Lockdown stories by local residents to be entered into the Northumberland Archives

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

Monday, 22nd March 2021, 4:46 pm

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, across the county.

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 this time.

An image from the Headways Art lockdown project.

The pieces include stories, songs, diaries, poems and films.

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 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 eight-year-old neighbour Alice Quarmby.

Emily, of Ovington said: “ 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, 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.”

Cllr Jeff Watson, cabinet member for the archives service, 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.

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