Thursday November 23rd 2006
Two of our members were recently invited to talk to third year history students at the University of Gloucestershire about the Fairford Community Centre project and the formation of Fairford History Society.
Professor Tim Copeland, who was Heritage advisor for the project’s successful application to the Heritage Lottery Fund, invited Margaret Bishop, the project co-ordinator, and Geoff Bishop, leader of the FHS Oral History group, to talk to students who were examining different ways in which material becomes public history. They told students about the history of the building, opened in 1738, and its pioneer role in education, and about the Heritage Days held to interest the public in the project and Fairford’s heritage generally. The two Heritage Days produced a large amount of historical material and made it clear that there is a great deal of local interest in the history of Fairford throughout the ages, although much of it was previously unrecorded and unavailable. This led to the foundation of the Fairford History Society and the starting up of the Fairford Archive to ensure that our heritage is preserved and not lost over the years.
Extracts from oral History recordings illustrated the point that oral recording captures a different sort of history, with more human reactions, and gives a fuller picture than written records alone.