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Heritage digitisation project commemorates the 100th anniversary of the First World War

Rotherwas munitions workers, letters home from soldiers and adverts to send cigarettes to the troops; these are just a few of the thousands of First World War images that will be digitised and made accessible to everyone.

A new project, Herefordshire in the Great War: telling the story 1914-18 will explore life in Herefordshire during the First World War. Supporting this will be the digitisation of unique local material including newspapers, photographs, burial records, letters and diaries which are currently dispersed throughout the county.

This material will be brought together for the first time in one on-line database with a special website creating a lasting digital resource which will make this material available to everyone and preserve it for future generations.

People across Herefordshire and beyond will have the opportunity to take part in the project by volunteering and providing their own stories and memorabilia. Local history groups are also getting involved in researching their local communities.

Exhibitions, events and talks take place across the county in 2014 to commemorate the 100th anniversary and will include discoveries made during the project alongside rarely seen material from the museum, archive and library collections.

Herefordshire Council has received £69,100 from Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) in support for the project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the First World War.

Councillor Harry Bramer, cabinet member for contracts and assets, said: "We are extremely delighted to be awarded this money by the Heritage Lottery Fund. It will allow us to embark on this project in order to make resources available to museums and archives more accessible to everyone.”

Reyahn King, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund West Midlands, said: “As public interest in the First World War increases with the approaching centenary, this project will ensure that a wealth of information is made widely available by conserving original documents and newspapers, many of which have become too fragile to handle. The history of how the war affected the lives of people from Herefordshire will be made available online to a worldwide audience.”

For more information about the project, contact Sarah Chedgzoy on 01432 260731 or schedgzoy@herefordshire.gov.uk.

Tags: Community and living