Youth project aims to change negative perceptions of Rotherham
Historic England’s History in the Making programme will hand cash to 11 youth-led schemes across the north.
The grants aim to put young people’s voices at the heart of how we celebrate our past by using arts and culture to bring the tales to life.
Rotherham’s project is called Big History, Bright Future and will involve the creation of a mural with which the borough’s youngsters can connect.
Three paid apprentices will be hired to support the work, which will include outreach with Slovak and Roma communities.
Meanwhile, a filmmaker will help to capture the workshops and creation of this artwork while interviewing residents participating in the project.
And oral histories will become part of the Rotherham Archives collection at Clifton Park Museum.
The programme will be guided by steering group Imagine Rotherham, and follows consultation workshops involving 1,300 young people in Rotherham by the Children’s Capital of Culture project. The research showed that the young people felt the borough had a negative reputation despite many aspects of living here about which they were proud.
Other programmes to receive cash from the same fund include a celebration of women in Wakefield and an exploration of the former fire station in Hull which is now home to a long-running youth project.
Ellen Harrison, head of creative programmes and campaigns at Historic England, said: “These History in the Making grants really show the breadth of what heritage can mean to different communities and the range of creative ways we can form connections to our local heritage through place marking.
“These projects will improve young people’s wellbeing by encouraging a sense of pride in their local place and enabling them to gain new skills and confidence.
“It’s been fantastic to get the input of our young advisors to help us ensure we are funding projects that truly allow young people to lead and explore their local history.
“We can’t wait to see what they discover and how they decide to share and mark their heritage.”