Exhibition to reflect on year of Covid-19 pandemic

Artwork produced by residents during lockdowns have been chosen to be part of history.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 10:00 am
One of the pieces of artwork selected for the exhibition.

Northumberland Archives teamed up with Northumberland County Council’s Discover our Land team to ask for people to submit things they had been making or writing during lockdown to keep them busy.

More than 150 entries were received including artwork, stories, photos and poems from all ages.

Now 25 creations have been chosen to take their place in history by being entered in the Northumberland Archives for future generations to see and understand how it felt to be living through the pandemic.

Stories, songs, diaries, poems and films have been included while Northumberland Archives is now in the process of adding the creations to its online catalogue as part of a special ‘Lockdown collection’.

They will also be available for people to view at the county’s archives centres once they re-open.

The remaining creations will be featured in an online exhibition on the Discover our Land website from Tuesday, March 23, the one-year anniversary of the first national lockdown.

One of the successful creations was a chain story written by 10-year-old Emily Goodfellow and her 8-year-old neighbour Alice Quarmby.

Emily, of Ovington said: “We decided to write a chain story in the first lockdown to keep ourselves busy

" It’s all about Alice, her younger brother and I travelling through time and having lots of adventures. I would write a page and then post through Alice’s door and then she would write one.

"It was really fun and was a nice way of keeping in touch when we couldn’t see each other.

“I’m so excited our story has been chosen and I can’t wait to go to the archives centre and see it in the collection.”

Another project was a film produced with a number of foster families in the county.

Liz Spaven, Senior Manager Children's Placements, at the council said: “We really wanted to capture the creative ways our foster families were staying positive throughout lockdown.

"This video shows a very small selection of their projects and activities.

"We are thrilled for the video to be included in Lockdown Stories as it also shows how our looked after children and their foster families play a huge part in helping other people in their communities.”

Coun Jeff Watson, cabinet member for the archives service at the council, said: “We wanted to be to capture how it felt to live through these times and the variety and quality of the entries we received was outstanding, everything from personal diaries to creative artwork and songs.

“It has given us a real snapshot into how our communities have been coping, it’s a first for the archives team to have been able to gather information like this at the time it is actually happening to preserve it for future generations.”

To view the online exhibition go to www.discoverourland.co.uk/lockdown-stories