Knitting together in Pelham Square

Photo:Knitting the map in Pelham Square I

Knitting the map in Pelham Square I

Photo by Mar Arranz

Photo:Knitting the map in Pelham Square II

Knitting the map in Pelham Square II

Photo by Mar Arranz

Contribution to 'Knitting the Map' project

By Mar Arranz, North Laine resident

I have lived in North Laine for just over two years and I feel very lucky to have such a beautiful garden on my doorstep - Pelham Square.

Knitting in the streets

When Sue Craig, coordinator of the 'Knitting the Map' project, talked to me about coordinating the North Laine section of the map, I had a dream of it being knitted in Pelham Square, because the project is about building community. In my community in Spain, the knitting is done in the streets while the people chat, share and learn from each other.

Way of creating a community spirit

I am not very good at knitting. In fact, I have not knitted since I left home. But I thought that the idea was an excellent way of creating a community spirit.

We met twice

We decided to meet in the Square on 30 June and 7 July 2013 and we were really lucky with the weather. In fact on the 7th we had to look for shade because the sun was too strong.

Knitting problems solved

We chatted, we laughed we learnt more about each other and about the North Laine, at the same time as knitting. We also taught each other how to solve knitting problems, because knitting a map is not easy at all. But doing and undoing, chatting and eating, the time goes by very quickly.

All contributors recorded

Sue is really passionate about the map and her enthusiasm was contagious, including even to some passers-by. The names of all the people involved were recorded alongside the individual strips they knitted.

Room for more knitters

There is still room for more knitters, so if you could not come previously but you would like to do a little bit, contact Sue via .

If there's a zocalo this year...

If there is to be a ‘Brighton Zocalo’ this year, I invite you to step out of your house and knit, as I will do.

What is a zocalo?

BRIGHTON ZOCALO has been an attempt to evoke the spirit of the piazza. In countries like Mexico (where the word zocalo originates) hanging out on the street with friends and neighbours is part of the culture. In England we sometimes need a little coaxing. On Zocalo Day you’re invited to step out from your home, plonk a chair on the street and get to know your neighbours. Of course, if you want to share tea and biscuits with them, all the better.

Started in Hanover

Brighton Zocalo was started in the Hanover area of Brighton by White Dot, the campaign against television. It has been expanding throughout the city each year. Lots of people have joined in, dragging out sofas, bringing games to play, hanging fairy lights and sharing food and drink.

Date for 2013 not yet announced

Brighton Zocalo is usually the first Sunday in September, but at the time of writing this their website ( has not been updated for 2013. North Laine must surely be an ideal place to have a Zocalo Day….

[Previously published in the North Laine Runner, No 223, July/August 2013]

This page was added on 12/08/2013.

If you're already a registered user of this site, please login using the form on the left-hand side of this page.