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Former pit village going digital with new archive

Friday 03 August 2012

Members of the C3RI have joined forces with Castleford Heritage Trust to help community groups and individuals in Fryston, West Yorkshire, to create a new digital archive of memories, photographs and anecdotes.

And residents and former residents of Fryston, Airedale and Ferry Fryston are being urged to help capture, preserve and celebrate the area's industrial and social heritage at the first of three open days at the Phoenix Theatre, Airedale, on Friday May 11.

Organisers led by Professor Dave Waddington are hoping that the open days will help develop a number of future bids to the Heritage Lottery Fund, which, if successful, will enable local groups and individuals to transform their ideas into reality.

Professor Waddington said: 'The first objective is to engage local individuals and groups in the design and production of a digitally-based representation of the history of Fryston and the surrounding area, to which they can contribute their own memories, create and exhibit artefacts and hold online discussions with old friends and fellow community members.'

Professor Waddington, who is an ex-pupil of Airedale High School, added: 'For a village of its size, Fryston boasts a truly remarkable history.

'Part of this is tied in with its significance to the Iron Age and its relationship to Fryston Hall, which once played host to the likes of Charles Dickens, Benjamin Disraeli and Florence Nightingale.

'But there's another, arguably more fascinating, dimension which relates to the often untold acts of heroism and sacrifice, the times of austerity and tragedy, the fantastic sporting accomplishments, and the daily rituals and arrangements that formed the fabric of village life. And it's in this respect that we're keen to encourage the involvement of local people'.

Alison Drake, from Castleford Heritage Trust, added: 'This partnership can succeed in harnessing some extraordinary local knowledge into something more tangible and accessible for the benefit of current and future generations.'

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