Middlewich Heritage Trust has received a National Lottery grant of £9,200 for a project ‘Middlewich and the Great War Centenary’. Awarded through the Heritage Lottery Fund’s First World War: then and now programme, the project will focus on learning opportunities for schools and our community, a reprint of the Roll of Honour, development of a town trail and webpages and development of a remembrance garden.
After community consultations we decided to run a series of events and learning opportunities that best shared our heritage and new understanding of the Great War.
For Remembrance Day we will reprint the Middlewich Roll of Honour, a document produced by the Urban District Council that listed serving personnel, their achievements and the fallen. New research showed the list was not complete; this has now been cross-referenced and re-typed. This research was behind the unveiling of the 14 additional names on our war memorial.
We will produce a trail leaflet to tell the story of Middlewich itself during the war, sharing families' memories and research, using photographs and documents acquired.
School groups are encouraged to contribute some art and written work for the project; this in turn helps teachers and pupils to learn more about Middlewich history through the stories of people involved and actions at particular key locations. The Trust has teamed up with the Royal British Legion, Middlewich Branch and are busy delivering school sessions leading up to Remembrance Sunday.
We will also be designing webpages with maps, documentation and images sharing the journey of our researchers as they uncovered the stories of WWI in Middlewich.
Finally our aim is to produce a permanent remembrance garden at the ICI Brooks Lane memorial with an opening event in July 2019, the centenary of the UK-wide peace celebrations. Local people and schools will work together with a designer to produce a garden design that reflects our Great War story.
Commenting on the award, Kerry Kirwan, Heritage Development Officer said: “We’re delighted that we’ve received this support thanks to National Lottery players; it means so much to have the opportunity to commemorate such a traumatic period in our town’s history. We owe so much to these people, even one hundred years on. Through this project we connect our modern-day community to the various local stories and events of the past that not only shaped our town but the country as a whole.”