I’m Edward Jackson, an academic and local history enthusiast. When I’m not in a library drinking coffee, you can find me in a café reading. I volunteered for Birmingham 68 mainly to learn more about a city that, although I’ve worked in it for several years, I knew very little about. Also, I’ve always been fascinated by 1960’s culture and politics so this seemed like the perfect project. I’ve been researching student activism at the University of Birmingham, urban redevelopment in Balsall Heath, and anti-racist demos in the city centre. I’ve also learnt more about Birmingham’s buzzing and innovative art scene during this time, and the significant role the MAC played within this. It’s given me a greater appreciation of the fact that things did actually happen in Birmingham in the 60’s, despite my assumption that the ‘1960’s’ only really happened in London! I’ve enjoyed conducting oral history interviews the most. It’s very rewarding to talk to people about their experiences and to see them think of their own lives as being historically interesting. Discovering that Yoko Ono came to Birmingham to hold a ‘Be-In’ has been an exciting part of my research. Writing a blog post on this was really enjoyable, and I’m excited to share it with others, as well as the research I’ll continue to do on the history of Birmingham.