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Adastral: An exhibition by University of Suffolk Photographer, Noel Bowler

11 Oct 2021 3:45PM

The latest exhibition by Senior Photography Lecturer at the University of Suffolk, Noel Bowler, is now on display at BT’s Adastral Park.

Adastral is an ongoing collaboration between the University and BT that explores the history of Adastral Park as a place of work and cultural significance for the region and the telecoms industry.

For the past two years, Noel Bowler has worked with Meral Bence, BT- Adastral Park Vision and Strategy Manager, and the full backing of BT to access this famous site looking at the office spaces, the people, the histories and the innovations that occurred here.

Noel said, “We tend to remember the people that brought innovation to our workplace but over time we slowly erase the very spaces that allowed these innovations to flourish. Adastral is a visual record of these spaces, a celebration of British technological innovation and a workforce that has spanned over five decades. These workspaces, desks, labs and workshops of the thousands of ordinary women and men whose tireless efforts and years of service has contributed to today’s legacy of innovation.”

“In the ever-changing face of the work and the workforce, these spaces and locations are evolving, and in a post-COVID world this has only been accelerated. Adastral is one small part of a much broader project that aims to create a permanent visual archive of these workspaces before they change forever. This archive will not only be a lasting legacy of our achievements but will represent a cross-section of how we worked throughout the late 20th Century.”

Meral said, “Supporting Noel on his vision to capture workspaces has been an amazing journey and at Adastral Park with its many ‘workspaces’- from traditional office spaces, to labs, network equipment and showcases, it is no wonder that it has taken many visits, spanning over two years to capture these places. This project has given me personally a new perspective on how I see the Park and what is important to capture and archive for future generations to look back on and see how we worked, innovated, researched, and tested.”

Adastral will be on display at Adastral Park until the end of October. The Park is a secure site and therefore any visitors need to contact Meral Bence to register an interest in visiting the exhibition. Visiting slots and groups will then be organised, based on demand and availability. Please email  

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