Remembering the Baa-Baas Games

Fans at the Barbarians Game, Dec 1988 (Image courtesy of Leicester Mercury at the University of Leicester)

Are you a Tigers fan with memories, photos, films and memorabilia of the annual Barbarians game? Did you go to the game every year with your family? Or work at Welford Road when it was played?

We need your help!

We are creating a digital time capsule of the Tigers vs Barbarians games and want to gather as many recollections and materials as possible. Come along to our workshops, where you can:

  • Explore the history of the Baa Baas game with other Tigers fans

  • See historical photos from the Leicester Mercury archive and help enrich them with stories and information

  • Bring your photos, films and memorabilia to be recorded, digitised and added to the time capsule

We are running three casual drop-in workshops – pop into whichever one you can make for however long you can stay.

Date: Tuesday 18th March 2014

Times:  12pm – 2pm; 4pm – 6pm; 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Location: Soft Touch Arts Centre, 50 New Walk, Leicester LE1 6TF

Refreshments will be provided.

If you have your own personal collection of photos, films or memorabilia about the Baa Baas, do bring it along to share.

If you have any queries, please email

The pilot project has been delivered through the Collaborative Arts Triple Helix Project, a research project by the University of Birmingham in partnership with University of Leicester. The Collaborative Arts Triple Helix Project has been funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as pat of their Creative Economy Knowledge Exchange programme.

Historypin, Narratively, and Hidden Histories

We’re excited to team up with Narratively this week for their series on Hidden History.  Narratively is a new take on in-depth reporting, journalism, and storytelling; and we love how they’re pulling together archival content, interviews, and research into compelling narratives around the Hidden History theme.

For us, Narratively represents the kind of creativity that’s empowered by the sharing and discovery of all kinds of historical content, and the kind of innovation enabled by openly licensed historical assets.  It also speaks to the power of asking a few more questions about what was here before, or what’s the story behind this photo, or what was it like for you then.  What mysteries wait to be revealed in that box of photos in your grandma’s closet, or on your neighbor’s wall?

So check out these fascinating stories on Narratively, and share your own hidden histories at Historypin–you never know where that may lead!

Great community sessions in Swindon

We had another couple of great community sessions collecting photos, stories and memories for our Remember How We Used To project, this time in Swindon.

First up was npower HQ with staff sharing their personal and local history.

The highlight for many of our team was a lively debate over the location of a particular power plant in an old photo, which many expert minds in the room could shed some light on, showing how much interaction, debate and enjoyment can come from crowdsourcing information about content.

Next up was a session at Tregoze Primary School.

60 students from Year 5 and Year 6 pupils brought in photos of weddings, births and various celebrations ranging from the 1940s to today and told each other the stories behind them.

Claire Bowen, assistant principal at the school, said: “The children had to speak to their families and neighbours about the stories behind the photos. The children and teachers [then] spent the afternoon sharing memories of the past. They had photos of their grandparents and family celebrations from years ago. Some children brought pictures of when they were born in hospital with their mums and dads, which was really nice.”

South Swindon MP Robert Buckland, also visited the school to take part in the workshop.

Miss Bowen said: “It is a whole different way of remembering the past. They had to talk to people about their photos and find out the stories behind them and then recount the story as they heard it. They were so enthusiastic about sharing their stories.”

Clare McDougall, head of community and education at npower, said: “By asking the children to speak to their families to learn more about how they grew up, we hope that their imaginations will be sparked and they’ll want to know more about life 60 years ago.”

To explore the archive and add contributions go to



Storytelling and mince pies

Mr. and Mrs. Buckel come prepared with a whole album of photo memories to share with our Exec. Director Nick Stanhope

Yesterday we hit the road and went to Didcot, Oxfordshire to gather stories and photos for ‘Remember how we used to’. We were guests at npower’s annual Christmas lunch for former employees, the perfect place to find stories and memories.

A former npower employee shares vintage photos and memories with us

Everyone was eager to share their memories with us, and came prepared with photos, old newspapers, brochures, and even paintings! With over 100 people there was endless  reminiscing about the good ol’ days and catching up with old friends.

Together with our super npower volunteers Sunita, Liz, Emma and Trisha, we had a really fun-filled afternoon collecting photos and stories. From miners’ strikes to family open days at the power station, from local coronation parties to proudly appearing in the npower newsletter, these garrulous retirees remembered how they used to work, play, celebrate and more.

Old friends catch up before Christmas lunch

We loved hearing these stories first-hand and as an added bonus we also got to share in a wonderful Christmas lunch, complete with Christmas crackers and mince pies. A lovely time indeed!

We will be adding the photos and stories we collected to ‘Remember How We Used To’ and blogging about the best of them, so watch this space. And over the coming months we’ll be holding more sessions like this with community groups  and schools around the country.

Visit the Didcot Retirees Channel to see the great photos and stories we collected.

If you have photos and stories to share about how we used to cook and clean, watch and listen, work, play, keep warm and celebrate, add them to the project here.