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Emerging from Lockdown

Emerging from Lockdown is a University of Warwick research project led by Professor Jackie Hodgson (Warwick Law School; Centre for Operational Police Research).

The research

Since March 2020, the country has been in some form of lockdown, restricting our movement and our ability to meet with others in our homes, in cafes, bars and clubs, and outside.

This has been backed by police powers of dispersal, the use of temporary barriers to control public mobility, and the ability to issue fixed penalty notices of £100 where more than six people or two households have gathered outside; and up to £10,000 for those holding or involved in prohibited gatherings indoors of more than 30 people.

Through interviews with 25 people in Coventry city centre in June 2021, the research asks how people have experienced this loss of freedom and what their new-found liberty looks like as they emerge out of lockdown and return to the city.

This poses a further question about what ‘new normal’ spaces in the city may materialise, and the extent to which the extraordinary measures introduced in lockdown might be retained in a post-pandemic world.

We ask how have criminal justice powers to enforce public health restrictions have impacted individuals. How do people with young families, those working in front line services, retail, hospitality, the arts or at home experience the city? How did they understand the legal restrictions on their freedom of movement, and how does the city feel now that they're free to move, meet and gather as they please?

These responses will be woven into narratives to sit alongside the photographs, and as a voice-over to the photographic images in a short film.

Emerging from Lockdown is a research and engagement project led by Professor Jackie Hodgson (Warwick Law School; Centre for Operational Police Research) in collaboration with Professor Jon Coaffee (Sustainable Cities Global Research Priority and Centre for Operational Police Research), Dave Allen (The Grid Project) and Doreen Foster (Warwick Arts Centre).