Celebrating peace through the restoration of a significant
First World War memorial window
ORAL HISTORY PROJECT BRIEF
The project is centred on St Pol de Leon church at Paul, a Grade I Listed church near Penzance, in Cornwall. The church was founded by the Celtic Saint Paul Aurelian in the 5th century, with most of the current building reconstructed around 1600 after the considerable damage to the church by the Spanish attack in 1595; in the north aisle can be found ‘scorched’ stone pillars dating from the 12th century that survived the Spanish raid. Some Norman traces have been found under the floor of the church.
The focus of this project is the very fine First World War memorial East Window, erected in memory of William Torquil MacLeod Bolitho who fell in action at Chateau Hooge during the second battle of Ypres in May 1915. The window was designed by Robert Anning Bell, a leading member of the Arts and Crafts Movement and it is unique in using the subject of Sir Galahad as its main feature and on its emphasis on the personal history of its dedicatee.
Other features of interest in the church include a number of memorials, including the Solomon Browne memorial remembering the crew of the lifeboat lost in December 1981, and there is a strong theme of sacrifice for the wider community. The monument to the Three Johns in the South aisle, recounts the tragic loss of John Badcock, John Bryant and John Pearce who were members of a Missionary Band to Tierra del Fuego; the whole party perished for want and exposure. Outside the church can be found the memorial to Dolly Pentreath, probably the last known monoglot speaker of Cornish.
Acoustically, the church is one of the best in West Cornwall and so is regularly used for musical concerts by organisations such as the IMS and Mousehole Male Voice Choir.
The immediate need for the project is the preservation of the memorial window which is a poor condition and makes the project time critical. The longer-term need is to safeguard the other heritage connected to the church through developing facilities and infrastructure offering a sustainable future.
To work alongside a group of volunteers for 6 months providing a series of coaching sessions covering the various stages of creating oral history, what it entails (i.e. permissions, licensing, editing etc.) and to start collating oral history and digitising archival material, for a resource to use in future activities and accessible via the website. Archive to be shared and explained during project final celebration event. Aim to build a basic collection of oral history archive about people’s experiences with war/conflict, their connection with the church’s heritage and other aspects of community life in Paul.
The work should be based on a variety of themes, looking at several of the memorials, the focus being on people and place.
Regular worshippers and church volunteers, local residents, regular hall users, holiday makers, military veterans and special interest groups.
Benefits for People
New opportunity for volunteering will attract more people to volunteer from the wider community (i.e. non- church goers). People will have developed new skills that will have lasting impact beyond project life. People will be motivated to continue collecting in accordance with good practice. Participant’s memories and contributions will be better captured and shared with others. More people will be involved and interviewees will have increased self-esteem by feeling their memories are valued and will be drawn into the project.
Outcomes for Paul Church
A collection of resources both hard copy and digital to be accessible to a wide range of users and presented in a sympathetic way to the fabric of the church. Use of innovative and creative methods of sharing oral history.
Outcomes for HLF
The heritage of the church is better managed, in better condition and better interpreted, explained, identified and recorded. More people will have developed skills. Wider range of people will have engaged with the heritage. More people will have volunteered. People will have had a memorable experience. Our community will be a better place to live.
Participation Officer (2 days) to facilitate. Volunteer Coordinator (4 days) to manage alongside professional
Targets and Measures of Success
20 half-day sessions for volunteers. Group of trained Oral history volunteers meet regularly. At least one visit to an existing archive, digital database set-up, at least 5 interviews completed, increased number of volunteers, positive participant feedback.
Methods of Evaluation
Number of volunteers on register and in attendance of workshops; digital resources present; feedback report from archive visit; surveys.
Please submit your application by 22nd October 2017 to Rev. Andrew Yates at email@example.com.
Please include a detailed budget, examples of other projects you have worked on and contact details for 2 references.
If you have any further questions please contact Sarah Stevens at firstname.lastname@example.org, Mob: 07928 595528