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Virtual Exhibition

This project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) School for Public Health Research (SPHR) Grant Reference Number PD-SPH-2015-10025. The views expressed are those of the workshop participants and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.

About the Exhibition

Thank you for joining the Changing People, Places and Food Exhibition.

The exhibition is the outcome of Photovoice workshops held with Hull residents as part of a research project, exploring the interaction between people and (food) places and what this means for public health.

During the workshops, participants captured and shared their experiences of food and food places in Hull through photographs. The photographs contributed by workshop participants are displayed at this exhibition with some comments by the photographer /other participants.

Three broad themes were identified from the photographs and workshops:
Food legacies: food or food places that allow us to gain knowledge, share memories and create (cultural) experiences
Eating well: Eating to feed the body (safely) and the soul (socially)
Food spaces: Food places and their meanings


A special thank you to all the participants of the workshops from the Open Doors Hull and the Goodwin Development Trust for being a part of this project.

The exhibition was launched publicly at the Hull Central Library on the 3rd of October, where it was displayed until the 10th of October. It was also briefly hosted by the Welcome House. This online exhibition is generously hosted by the Hull Food Partnership.

The workshops and exhibition are part of a research project conducted in the United Kingdom by researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), funded by the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) School of Public Health Research and kindly supported by the Goodwin Development Trust and Open Doors Hull, Princes Street Avenue Methodist Church.

For further information, please contact ‘Tomi Ajetunmobi, Research Degree Student, LSHTM (

Food Legacy


“It’s one of Britain’s traditional foods and the  first reason I wanted to share it with you because it is [a] new thing for me. Like I said it is the moment that you spend with someone else from a different culture you could learn from different foods. That food in particular, I shared with some of my friends who is British [who] introduced me to foods from the British culture…It was new for me and at the same time I do enjoy it because its from a different culture and at the same time, I did not expect it to be delicious like that. It’s an emotional thing from them [for my British friends to share it with me]…in my culture they say ‘if you never go to your neighbour’s house, you will always think it is only your mum that cooks the best dishes…”.

“…so you can’t always go on the way food looks or you perceive a food because it is from a foreign culture; [because] you might look at it and think I don’t like the colour of that or I am not going to try that but when you actually taste it, you like the flavour…”


“For nearly the last 37 years, when I have the opportunity to go to a chip shop, I go to Smithy’s…on Beverley Road….That is an old sign that used to stand at the forecourt but currently just leans against the wall…It sums up what I think, it’s a British traditional food, with the Union Jack”

“…They don’t just sell fish and chips…Fish and chips is nice but it’s not really that healthy…they have real British food like stew and dumplings…there’s healthier stuff in there, like stew and stuff for people that want something different…”


“… This is food from Ethiopia. This one we eat with group and not just for eating alone… [the bread] is made with a special flour …called teff – it is not grown in England…it is healthy, there is stew with egg, chicken (cut specially – it has to be cut into twelve pieces)… a little bit of spinach, and then…fried meat and salad…peas with curry, the other picture also has rice…we are eating [together as a group] and sit around the same table…”


“…me and my little girl made this together and she absolutely loved it. I hear a lot of people say, especially when they come to like the pantry ‘I don’t know what to do with that…that won’t go straight in my microwave…we take a lot of it home and see what we can make …seeing things from scratch and seeing how quick it is to make…we are conscious of thinking things have to be ready now but things can’t be done now. As a family we can cook different meals together. In different cultures, …you see all the whole family involved in it [cooking] together …I think that is sad, that we are loosing out on things like that and I think the supermarkets have kind of encouraged that…”



“…the kitchen is very small…the cupboards where you keep the dishes and stuff [are the only ones in the photo], there is not enough space to keep the dishes…we have got a little one here, he comes in the kitchen and tries to pull everything from the tops…Apart from the [fact that the] kitchen is small, I like it here because we have got almost everything that we need for a kitchen, unlike back home [not in the UK], where you have to share one pot to do all the meals…” – RCO


