop other projects close to our hearts: the setting up of a former players’ association and a Cambridge United hall of fame. We’ll keep you fully updated on those plans as they come to fruition.
We’ve got a hell of a lot of challenging work coming up, but we can’t wait. Keep checking this blog, and Coconuts’ pages on Facebook and Twitter, for news as it happens. And let us know what you think of our plans, and how you think we're doing, in Comments.
Cheerio for now.