Trust to research World War Two

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Heritage-Lottery-fund-logoHELENSBURGH Heritage Trust is one of the first groups in the UK to receive a Heritage Lottery Fund All Our Stories grant, it was announced yesterday.

The Trust's exciting project, "The Helensburgh Area in the Second World War", has been given £3,000 to record the memories of people who lived in the area during the war.

All Our Stories — a brand new small grant programme, launched earlier this year in support of BBC Two’s The Great British Story — has been designed as an opportunity for everyone to get involved in their heritage. With HLF funding and support, community groups will carry out activities that help people explore, share and celebrate their local heritage.

The popular series presented by historian Michael Wood and supported by a programme of BBC Learning activities and events got thousands asking questions about their history and inspired them to look at history in a different way through the eyes of ordinary people.

The programme and HLF All Our Stories has proved a real hit and now "The Helensburgh Area in the Second World War" is one of hundreds of successful projects around the UK to receive a grant.

Helensburgh Heritage Trust aims to promote a wider appreciation of the heritage and history of the area. The Helensburgh area played a major role during the Second World War, but much is now forgotten, while, because of wartime secrecy, other aspects are little-known and only now being made public. The objective of this project is to record the memories of people who lived in the area during the war.

TV presenter and historian Michael Wood, said: “We British love our history, and no wonder: few nations in the world, if any, have such riches on their doorstep, and so much of it accessible to all of us. It is really tremendous that the people of the Helensburgh area have been inspired to get involved to tell their own story and to dig deeper into their own past.

"It’s brilliant that so many people are being given the chance to get involved through the All Our Stories grants. Having travelled the length and breadth of the British Isles this last year filming The Great British Story, I am certain that fascinating and moving stories will be uncovered which will not only bring to life the excitement of local history, but will illuminate and enrich every community’s connection with the national narrative.”

Stewart Noble, chairman of Helensburgh Heritage Trust, said: "It’s great that we have been awarded this grant and we can’t wait to get started. Although the Helensburgh area did not suffer the destruction and damage that other parts of the country did, it nevertheless had several very important roles to play in the War.

"We are all really excited about telling other people about what we experienced here and sharing our heritage and history with them. But first we want to hear from local people.”

Colin McLean, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund Scotland, said: “Clearly the success of All Our Stories has reinforced the fact that we are indeed a nation of story tellers and that we want to explore and dig deeper into our past and discover more about what really matters to us. This is exactly what the grant will do for the Helensburgh project as they embark on a real journey of discovery.”