Friday, 25 July 2008

World War Two exhibitions for Scotland

Museums Galleries Scotland will be running exhibitions to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Second World War at 10 locations, from the Museum nan Eilean on Lewis to the Hunterian Museum in Glasgow, as part of the Their Past Your Future project. The following is the Museums Galleries Scotland press release:

Museums Galleries Scotland has announced details of Big Lottery Funding of £590,000 for the continuation of a museums-led initiative that will see young people working with older generations in communities across Scotland.

Their Past Your Future Scotland Phase 1 commemorated the 60th anniversary of World War II through a touring exhibition and a series of community events including local exhibitions, entertainment, and events specifically created to generate intergenerational learning opportunities. One of the biggest outcomes was the gathering of invaluable first hand accounts, experiences and veterans stories that otherwise would never be known. The majority of these were extracted through interaction with schoolchildren or groups of young people.

Such is the success that Their Past Your Future Scotland Phase 2 will bring together young people and older generations in communities across Scotland capturing oral histories focussing on World War II and subsequent conflicts. The outputs from these oral history projects will be a series of some 300 online mini-exhibitions or 'vignettes' - oral histories and illustrative or contextual items from local and national collections. These may include diary extracts, newspaper articles, old photographs, archival film, documents, paintings, and photographed objects. Together, they will create a vivid story of a person, event or location.

The projects will cover a multitude of themes including Women in the Shipyards; Letters from Home; The Sea, Wrecks and Beachcombing; and The Clydebank Blitz.

One project will see the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders recall and discuss their experiences and memories of conflict with young Duke of Edinburgh's Award participants and members of the Tullochan Trust, an organisation providing diversionary activities for disadvantaged young people in the west central belt of Scotland. The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders have been involved in virtually every post-war conflict, including Korea, Malaya, Aden, Northern Ireland through to Iraq and Afghanistan, reflecting Scotland's involvement in conflict, peace-keeping roles and army life from World War II to the present day.

The first 10 museums and gallery projects of a possible 15 were also announced at an event at the Gordon Highlanders Museum, Aberdeen.

Joanne Orr, CEO of Museums Galleries Scotland, said:“The impact Their Past Your Future Scotland projects have had on communities across the country is staggering and I am delighted that we have the opportunity to further that work. Personal accounts and reminiscences like these hold much fascination for young people and they can bring a greater understanding of what life was like for their grandparents’ generation. People are now acutely aware of the importance and urgency to continue to gather this information now while the opportunity remains.”

Culture Minister Linda Fabiani said: “I’d like to congratulate Museums Galleries Scotland on the continuation of this wonderful and significant project. Phase 2 of Their Past Your Future will again see young people and older folk working together in communities across Scotland to deliver a body of work which will be thought provoking as well as entertaining.

“Scotland’s older people have a mine of information, stories and experience to impart and it’s therefore heartening to know that some of it is being captured through projects such as this for the benefit and education of younger citizens and the wider community.

“With museums and galleries across Scotland set to showcase work from Their Past Your Future, I am really looking forward to the project’s ongoing success and securing its abiding and hugely important legacy.’’

Their Past Your Future Scotland will culminate with the launch of a website in 2010. The vignettes and other outputs generated will available as a classroom teaching aid via Learning and Teaching Scotland’s new Scottish schools’ intranet, Glow. This ensures these projects become a rich educational resource for teachers and a global legacy for young people and the wider community involved.

The ten museums and galleries and their projects are:

Argyll & Sutherland Highlanders Museum, Stirling “Pull Up A Sandbag”
Hunterian Museum & Art Gallery, Glasgow “The Glasgow West War Story”
Kildonan Museum, South Uist, “Proiseact Beinn na Coraraidh”
Museum nan Eilean, Isle of Lewis “Lewis At War”
Renfrewshire Council “Re-Solve”
Scapa Flow Visitor Centre, “Fortress Orkney”
Gordon Highlanders Museum, Aberdeen, "Post-War Conflicts and Peace-Keeping Missions"
The Museum of The Black Watch, Perth, “In Peace And War”
West Dunbartonshire Council, “Singers, Sirens and Silent Heroes”
West Lothian Council “West Lothian and The Forgotten War”

Scotland's Greatest Story
Professional family history research & genealogical problem solving


ina curran said...

My name is Ina Curran (Steven). My father John Steven was in the regiment of the Argyle and Sutherland Highlanders. I do have an impressive needlepoint, which my father did of his regiment badge while in capitivity in Germany. Would thi be the sort of thing you might be interested in.

Chris Paton said...

Hi Ina,

It's not my project! However, you can contact the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders's museum at - I;m sure they would be only too glad to hear from you!