The Heritage Lottery Fund has made available a great deal of money for preserving essential local, national and international heritage icons in the UK. We often hear about the artefacts and buildings used for essential repairs, conservation and maintenance. Now though, a St Helens Photograph Project will receive lottery cash too. The town’s library service recently accepted a grant of nearly £70,000 for their proposed project called “St Helens Through The Lens: The Jordan and Metcalfe Photography Collection”. The money will be used to encourage residents to examine the local heritage through a collection of historic photo negatives that will be digitised over the coming months.
In 1984, employees of the St. Helens Local History and Archives Library found a collection of nearly 4,000 glass negatives documenting local history; over 3,000 were intact and usable, a substantial number. The shop had previously been a photo studio but was a pet store at the time.The St Helens Photograph Project is tasked with digitising the entire collection to preserve the images for future generations and local historians to enjoy. The entire collection, when completely digitised, will be made available to the public – but it won’t be a passive service as more is planned.
The St Helens Photograph Project – A Call For Help
The money for the St Helens Photograph Project will not just be for digitising; it will also be used to set up creative courses and workshops for the older residents of the town, to attempt to engage them with the content and jog memories to identify the people and places. They already have a plan in place and an artist will help with the local engagement project to inspire the community to engage with their history. It is this sort of good work that is a vital part of the National Lottery today.