“I like my kitchen…it is very big …perhaps [even bigger] than my bedroom…Whenever I wake up…I go directly to the kitchen and open everything and just [let in] some air…It is very clean and I always keep it like that…I like to cook – it makes me feel like cooking”– MRO


“I took this photograph to show how far the shops are…when we go shopping we cannot buy much because we have to carry it back (on foot) and it is a long way… [I wish I had a car] …”– MRO


“This is Berkhal International market, in Springbank. What I love about this shop is that it’s open 24 hours… The other shops near our home close very early so I go there (sometimes) and the price is okay…, but the fruit is not okay… [in most international shops], the fruits are [relatively] expensive, because they are imported” – HZO/ACO


“…Paragon square, I have chips from there and a cok…and I like to go and sit there and watch people pass by…I don’t think much of the place next door {Dominos} but the prices are absolutely phenomenal” – JTG


“That place is called Sunday market…[it] is open every Sunday and Wednesday from 8am to 2pm… and in summertime I think they are going to open very early, that’s what I heard from people…they sell a lot of different things: clothing, meat…and cheap things…” – HZO

“I would see it [going to the open market] as a social event as well…you are getting out and about…connecting to other people …” – JNG


“…The very first day we came into the house, we did not cook because everything was still in boxes so we decided to go [there- kebab shop] and met him…His attitude was very welcoming…”“the first impression is always important, that is the only thing that attracts, and makes a person to come back next time …anytime we go back he says ‘Oh come on in, you guys are back’…we have seen him act like that around other people as well…” – RCO

“…I once had a bad experience [in another eating place] …it was the welcome… the people were not friendly or racist…they just looked away and I just felt …this is not for me…” – HJO


“This store is really, really nice, sells fresh meat, the staff are really, really nice, there is a big selection [of meats]… towards the end of the day, the [staff] stand outside selling off cooked chicken, cheaply, the stuff that would usually get thrown away, so that it doesn’t waste…” – JNG


“This is the Church on Spring bank and it is open on a Tuesday between 10 and 12 o’clock…and anyone can pop along… they give out the food for homeless people but not just for homeless people but for people who are in poverty…there’s a lot going on for people that are struggling – food banks and food kitchens – it is just knowing what dates, what times and where…”“…And the people in there [volunteers] are lovely… you can go in there and its quite a social event. …You can go in there and get some free milk, bread and eggs and get some social support… They give the time, they are welcoming, they listen to you…it’s amazing…Just thank God for such places and people that are prepared to help other people…” – JNG

Eating Well?


“These brown paper packages were given at the Guild Hall recently…replacing what used to be a full banquet…” – MSG


“…In my country, we start milking cows at a very young age (starting with goats or lambs and joining mother or big sister until you get experience)…my point is that we don’t use a milking machine, because when you are using a milking machine, you can use it to a point that the cow starts bleeding…and the milk may have a little blood, which is not healthy at all…because when you are milking with your own hands you can’t milk to the point that you can see blood coming out…” – ACO

“What is the importance of the semi-skimmed or whole milk…who inspects the food to know if it has expired…?” HJO

“..Back at home [in my country], the cow milk has a distinct smell and taste, when you put it a cup…[and leave it outside overnight]… it is not milk anymore, it becomes yoghurt – but this milk [pictured] does not do that…So I don’t know how do they make it…is it 100% pure milk or do they put some chemicals?” – HZO


“ I have nasturtiums in my garden, mainly for two things because we love seeing things grow and I have got [] little ones…if they eat anything up, it smells lovely …and I know that they are not going to hurt themselves…It’s nice to have flowers but when you have a small space its lovely to grow fresh herbs…” – JTG

“ …[In the] old town what was Museums’ quarter …[there was]…garden in the late eighties and it was lots and lots of herbs and different plants… unfortunately they failed to maintain it properly and it is now just a series of flower beds…sometimes …you go past and the smell takes you back forty years …” – MSG


“… This is from the Pantry – I love it when we get something big like this… you have got your roast dinner…we made a curry, we made a pie with it and we put it on our pizza and sandwiches…when we are looking at food, when we go shopping, we have to look at how it is going to get us to the end of the week because we only do one shop [each week] …you go shopping for one thing but it can keep you going for a while…” – JTG


