Our Rough Island Story

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2016ORIS18For Booklet of findings click the link

The lost stories of St Werburghs

This current project was commissioned by the Comunity Centre in St Werburghs and is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The centre has a First World War Memorial featured on the front of the building, of which they know very little about. The building was once a school so played an important role in the community.

In the light of the Centenary years of the First World War the Centre is keen to find the stories of the people who once made up the community.

I’ll be leading a team of Volunteers to supporting learning on how to research the names on the memorial and also finding out about the human stories, rather than just the stories of how  and where they died.

We will be involving local community groups as much as possible in thei project including the school.

To find out more please visit the Community Centre’s Website.

2016ORIS2Memorial at the Community Centre in St Werburghs installed in 1920.

2016oris5Team researching at the Bristol Records Office

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The Project has come a long way! The Volunteers have unearthed some excellent findings. We are begining to build a picture about the men, their lives, their families and the community of a Century ago. To find out more the team will be at various Community Events, lie the Arts Trail in St Werburghs do pop along to hear about their stories.

2016oris7Bristol Central Libray Introduction to their collection.

2016oris8Learning about a similar Project in St Pauls.

2016oris6Hearing about the Conscientious Objectors and anti war movement 100 years ago.

2016oris10Sharing our findings with neighbours and the research group.

2016oris14Harry Crates and his descendant.

2016oris11People were very interested in the maps that Dave Sheds Holden created for the project.

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2016oris13 Picnic in the Park 2016.

An important part of this project was to involve the pupils from the local Primary School. We gave a short presentation to the pupils about the memorial and the First World War. Then I helped the pupils to learn about the stories in the memorial through different art activities. We produced a book of pop up Illustrations and some banners with the soldiers names and lives. All the artwork was part of the Remembrance Service on 11th November 2016.

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2016ORIS22iThe Remembrance Service was such a success! Many of our neighbours and friends came to take part in something which the community hasn’t done for the past 80 years since the plaque was unvelied. People were so moved. 2016ORIS24 2016ORIS31

We were very lucky to have some brilliant musicians, Emmy Broughton on the harp. The audience were captured!

and Mark Stanley from the Fantasy Orchestra played us the Last post and a Reville.

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                               Roy Hackett and a Pupil from the School layed the wreath.

The Pupils sang a wonderful song called Dona Nobis Pacem which means bring us Peace.

2016ORIS30Derek Stanley wrote a poem based on the stories we have found about the men in the memorial, it was  adeeply moving reading!

Some comments from local people:

The Poet who performed at the Service will be visiting the school next year, he has given us a copy of the poem for the pupils to perform in the next assembly, they will each be able to recite the lines of the different soldiers.
The school would be privileged to lay the wreath again next year.
We look forward to working again soon!

We were so pleased that the pupils from the new school could help to remember these men, as they were alsopupils of the old school (now Community Centre) Such a lovely though, it was great for the children.

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A big hip hip hoorah  to the amazing work of all the volunteers and people whom helped and supported this wonderful and unique project, and another big thanks for the HLF for making this project possible.