We have now completed the first phase of a two year “Capturing the Past” project to train local heritage groups and others to be able to digitally store and make publically available on-line their archives. A local expert team has very successfully delivered this for us. We secured funded through a Heritage Lottery Fund grant as part of an exciting series of projects called “Stories in Stone” coordinated by the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust.
Many local groups and individuals in the area have already been trained to explore their local archive material relating to the history of local communities and their use and management of the landscape. Our project has equipped local people with the skills needed to assess and interpret these archives and to make them available through a bespoke website. We now hold a fantastic package of digitising and scanning equipment for local people and groups to use to scan and upload archives suchs as old maps, wills, letters and photographs. Staff at the North Yorkshire County Records Office have given excellent support to our project team of Ian Fleming, Wilf Fenten, Mike Slater, and Anne Webster.
Making the archival heritage available online is helping everyone – across the world – explore the fascinating cutlural heritage of the dales. A wide range of people including professionals involved in landscape interpretation, school teachers developing local history projects, members of local heritage bodies, visitors to the Yorkshire Dales, and people researching their own family history in the Dales are all making use of the thousands of archive resources already uploaded on to Dales Community Archives
The Capturing the Past project fits very well with our charitable objectives to conserve the cultural heritage of the Dales and with our educational role and we are really excited about delivering the project! We look forward to the next phase when we hope to secure further funding to roll out the training across the Dales.
The total award for the overall Stories in Stone project is over £2 million and covers 27 individual projects in the Ingleborough area of the Dales with the aim to conserve and restore some of our most important heritage assets. Other projects include the restoration of traditional farm buildings and dry stone walls, archaeological surveys of deserted settlements, woodland and limestone pavement restoration, and countryside management and heritage skills training for young people in the Ingleborough area.