“…I think it wasn’t about the food particularly… this is an empty cup of coffee…something people do commonly here. It’s not the container that is meaningful to me, it’s the moment that I get and with whom I [ share it with]…through the moment and with nice people all around, you could be happy, whatever you eat…[to me] the meaning of life is the time you spend with that particular person and [how] you enjoy it…” – NTG


“I like to try things from different countries…it’s a two-way street – you learn from me and I learn from you – I have a [British] friend, who is like me (likes to try new things) and one day we decided to make a local food from my home country…we call this ‘pino’. It is garri (cassava)…mixed with tomato juice with meat – we used pork…” – NTO


[This is a collection of food that I consider]… “very good, healthy…popcorn, rich tea biscuits (which I sometimes get from the Goodwin Trust), a type of beans – (pronounced ‘pakela’ in my language, also known as runner beans in English) powder that can be used to make a snack…it is also grown on the allotment…, we use it to make a snack in Ethiopia”

“…and pistachio nuts, I love yes. I do eat them…I would eat them for a snack, very nice, very tasty…”


“…the [vegetables] are cut big, big, I don’t like it…I like how we make our salads because we put salt and oils, onions, tomatoes… and then we put herbs, such as lemon, salt ginger or garlic, it depends [there are different ingredients] …we make it very spicy and…we chop it into little pieces…” RCO/HZO/ACO/MRO


“I took this photograph to show the five-a-day, [a selection of] different fruits and vegetables eaten every day. I got them from the mini-market …fruits are (relatively) cheaper there…” – FTG


“These are potatoes from an allotment…which I work on with other ladies once a week. When we have a harvest like this, we can share it and take it home…fresh from the ground…” – FTG


“I have a big garden and I like farming…we have a big farm in my country…I grow vegetables… called ‘sukumawiki’ in Swahili…it’s not spinach, I don’t know what they call it in English…, tomatoes, mint, strawberry [white flowers] …hot chilli and green chilli and on the other side (not shown) is butternut squash…no flowers [in my garden] …In my country, we don’t have flowers.. we have them [flowers] but we farm [ prefer to grow] …banana, mango, coconut, watermelon, lots of sweet corn, lemon, orange, everything…” – MYG

“… and you just go outside and pick them. It’s called self-sufficiency, isn’t it? The ability to feed yourselves or to provide something and it used to be a very important part of the British working-class culture. It is less so now, people spend too much time watching TV and other things…to force councils to raise money for local services, the number of allotments was cut, things like churches used to teach people, used to organise classes in self-sufficiency… a culture of togetherness” -MSG


“I love this painting… [it is in the Ferens Art Gallery] … it reminds me of [my country] where I lived, the countryside, the man pulling the horse, the man feeding the chickens… the chickens [roaming freely] outside, so the eggs are natural, the meat is natural”…“I think of so many chickens growing quickly [mass produced] … and the egg [is] not natural, meat [is] not natural… Even when I buy [chickens in the] supermarket and try to wash it in water, it’s cuts [shreds] easily…it is not [firm] like in my country…” – FTG

“… [all the mass-produced chickens] …you get to the end of the day and it is wasted and there is no need for it… it is not like that in the countryside…there is a saying that ‘when you eat the pig, you eat everything but the squeal’ … [you] don’t waste things, you use everything…” – JTG


“I like [herbs] the mint and coriander which I have at home. I pick it and use it fresh for the taste… I put it in salad, I also put it in soup… it is cheap… I really like it in salad…I live in a flat [so cannot have a garden of herbs]” – FTG

“I prefer herbs [to] flowers …I wish I could grow everything that we eat…” – JTG


“…allotments have become fashionable…to get an allotment you need to wait maybe 2 years…and it is so expensive to grow your own things… [During] the lockdown a lot of things were not even available (like tomatoes, compost has been hard to get this year) and you need time to grow things and its hard work!… So [for me], herbs and spices take priority… [this picture shows the herbs in my garden such as] bay leaves, sage and all the things that grow widely in the garden and the children can just eat and not hurt themselves and it just smells nice…” – JTG

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