Tag Archives: battle of the somme

Reference Remembrance

We have enjoyed a busy and eventful week since our last posting from South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre, (CHAC) near Yeovil.

The highlight has to be our screening of the Battle of the Somme Film at Yeovil Library on Friday 1st July 2016, the 100th Anniversary of the start of the Battle. Copies of the film were made by the Imperial War Museum for institutions to show free of charge to the public. The Library had kindly provided the top ‘Music floor’ for our use and a lap top and projector in order to show the film. The technical side was particularly appreciated as we had arranged a back-up plan with spare lap top and projector – only to discover at 11am that our computer did not have a DVD player!

Fortunately, all worked out well and we took our prepared board display with panels also provided by the Imperial War Museum to the top floor. Librarian staff helped us set up and around 25 members of the public came to appreciate the introduction to the film and the film itself. We were also grateful to our ‘lap top’ helper who reminded staff not to let the screen lock, as we would need the librarian to keep entering their password to unlock the screen for us.

The film is around an hour-long and most people stayed for the whole screening. We also appreciated the quietness of the library; as even with the telephone ringing and general visitors, we had very few interruptions. We also hoped the afternoon was useful for the library in helping to bring in more visitors that would otherwise not have come in.

Fundamentally, we thanked Yeovil Library for helping to provide us with the means to mark the 100th Anniversary of the Battle of the Somme in Yeovil with local people.

We are now considering other projects that could help CHAC and the Library, particularly in terms of increasing visitors and ‘usage.

Other interest was created by a visit from a gentleman and his wife to see the display of railway images we had previously shown in our Yeovil Library window display and a visit from a researcher interested in the Louisa Harris diaries – which we will report on next time.

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Visitors enjoying our display panels provided by the Imperial War Museum at our screening of the Battle of the Somme film at Yeovil Library on Friday 1st July 2016.

 

Display of Unity

A busy and involving week since our last posting from South Somerset District Council’s Community Heritage Access Centre, (CHAC) near Yeovil.

First and foremost in our minds is the 100th Anniversary Commemorations for the Battle of the Somme taking place today around the world. We are marking the milestone with a screening of the Battle of the Somme film loaned to us by the Imperial War Museum (IWM). This will take place at Yeovil Library on the top floor at 2.30pm with the kind assistance of Yeovil Librarians (particularly on lap top and projector duties!)

The official IWM Guide to the Film provides useful background context:

“The Battle of the Somme film is one of the most popular films of the First World War seen by over 20 million people in Britain at the time. These momentous audience numbers make The Battle of the Somme one of the most popular films in British Cinema history. The film marked a turning point in film making, being the first feature length documentary about a war, and changed the way cinema and film were perceived by society. In 2016, IWM will be making the restored version of the film available to members of the Centenary Partnership to screen in their venues to audiences all over the world.”

We are already fulfilling this aim, as several local community and history groups wish to screen the film as part of their regular meetings. Significantly, the hosts cannot charge an entry fee, but through the screening, CHAC hopes to let people know more about our service and role and also help Yeovil Library by simply prompting more visitors to come in and see what the library has to offer.

In addition to the film, we also have a static ‘panel’ display with historical information around the time of 1916 and related to the Battle of the Somme also provided by the Imperial War Museum.

We also helped Langport and District History Society with their ‘Pop Up Museum’ as part of the Langport Festival with the last day on Saturday 25th June 2016. We loaned three small, resin, sloping display cases as the main idea was for members of the public to bring in items related to Langport to show during the period of the Festival. This was an intriguing idea and school photographs proved a popular item to be brought in. Significant items from possibly Langport’s most famous name, the economist, Walter Bagehot, were also on display, together with projected images of Langport carnival.

More next time on our Battle of the Somme Screening.

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Assisting Langport and District History Society with their ‘Pop Up’ Museum with the loan of display sloping cases as part of the Langport Festival.

 

 

Discoveries and Battles

This week has been a week of discoveries, some good, some bad.  The only known photograph of the Railway Inn, Middle Street (not Hendford) was discovered in the collection.

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You can see The Railway Inn here on the left of the photograph, the photograph was catalogued as Middle Street with no further details given.  Staff and volunteers are currently going through the photograph collection to update the descriptions and to give more detail.

Staff were also asked if we had any photographs of the old Telephone Exchange, now Telford House in Clarence Street.  We discovered we had two, not very good ones, one of the Exchange in the distance when the site for Tesco’s was being developed in 1991 and one of machinery being unloaded just in front of it in 1970.  So if you have any photographs of the building we would be interested to hear from you.

Staff have also been organising a screening of the film, the Battle of the Somme, at Yeovil Library on 1.7.2016 in partnership with the Imperial War Museum.  It will take place from 2.30pm – 4.30pm, is free, on a first come, first served basis and toilet facilities are available.  Look out for further details in the press.

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