Democracy Street is a newly developed mobile web app where people can discover and explore streets that have a connection to democracy. These include streets or places named after a Parliamentarian or those that highlight key events in the country’s democratic history. The idea is that once a place is discovered people will upload selfies or photos which will then be used to create new pieces of art, including creative maps of the UK, which will be exhibited in November.

Commissioned with support from The Speaker’s Art Fund and Arts Council England, the project is led by artist Jon Adams. Adams has Asperger’s syndrome, which enables him to systemise data and visualise patterns. Using this unique skill he will use data generated through user’s contributions to the mobile web app as the stimulus to create new artistic maps of the UK.

Mr Speaker, Rt Hon John Bercow MP, said access to and engagement with Parliamentary history can open the door to exciting experiences, learning opportunities and enhanced democratic engagement for people of all ages. “The Montfort parliament and Magna Carta anniversaries, which we commemorate in 2015, provide the perfect opportunity to remember the beginning of the UK’s democratic journey,” he said. “Democracy Street is designed to act as a catalyst that inspires people to find out more about their local area and to go on journeys of discovery about people and events of historical significance.”

• Visit the web app via a mobile device to start exploring and discovering streets:
• An interactive map that shows which streets are being ‘discovered’ in real time can be viewed via desktop PC or Mac
• Watch a short video explaining Democracy Street, featuring artist Jon Adams

Users discover ‘democratic streets’ by choosing to ‘Find Streets Around Me’ or ‘Manually Drop a Pin’ anywhere in the UK. The database contains information about 32,000 named Parliamentarians from 1215 – 2015. The web app features detailed rich content for 400 of these entries; images, biographies and information about people’s impact on society.

“Democracy Street highlights the importance that democracy plays in all our lives. From Winston Churchill Avenue in Portsmouth and Suffrage Street (near Ballot Street) in Smethwick to Magna Carta Lane in Staines, our democratic heritage has shaped streets across the UK,” said Adams “The project is democratic as everyone who takes part makes 'a part' of the map, contributing to the bigger picture.”

Information has been sourced from the History of Parliament Trust and The National Archives, and 250 images are pulled from the National Portrait Gallery’s Collection. Democracy Street has been developed by digital design agency Si digital as a web app built in HTML5.

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