as well as having an idea of what happened in the recent and distant past.
Our own experiences are influenced by others – teacher, friend, mentor, respected team member, inspirational speaker… and their experiences were influenced by another set of teachers, friends, mentor… and so it went on. In this web supported time there will be YouTube films or WordPress blogs that may add to these human connections and the motivation may now come from a www of resources as well. Not just relying on the web but getting involved is an important part of any living history process and with this in mind some museums and galleries are promoting a range of activities to all ages.
The examples I am going to mention are from the recently opened Experience Barnsley museum and discovery centre based in parts of the Barnsley Town Hall. Museums at Night http://museumsatnight.wordpress.com/ (15 – 17 May 2014) is an annual UK-wide festival which seeks to encourage visitors into museums, galleries and heritage sites by throwing their doors open after hours and putting on special evening events. A great way to stimulate the imagination and Experience Barnsley will be opening on Friday 16th May with some animation events as part of the festival.
As the museum and archives have developed over a number of year the process of using audio to capture local history with local voices has been very effective. As part of this initiative the museums team will be helping to collect the stories from the first world war; https://www.barnsley.gov.uk/news-and-events/news/2014/may/barnsley-museums-wants-people-to-share-their-first-world-war-stories This connects well with the new gardens at the side of the museum, the Barnsley Pals Centenary Square, and future art works for the area.
History is so much about our current actions and Penelope J. Corfield argues a very good case for a more positive view of the importance of the subject in the article All people are living histories – which is why History matters
History matters for us all and I hope that you can get involved in some way whether it is visiting somewhere for the first time, taking some friends to visit or recounting your history for future generations, I hope you enjoy the experience.
© P.R.Birkby 2014