The Family La Bonche are the youth circus of the North East Circus Development Trust (Circus Central). They worked in partnership with Tyne and Wear Archives and Discovery Museum to find out about the circus heritage of the North East, focussing on the Fenwick Circus Collection. Young people came up with the idea having been introduced to the archive collection.
30 young people spent time exploring the collection, visited the National Fairground Archive, and interviewed circus performers and collected their stories. They selected material to digitise and developed an exhibition which was displayed as a backdrop for their performances. They created a newspaper to share stories and explain the project. Their research also became the basis for a high-production book titled Dinna Forget. Taking newspaper cuttings and posters as inspiration, they recreated historic acts, bringing characters such as ‘Koringa, the world’s only female fakir’ to life for contemporary audiences. They performed at the Great North Museum, Discovery Museum, Fitzwilliam Museum and at the British Juggling Convention. Some used the project to achieve Silver Arts Award.