Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Gardens and commemorating the First World War

Given the vast numbers of people who were involved in the First World War, most of us have a personal link to the events of 1914-18. Certainly, every village, town and county has a story to tell - and so do our gardens. As the four years of Commemoration approach there are plenty of opportunities to do some research and to share what we find.

The Imperial War Museum is leading the First World War Centenary Partnership - a network of cultural and educational organisations. At the moment, the Museum itself is only partially open while the new First World War galleries are prepared, but the website is up and running - .  Have a look and see whether there are any opportunities for your County Gardens Trust to get involved.
(copyright Liz Ware)

During 2014, an exciting exhibition at The Garden Museum  will uncover some of the stories that have been overlooked by military histories. Russell Clark, Curator of Exhibitions, is collecting material that explores the role of gardening during the First World War. What, for example, was the impact on large estates and designed landscapes as the men who worked in them went off to fight? How were the lives of the women who replaced them transformed? It will tell the little known stories of the Trench Gardens and of the men who grew flowers and vegetables at the Front. If you have stories, objects or photographs that would help, then please get in touch with Russell at the The Garden Museum.

If you are interested in researching or caring for war memorials, English Heritage has a useful pdf on its website that will help:

If you find a subject worth researching, or an educational project that you would like to run, how will you fund it? The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) is making £1m available for each year of the Commemoration to fund projects relating to the war. They say that the application procedure is quick and straightforward, so why not have a look -

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