I’m always writing little notes to myself as I increasingly find that things are liable to slip my mind.
Being based at Gloucestershire Archives is a daily reminder of the importance of preserving our shared history, and how the story of our family is the story of us.
My name is Kate O’Keefe and I’ve been appointed to manage the EVOKE reminiscence project which is part of ‘For The Record’. EVOKE aims to help people living with memory loss and dementia, using a reminiscence-based approach which has been shown to ‘increase the confidence of carers, improve communication with those living with dementia, and provide resources to support people to live well with dementia’.
Reconnecting people with their past is something I was involved in when I worked at Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museum: I was part of an education team which took ‘handling’ objects from the collections out into the community. I’ll never forget seeing a woman’s horrified expression on seeing a washing dolly, as she remembered the drudgery of wash days when she was newly married. Or a retired farmer who, cradling a set of long combination underwear, attributed his long life and good health to the fact that he had worn something very similar in his youth.
The EVOKE project aims to make a similar impact. It will use a computer ‘app’ called House of Memoriesto deliver reminiscence sessions which will be sparked by a specially created Gloucestershire package of photos and other memorabilia. House of Memories was developed by staff at Liverpool Museums. It’s won awards and plenty of evidence has been collected to show that it has a positive impact on people living with memory loss and dementia, generating a good feeling which lasts beyond the sessions.
If you know about a group or a setting which you think might enjoy an informal session with House of Memories, or if you would like to get involved with the project, please get in touch with me.
Last year Gloucestershire Archives applied for – and were successful in obtaining – a grant of £15,000 from the Local Government Association (LGA) digital channel shift programme. As the project is coming to an end, we’re delighted to announce that the new online system is up and running. Continue reading →
You may have seen Gloucestershire Archives’ online exhibition telling the story of ten young Jewish refugees who came to Gloucester in 1939. As we mark Holocaust Memorial Day 2018, we’re pleased to be able to share the moving story of one of those boys, as told by his son, Michael Zorek.
My father, Warren Zorek, passed away in December of 2006 at the age of 81. 68 years earlier, when he was just 13, his family was awaiting word about his admission into a program started soon after Kristallnacht, The Night of Broken Glass. This program allowed parents to send their children, some as young as 2, but not older than 16, out of Nazi occupied Europe until the political strife blew over. Continue reading →
As from this month we will be publishing a full list of the most recent new additions to our collections on our News page. You’ll also be able to read details of our major new catalogues as they are completed.
In this ‘new arrivals’ blog, we’re continuing to highlight our more unusual new arrivals. And these flyers certainly took the prize for being the most eye-catching!
They are among the personal papers given to us by Mr Alan Moore (collection reference D14592). Alan had a life-long interest in the 20th century development of Gloucester city centre, the development of bus and tram links across the county, and in Gloucestershire’s film theatres and concert halls. Among his collection are scrapbooks, research notes and, as the photograph shows, many colourful flyers for local concerts. This selection advertises events at the ABC Theatre in Gloucester, where artists such as Gerry and the Pacemakers, Billy J Kramer, Cliff Richard, Gene Pitney, Lulu and the Luvvers, Four Tops and Des O’Connor performed throughout the 1960s and 1970s. Many of the flyers are accompanied by ticket stubs, evidence of Alan being a keen attendee of these concerts. Tickets could be bought for as little as 75p a seat!
The “It” is the Barton and Tredworth community heritage website, an outcome of the Hidden Lives project of 2011-12 in which the Archives was a partner. The site was created using a bespoke platform designed by Community Sites, who specialize in assisting local communities to create their own web sites. However the format wasn’t ideal for the wider range of devices that can now access web sites, so Community Sites have just converted it into a WordPress based site.
How documents and cucumbers (almost) prove time travel is possible.
Throughout time, people have always asked questions that no matter how much thought is put into them, the answer will always prove to be elusive.
Questions like: can true serenity of the mind ever be achieved? Why do cucumbers need to be wrapped in plastic? Will anyone in the world, apart from me and children, ever find amusement in a whoopee cushion?
All excellent questions to ponder on, I think you’ll agree. But there is another which has been a science fiction staple for many years. It is this: is time travel possible?