New audio trails bring Reading's hidden histories to life

Two new audio trails launch on 21 June, offering to take listeners on an exciting journey of discovery into Reading’s past.

Reading Borough Council’s High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) team is working in partnership with Sound UK to create two self-guided audio trails around the town centre’s heritage sites.

Created by local artists Aundre Goddard, Fiona Talkington and Richard Bentley, each trail will take listeners on a journey celebrating Reading’s heritage and revealing hidden histories along the two routes.

The new audio trails include:

  • No ifs, No buts, Only Gingernuts: Huntley & Palmers Journey
    Market Place & London Street:
     Huntley & Palmers themed trail - take a journey through time and the world of biscuits with this fascinating audio trail from Market Place to London Street by Aundre Goddard and Richard Bentley. Inspired by women workers and tour guides from Huntley and Palmers, listen to the stories of those who gave this world-famous biscuit factory its sense of family. Learn about the people, its history and processes that went into creating and distributing biscuits worldwide to make Huntley & Palmers of Reading’s London Street the company we all know and love.
  • Pies, pints and protest - the hidden worlds of Castle Street & St Mary’s Butts: Join BBC presenter and long-term Reading resident Fiona Talkington and sound artist Richard Bentley on an engaging audio walk that brings the rich history of St Mary’s Butts and Castle Street to life. This self-guided journey reveals often hidden histories from up to 500 years ago and celebrates iconic local buildings, people and even animals.

The audio trails are free and will be available to listen from 21 June onwards and you will be able to walk the trail using your smartphones and personal headphones:

The audio trails are produced by Sound UK in association with local arts organisations Readipop and Berserk Productions, commissioned by Reading Council and funded by Historic England as part of the wider national High Street Heritage Action Zone (HSHAZ) project.

These new audio trails add to the London Street audio trail produced in 2021 by Aundre Goddard and Richard Bentley with Sound UK: HistoricEngland.org.uk/ReadingSoundWalk