In our second blog on our Hidden Histories, Hidden Historians project, professional archivist, Heather Emily Roberts tells us more about the five community
groups we're working with, and gives a taster of what you can expect from their exhibition at the fabulous
Archives+ opening later in the year.
Starting in 1992, this charity is run by
and supports learning disabled adults who campaign for disability rights. Their
archive is a huge visual resource of photographs and newsletters which tell its
story from the very first day to happenings of the last month. They are
designing an exhibition about the charity’s fantastic journey and development
and what it has come to mean for those involved. I’m really excited about the
content, it’s going to be a great exhibition!
Just the simple act of talking to young
people on the streets of Ardwick and Longsight led to M13 Youth Project being
founded back in 1995. The project has since supported countless of individuals
and it is their ethos of “love, think, create, reflect, enjoy, achieve and make
a positive difference in their world” that they wish to share via their archive
material in the exhibition. This digital display will be interesting not just
for its story, but how it’s told. Much of their real work is conversation and
much of their real presence is the atmosphere they create. It could make for a
very interesting and mixed display.
This famous hub of Levenshulme life is set
in a beautifully renovated United Reformed Church smack bang in the middle of
the town’s busiest street. When you walk into the café you can see how diverse
and community-driven the local area is. This is the story that Inspire wish
tell with their exhibition: the story of Levenshulme as told from inside the
walls of this building. From church community to transformation to the current
diverse populous, it all happens in these old stone walls.
These young people act as a representative
for their generation within Oldham Council. They campaign for health, wellbeing
and so much more. They are an extremely diverse group of people and they are
using the exhibition to explore their own personal family histories, using them
to showcase how their different backgrounds come together to make their
organisation even stronger, full of understanding and acceptance. There are
fascinating stories lined up to share with you in November.
United of Manchester
In 2005, fans of Manchester United
protested the corporate take-over of the famous club and formed their own
community football club. Its Sporting Memories Group members recall playing
with the famous Nobby Stiles in the streets of Manchester. They are very proud
of North Manchester and its innovations in industry and sport. Their premises
are smack bang in the middle of a geographical treasure map of local history
with memories and ghosts of landmarks in spitting distance from their grounds.
Their exhibition is hoping to highlight some of these forgotten legacies of
their area. I’m looking forward to learning a lot!
We are at the second stage of our “collect,
curate, create” process and are guiding the groups in putting the stories
together within their own exhibition parameters. We’re certainly not short of
content! Exhibitions should be ready by the end of summer to be showcased and
launched in November.
Heather Emily Roberts, professional archivist and owner of HerArchivist: Archive and Heritage Consultancy.