Worcester Life Stories – in the words of local people

Finally, with just 3 days to spare before Christmas our project book ‘Worcester Life Stories – in the words of local people’ arrived. We are very pleased to share that the first print run has been so well received that we are almost sold out! Our second edition is with the printers as we speak and will be available from the Tourist Information Centre, Worcester City Art Gallery & Museum and Tudor House Museum at £19.99. Here’s one local lady’s review of the book:

“Just the cover of this book was enough to draw me into it – an intriguing photo of a smartly dressed lady and a man sitting on a wall, outside of a building in a lost part of the city…. Who were these people? Why are they there? And where exactly are they?

Going through the book there are many interesting stories accompanying the photos, photos of everyday people doing everyday things – photos of buildings which look familiar, but also different to how they are now; it made me question even more why these buildings were altered and in some cases, completely destroyed, The Blockhouse area being of particular interest to me having had family members live in that area.  The Blockhouse is now vastly different to how it was in times gone by, and it was so interesting to see and read about the massive changes in that area.

And it isn’t just photos of buildings and people – a photo which bought back some very personal memories was of the park, and in particular the massive slide at Lansdowne Park where I spent many a happy hour as a child- I had never seen a photograph of the park before, as it was vastly altered in the early 90’s to a more colourful and somewhat safer play park (some may say far more boring too!!)

This book is a treasure.  It covers topics not discussed in many other books about Worcester and the photos in it, along with the stories accompanying them, are fascinating and in some cases very poignant. The story of the lady who had no pictures of her father who had died when she was very young and the subsequent unearthing of a picture of him was incredibly moving.

I would love a second volume of this book if at all possible- it is a work of great importance to the history and social history of Worcester, every Worcester resident with even a tiny amount of interest in the area they live in should read it!!!”

We hope you enjoy the book as much as this lady did!

Have you explored our web platforms?

Two exciting new websites have been produced as part of this project: Life Stories Herefordshire & Worcestershire (hosted by the Herefordshire &Worcestershire Health and Care Trust) and Know Your Place Worcester (hosted by Worcester City Council). The former enables you to create your own personalised life story for your own private use or to share if you wish to, as well as to download Life Packs of information for reminiscence. The latter provides access to the thousands of historic records, photographs and maps held by the Worcester City Historic Environment Record, as well as contribute your own knowledge and images.

If you’re already making use of these websites, we’d love to hear from you. The University of Worcester Association for Dementia Studies are supporting the project with research into the impact of our websites on health and wellbeing. This research is being funded by Historic England to help understand the impact of heritage for local people. Please follow the links below to complete a short survey on each of the platforms:

Life Stories Herefordshire & Worcestershire feedback

Know Your Place Worcester feedback

To find out more about how to use the online resources, do visit our YouTube channel to access our video guides.

Virtual Time Travel Trail -Thursday October 27th, 6-10pm

We are pleased to announce that our Virtual Time Travel Trail will take place on Thursday October 27th, 6pm-10pm. Come along and see our fantastic historic photographs and memories from local people projected onto three external buildings around the City: The Commandery, St Swithun’s Church and corner of Cornmarket, as well as internal projections within some of our fantastic heritage buildings, including Worcester City Museum and Art Gallery, Tudor House Museum, The Greyfriars, The Infirmary Museum and Royal Porcelain Works. Historic buildings around the city will be open for the evening and there will be a chance to come along and see our 1950s High Street exhibition again at The Guildhall.

Projections are being created by the internationally-renowned Guildhall School of Music and Drama – it will be a spectacular event and an opportunity to hear the stories of local people as never before.

If you’d like to know more, please contact archaeology@worcester.gov.uk

Worcester Life Stories Workshop – 20th November

Its our 3rd Worcester Life Stories Platform Workshop!

The website will enable people to create & share their own life story. This could be movie or a book.

Accessible information on themes of interest will also be created e.g. sporting memories, nature. This will include images, written memories, audio memories and potentially videos.

We will be starting to show what the platform could look like and what should be included within the book. Currently people like a scrap book style.

Life stories are known to be beneficial across the lifespan. For it to be the best it can be, we need your feedback! Come and join us!

Please share widely. Anyone can join us and give feedback.

Know Your Place Worcester workshop – Friday 6th November

The second of our Know Your Place Worcester workshops will take place on Friday 6th November, 2.30-4pm.

We’ll be having a look at what historic information and resources you’d like to see made available via the platform, as well as the materials and guidance that will make it easier for you to access it. The workshop will be run via Webex, so please do get in touch to book your place and receive joining instructions.

Come along and help make this a fantastic resource for Worcester!

New Stories page!

A brand new page has been added to the website this week called Stories, and here we will be adding some of the amazing stories that local people have been sharing with us, The first is a particularly poignant one from the time of major slum clearances around the city. If you have any stories of Worcester that you’d like to share, we’d love to here from you.