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National Lottery funding boost for Local History collection
Gateshead Council has secured nearly £500,000 National Lottery funding to improve access to the unique local history collection held at Gateshead Central Library.
£499,200 of National Lottery funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) will improve and extend visitor facilities, creating a new space to be known as the Gateshead Archive. The significant collection of books, maps, newspapers and images charting Gateshead's history will be simple to browse and new touchscreen terminals will give people the opportunity to delve further into the archive. The funding will make it easier for people to research their family tree or the history of their house, street or town.
Throughout the 18-month project, which starts in January 2019, there will be a programme of activities to celebrate local history. From a Gateshead community history festival to a touring exhibition, from an historic drama to creative workshops there will be something for everyone to take part in.
Councillor Angela Douglas, Cabinet Member for Culture, Sport and Leisure, said:
"We're delighted to have secured this National Lottery funding to improve access to our extensive local history collection. Gateshead Central Library has an amazing collection of unique and rare treasures and this funding will help to make these materials much more accessible.
"This project will not only make resources more freely available but will also introduce improved study facilities to support research and there will be activities to encourage schools and community groups to use the collection. I'm sure the Gateshead Archive will quickly become yet another fantastic reason to visit Gateshead Central Library."
Ivor Crowther, Head of HLF North East, said: "Thanks to National Lottery players, this project will transform the way people can explore nearly 400 years of their history and unique stories - from census records showing how the community has grown and changed to maps of the First World War refugee town in Birtley."