Local History Café
A group of people are sat in Charnwood Museum drinking tea, eating cake, looking at and talking about the books they read when they were children. They have just heard from Wim Van Mierlo of Loughborough University about the growth and success of Loughborough's own Ladybird Books.
This is their Local History Café, a community based scheme that brings together local people aged 50 and over to experience and talk about their local heritage.
The idea comes from Leicestershire based social enterprise Crafting Relationships (formerly Beauty and Utility Arts) who work with other community based organisations to help people at risk of loneliness and social isolation, using their interest and curiosity about their local heritage as a way of bringing people together, and allowing them to learn more and share their own stories.
Crafting Relationships work with heritage sites who also benefit as the Cafés bring in more visitors who have experiences and tales to share, which adds to the sites own collections. All the heritage sites taking part have access to a blog space and social media, and a big part of the project is getting different venues and communities talking to each other about what they are up to and seeking to inspire others.
Local History Cafes take place each month for about two and a half hours, currently meeting at Erewash Museum, Charnwood Museum, the Sir John Moore Foundation in Appleby Magna, Coventry Priory Visitors Centre, Brackenfield village and Melton Carnegie Museum. At least one more Café is planned in the East Midlands in the next 6 months.
More information on Local History Cafés and the nearest one to you can be found on the Crafting Relationships website (below)