Be Port

Be Port Sunlight is an online hub containing local histories from Port Sunlight, a model village and conservation area in England’s north-west.

The Village

A picturesque village with more than 900 Grade II listed houses and public buildings, Port Sunlight was founded in 1888 by the industrialist William Lever as a self-contained community for his soap factory workers. 

The village today is an immaculately preserved example of early town planning. A prototypical garden city, Port Sunlight’s manicured gardens and parklands offer abundant green space for the village’s residents and visitors, while cultural institutions like the Lady Lever Art Gallery and The Gladstone Theatre provide access to the arts. 

With just 2,000 residents, Port Sunlight is home to a small but thriving community.

The Project

Be Port Sunlight is an archive of audio and visual documents which convey a sense of life in Port Sunlight during the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

A series of themed podcasts present oral histories, while the Lockdown Collecting project provides an insight into the local lockdown experience through photographs and videos.  

The pandemic has impacted life across the world in ways we could not have imagined and are yet to fully comprehend. Be Port Sunlight is a snapshot of the intimate and shared moments which occurred in one village during this time.