Joined Up bunting at Legacies of the First World War Festival in Cardiff

DMAG: WWI CODENAME JOINED UP

Anne Edwards (Joined Up museums support officer), Joanna Jones (DAD director) and artist Rosie James, who led the Joined Up stitching workshops at the 10 Joined Up museum and heritage sites in Dover District, attended the Legacies of the First World War Festival: Voices of Peace? in Cardiff on 5 & 6 July 2019. 

It was organised by Dr Nicola Gauld, Coordinator for Voices of War and Peace: the Great War and its legacy, based in the library in Birmingham. www.voicesofwarandpeace.org

The Arts and Humanities Research Council set up 5 Engagement Centres in 2014 based at Universities across the country. Gateways to the First World War was based at Kent University https://www.gatewaysfww.org.uk. Sam Carroll, as Gateways Officer, helped the community groups to access the expertise across all the centres and academics at Kent provided a series of public research opportunities.

Pupils from Cardiff West Community High School were performing as we arrived at the Temple of Peace after a nine-hour drive from Dover. This was followed by a very powerful and moving performance by the Annapurna Dance Company, Soldiers of the Empire, which ended with all performers, school pupils and audience dancing together.

The next morning in the Awen Bar of the Wales Millenium centre in Cardiff Bay, some of the the Joined Up legacy bunting from East Kent Railway, The Dover Transport Museum and Deal Town Hall  was on display while Rosie James led a bunting stitching workshop.

Rosie James said: It was so interesting to talk with participants of the bunting workshop, some of whom learnt new ideas and techniques which they will use in their projects working with kids in schools in Birmingham. I hope to keep in touch with them and see what they do! It was also so nice to see the bunting from the DAD project again, I had forgotten how beautiful it was and how much work had gone into it!

In the afternoon Anne Edwards and Joanna Jones presented  ‘Legacies of the Joined up Project’: the digitalisation, visitor survey analysis, the final artists works for each museum or heritage site that have been accessioned into the collections and the Legacy website with information about the projects, the artists and the participating hosts http://artistsww1.uk

At the Closing panel discussion that included Sam Caroll the Gateways Officer and was chaired by Gethin Matthews, Living Legacies, one of the key points of discussion was how we can make sure the digital resources from the amazing and wide ranging WW1 projects that were part of the programme can remain  hosted and available now that the projects are completed and the funding spent. This is a key concern for http://artistsww1.uk that DAD are at present hosting and are looking for a long term solution to.

Anne Edwards said: access to the ‘Gateways’ programmes provided many exciting events and training at the British Library and National Archives at Kew and provided participants with new skills. I hope it will be possible for the University to continue this programme for joint benefit.

Joanna Jones added: We were delighted by the opportunity to present the legacies of ‘JoinedUp’ within a programme of other inspiring  and unusual WW1 projects. We were also delighted to have had an opportunity to visit the city of Cardiff where everyone we encountered was friendly, helpful and charming.