Garden blogs

People’s Collection Wales & Middleton Memories

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We are delighted to welcome Gruffyd Jones, People’s Collection Wales Field Officer, National Library of Wales to share with us the experiences from our recent and ongoing collaboration regarding the collation of memories and stories from our Middleton Memories Event & Exhibition.

 The People’s Collection Wales were very happy with an opportunity to support the Middleton Memories project in 2019, which was responsible for some exemplary work within the field of collecting through community engagement.

The interest which was generated within the local community led to some truly incredible stories which were not only appreciated and enjoyed by visitors and participants in the Memory Month itself, but which have now been published for posterity in the Regency Restoration account on PCW. A total of 170 images were published within 29 items, and since the memories have gone live a total of 1541 individual views have been registered within the account itself.

Not only is this collection important as a record of the fascinating story of the Middleton estate and area’s rich social history, but it also demonstrates how invaluable community engagement work is within any collection project.

Raising awareness and appreciation of social history within a community is one of PCW’s key targets, and the Middleton Memories project is a perfect exemplar of how this can be achieved and how history can be preserved in the process.

In September of 2019, the People’s Collection Wales participated in the International Conference of Museums (ICOM) 2019 in Kyoto, Japan, which was attended by 4,500 representatives of museums around the world.
Several of the conference’s sub-committees explored concepts relating to the development of collecting and preserving cultural content through community-based projects.

PCW staff were pleased to present 2 papers at the conference, which provided an opportunity to draw attention to the PCW model of collecting community-generated cultural heritage in Wales.
Attention was drawn to the Middleton Memories project in these papers, demonstrating how direct community engagement should lie at the heart of any archiving or history preservation work.

We look forward to supporting any future work with the NBGW, the Regency Restoration Project the staff, volunteers and public who participated in the Middleton Memories work.

The Middleton Memories Exhibition will be on display at Y Oriel Gallery from 30th November to 29th January 2019. Search Middleton Memories on People’s Collection Wales https://www.peoplescollection.wales/