The Lockdown Lore Collection Project

Documenting Creative Responses to the Coronavirus Pandemic

Aboyne, photo by Sheila YoungThe coronavirus pandemic has altered our lives in ways that were almost impossible to imagine only a few months ago. In response to this new reality, people across Scotland and the world have been reaching out creatively in a variety of ways. Through our Elphinstone Institute Archives, we hope to document Scotland’s creative responses to the pandemic, but to do so we need your help!

Submit Your Contribution Here

For the moment we’re particularly interested in five strands of ‘Lockdown Lore’:

  1. handcrafted responses to the pandemic;
  2. stories of lockdown living;
  3. pandemic-related songs and tunes;
  4. pandemic-related poems;
  5. digital initiatives that have been put forward during the pandemic.

Simply put, we would like you to send us photos, songs, tunes, poems, talk to us about your lives under lockdown, and tell us about participatory digital initiatives you have created or know about. We’ll try to share as much as you have sent us as possible, making sure that this project is useful to the wider community. Your submission will also make a permanent contribution to our archives, ensuring this material is available to future generations.

Handcrafted Responses

During your daily exercise rituals you may have come across unique and interesting responses to the pandemic, such as window rainbows, chalk drawings, graffiti, stickers, house decorations, public messages, and so on. If so, please take a few photos for this project and submit them to us using this form.

Stories of Lockdown Living

Are you willing to be interviewed online about your lockdown experiences? Or would you like to send us a text about your lockdown experiences? Whether you work from home, are a key worker, are homeschooling bairns, have been furloughed, or whatever else, we'd be keen to hear from you. We have a small team of volunteer fieldworkers (staff, students, former students) who would love to talk to you about how you and your families have been dealing with the lockdown. Whether you'd like to be interviewed or want to submit a text, please use this online form.

Songs and Tunes

We are blessed to have many friends, students, and colleagues who are wonderful singer-songwriters and musicians. Have you written a song or a tune? Would you be willing to send us a video or audio recording of you singing or playing it? Please use this online form.


Have you written a poem in response to the pandemic? Whether it’s serious or funny, and whether you’re an experienced makar or this is your first poem, we’d be happy for you to share it with us as text or as an audio or video recording. Please use this online form.

Digital Initiatives

Access the Current Database of Initiatives Here

We would like to crowdsource a database of projects, initiatives, and campaigns in which you are participating to stay connected while at home. We are particularly interested in initiatives that are participative, that bring people into the same digital space to do things together. Some examples include largescale conversations through hashtags like #CovidCeilidh or #IsolationCreation, or the many workshops, quizzes, games, being held over video-meetings apps. Please let us know via this online form. We'll regularly upload the most recent document with all of the initiatives people have sent us, and highlight some on social media.

If you have any questions, please get in touch with our archives manager, Nicolas Le Bigre

Portobello Beach Chalk Message

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Aboyne Window Rainbow

Photo by Sheila Young

Fettercairn Phone Box

Photo by Simon Gall

Aberdeen Window Rainbow

Photo by Carley Williams

Restalrig Rainbow Steps

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Restalrig Street Rainbow

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Leith Window Rainbow

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Be Kind to Each Other, Leith Walk

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Water of Leith Card

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Supporting Key Workers, Leith

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Leith Links Window Advice

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Self-Isolating Dog

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Leith Walk Message

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre

Pandemic Scarecrow

Photo by Nicolas Le Bigre