A COMMUNITY group in Bedlington will be digging into its town’s past after it received a national lottery grant of £10,000.
Leading Link, in partnership with the Bedlingtonshire Development Trust, has become one of the first groups in the country to benefit from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s (HLF) All Our Stories grant, which launched earlier this year.
The group, based at the The Lodge in Ridge Terrace, will use the money to fund a project called ‘Bedlington Our Stories’, which will involve using all forms of media, exhibitions and performing arts to explore, celebrate and share Bedington’s heritage.
Leading Link manager Lyn Horton said: “It is a tremendous achievement to be one of the first groups in the UK to receive an HLF grant.
“After organising the Olympic torch parade and a diamond jubilee celebration in the town, attended by more than 1,000 local people, this project allows us to delve a little deeper into Bedlington’s history and find out a lot more about this fantastic area.”
All Our Stories was created to coincide with the BBC 2 series The Great British Story – A People’s History, written and presented by broadcaster and historian Michael Wood.
Leading Link and the development trust will be working with young people, local historians, Newcastle University, Ashington’s Woodhorn Museum and residents to produce a timeline and a ‘Pandora’s Box’ of historical content.
Three events celebrating Bedlington’s heritage are also planned for next year, when everyone will be encouraged to take part.
Ivor Crowther, head of the Heritage Lottery Fund north east, said: “Clearly the success of All Our Stories has reinforced the fact that we are indeed a nation of story tellers and that we want to explore and dig deeper into out past and discover more about what really matters to us.
“This is exactly what the grant will do for the Bedlington Our Stories project, as they embark on a real journey of discovery.”
Lyn added: “This project promises to be a fun, interactive and informative for all involved.”