On-line path to coalfield history

Contributed by editor on Nov 26, 2004 - 08:54 PM

A major initiative to preserve the heritage of the Kent Coalfield is busy digging into a vital part of the history of the local area - and is using hi-tech solutions to record and store a unique record of memories and information from the community.
The Coalfield Heritage Initiative in Kent (CHIK) project, which is led by Dover Museum, was set up earlier this year to record and celebrate the area's mining heritage through the preparation of a community archive. This is being put together from a variety of sources, including photographs, documents, text stories, oral reminiscences and video clips. The scheme aims to provide a 'virtual museum' of life in the Kent Coalfields through CD-ROMs and the Internet.
A number of community groups have been set up to enable research to be locally based, and the project held its first training workshop o­n Saturday (20th November) at the Hersden Neighbourhood Centre. Community Archive volunteers from the coalfield communities at Deal (Betteshanger Colliery), Elvington (Tilmanstone Colliery) and Hersden (Chislet Colliery) attended for a full day's training in using the project's software and computer equipment.
Each Community Archive group will collect photographs and oral reminiscences from its area and produce them as CD-ROMs and as part of an Internet 'virtual museum'.
The CHIK project is based at Dover Museum and is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Single Regeneration Budget, Dover District Council, Deal Town Council, Aylesham Parish Council, Furley & Page Solicitors and Unison.
For more information about the CHIK project, or to get involved in the production of this important community archive, please contact Mark Frost at Dover Museum o­n (01304) 201066.