[original photo by Jeremy Segott via flickr]

History is, above all, stories about the past and the people who lived them. ‘Straeon o’r Ffrynt Cartref’ translated from Welsh means ‘Stories from the Home Front.’

The intent of the project is to share stories about charities and charity work in Cardiff during and immediately following World War I. These stories will be found by volunteers sifting through materials from cultural heritage institutions in Cardiff and putting them into context by creating a series of short films and other interactive media.

**We are currently looking for volunteers! Click here to read about the requirements and sign up!**

Wales played a distinct role in WWI and there are endless stories and memories that need to be remembered and shared. These stories include not only tales about Welshmen who died on the battlefield, but also those on the Home Front – those soldiers’ families, neighbours, and friends who had their own part to play in the war.

Local Heritage

The heritage focus of the project will be materials from the Home Front in and around the city of Cardiff. The project will aim to identify and record materials showing the implications of WWI on the people of Cardiff, especially those materials relating to charities and charity work that occurred in Cardiff during this period, as there is historical evidence that charities played an important role in relieving wartime and post-war distress when soldiers returned home.

WWI began a trend for voluntary and charity activity in Wales and Great Britain. Between 1916 and 1920, over 11,000 charities were registered in Great Britain, and many of these in Wales. These included the Cardiff Wounded Soldiers Extra Comfort for Christmas, Prisoners of War Fund, and the Welsh National Hospital. Charity work was also carried out to help aide Belgian refugees. 

The project will look at materials dated from 1914 until 1920, as to see through the duration of the war and the years immediately following war’s end. The geographic area will focus on the city of Cardiff and surrounding areas. An initial survey of material has been conducted and will focus on heritage material related to this subject found in Glamorgan Archives, Cardiff University Special Collections and Archives (SCOLAR), and the Cardiff Story Museum.

Collecting & Sharing Memories

A main component of the project is training volunteers to digitise historical records and objects. Volunteers will conduct archive research to identify and record photographs, documents, and other historical artefacts relating to charities and charity work in Cardiff during and after WWI.

These digitised materials will be used in a variety of different ways including videos, digital exhibits, digital collections, and will be uploaded to People’s Collection Wales. A digital heritage mobile station will also be available at certain events so that families can try their hand at digitising items themselves. If families have any memorabilia or artefacts they feel should be digitally preserved, they are welcome and encouraged to bring these items with them to the open day to be digitised.

[Photo by Jeremy Segrott, via flickr.com]

[Photo by Jeremy Segrott, via flickr.com]

Project Details

Straeon: Stories is a project put on by VCS Cymru and funded by HLF. It will run from February until June 2017.