Army wives in Catterick Garrison encouraged to look to the past and to share their own experiences in a museum project

A MUSEUM is holding a series of workshops to explore the experiences of army wives over the past 150 years.

The Green Howards Museum, Richmond, is currently undergoing a refurbishment, but staff are running a project with women in Catterick Garrison with Birth and Beyond Community Supporters, and National Childbirth Trust.

The project is part of the Redeveloping the Green Howards Museum project, supported by a £974,000 Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

The women who take part in the sessions in May will use original objects from the museum’s collection, as well as archive letters, photographs and diaries before sharing their own stories and taking part in a range of interactive activities.

Community liaison officer Virginia Arrowsmith will encourage the women to investigate the similarities and differences in the lives of women separated by generations, but linked by the profession of their husband or partner. The project will explore the experiences of army wives during three conflicts over the last 150 years in the Crimean War and both World Wars, and will culminate in a film.

She said: “What I find so moving is that while some aspects of women’s experiences of military life have changed dramatically over this period, other aspects of their lives as the wives and partners of soldiers have barely altered in 150 years or more. “For example, while technology makes communication between service families much easier nowadays, the challenges of long periods of separation and bringing up the family alone, remain.”

The project will run between Tuesday, May 6 and Thursday, May 8 at Dales Youth Centre and St Aidan’s Church Hall, in Catterick Garrison.

To get involved call 07720-087912 or email vivienne.schwartzberg@nct.org.uk or Virginia.arrowsmith@greehowards.org.uk 01748-826561.

For more information about the Green Howards Museum visit www.greenhowards.org.uk

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