‘Extraordinary times’ to be remembered through Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar archive project

PUBLISHED: 17:08 25 June 2020 | UPDATED: 17:08 25 June 2020

An example of the type of memories to be sent in according to Hertsmere Borough Council. Picture: HBC

An example of the type of memories to be sent in according to Hertsmere Borough Council. Picture: HBC


Welwyn Hatfield and Potters Bar are set to remember these “extraordinary times” through an archive project.

Welwyn Hatfield Museums Service is looking for rainbow drawings, art, diaries, school schedules, letters from neighbours, friends and relatives, photographs and equipment that has been used to keep safe and is no longer needed along with objects and photographs relating to food parcels or other support you’ve received if shielding.

Potters Bar Museum is looking for how physical spaces have been transformed – from a bustling town centres to deserted streets – the effects on key and home workers and how children and young people are coping with the changes now that many schools are closed.

Welwyn Hatfield executive member for leisure, culture and communications, Cllr Terry Mitchinson said: “We’re living through extraordinary times – national lockdown, restricted movement and being apart from our loved ones. But these are also times of learning – using technology in new ways, bringing communities together and initiating rituals like clapping for our key workers.”

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Councillor Caroline Clapper, Hertsmere portfolio holder for leisure and culture, said: “Hertsmere residents, like millions of people around the world, have found new ways of coping with the altered life the epidemic has imposed. This is a major moment in our social history and our museums want to collect a range of objects, from clothing to hair clippers, from diaries to memes that reflect the physical and emotional response of the borough’s residents to COVID-19.

“Our museums strive to tell the story of their towns and its people. It is imperative to capture this time for future generations, to help us understand how this city dealt with an extraordinary situation.

“Remember, it’s not just old things the museums collect. As the situation with coronavirus continues to unfold, if you have any items you think might be of interest to reflect this time in our history, please keep them aside for our museums to consider.”

To make a donation, email museum@welhat.gov.uk explaining what it is and what it means to you, ideally including a photo.

Pictures, posters, stories and information on items you would be willing to donate can also be emailed to pottersbarmuseum@gmail.com.

Journals recording life as it has been through the pandemic can be anonymous and there will be an embargo period.

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