Weathering Waterways is a two-part guided walk along the subterranean River Fleet in London, England and the Dumaresq Creek in Armidale, New South Wales, Australia. Through these walks, we explore climate change through lived experience, paying attention to how traces of current unsustainable practices and colonialism, embedded within the built and natural environments, reverberate in our understandings of planetary crisis.
During the London (the capital of England) walk, we will reflect on the history of water and atmosphere as well as on the histories and experiences which link the city with Armidale; a region now referred to as ‘New England’ and the country of the aboriginal Anēwan people. The walk will start at Australia House and follow the route of the Fleet River, now almost entirely underground but once a major waterway and port in London. Parallel walks exploring the same issues will take place along Dumeresq Creek, running through the centre of Armidale.
Against the backdrop of COP26 and its theme of ‘uniting the world to tackle climate change’, these walks reflect on how neither ‘uniting the world’ nor ‘tackling climate change’ are monolithic. The world is already united; through the historically-grown power structures that create the extractive and imbalanced global economy. Weathering Waterways highlights these entanglements and draws attention to the different ways that different communities know, manage, resist and inhabit built climates that are changing; that is, how they ‘weather’ worlds.
The project is a collaboration between academics Jennifer Hamilton (University of New England), George Adamson and Elias Yassin (King’s College London) and artists Inés Cámara Leret (based in London and Madrid) and Gabi Briggs (based in Anēwan country, now called New England).