In 2012, the Ivy House pub in Peckham was sold to property developers but the locals triumphantly saved it by getting it listed as the first asset of community value in the UK, and then purchasing it themselves. The film tells the story through a portrait of intertwining voices which can be heard as a collection of individual testaments or as a folk-operatic arrangement. It weaves dance, poetry and song through the multi-layered soundscape, but the Ivy House itself remains the central character, embodied and inhabited by memories beyond its current guests.
“Public House is a revelation from film maker Sarah Turner. She passionately defends the existence of a neighbourhood pub by emptying it of inhabitants like a village under siege, then filling it again, bringing it back to life until it's bursting with layers of voices, stories of multi-generations, poetry, tap dancing and storytelling.” Lizzie Borden
Director Sarah Turner will be with us afterwards to discuss the all too common issues raised about public space and development, and her creative solutions to devising this fond, 3-D portrait of people and place. Sarah is an artist, filmmaker, writer, curator and academic. Her feature films include Ecology and Perestroika. Public House was nominated for the Grierson Documentary Award and premiered at the London Film Festival in 2015.