247 Magazine
No Comments


Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

The city of Plymouth is planning to explore its gay history over the next twelve months courtesy of the Plymouth Pride Forum, an independent voluntary organisation that campaigns for better support for Plymouth’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans communities. The organisation was set up in 1998 and aims to improve the lives of LGBT people within Plymouth by voicing their needs and identifying gaps in service provision whilst empowering them to become involved in community life and be consulted about the things that affect them.

The idea of the archive was born from the fact that much of Plymouth’s LGBT history is currently stored in the memories of the older proportion of our community and the plan is to take this opportunity to capture their memories and stories now. The forum aims to investigate lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history in Plymouth, in collaboration with the Plymouth and West Devon Record Office, and create an archive to access, frame and interpret Plymouth’s queer histories. With support and training from the records office, the forum volunteers will be working primarily as oral historians and community archivists. They will interview members of the LGBT community about their experiences in and concerning Plymouth, as well as collecting photographs and other documents and memorabilia while recording recollections of older members of the community who wish to share their memories of places, people and events.

With the aid of funding recently received from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the archive will form the basis of an exhibition in early 2012, at Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery. Volunteers will be offered the opportunity to help curate the exhibition and also create new materials, which reflect where our community is today and also how we see it developing in the future.

PPF are currently looking at setting up working parties for individual projects, which will contribute to the archive as a whole.

These groups will be concerned with

(i) formation of the online archive

(ii) photography

(iii) oral history recording

(iv) researching the city’s archives

(v) the exhibition

(vi) promotional material around the project and exhibition.

If you’re interested in finding out more about the forum please check out http://www.plymouthprideforum.org.uk and if you’d like to find out more about the archive project, or volunteer for one of the working parties, go to http://www.lgbt-history.prideinplymouth.org.uk/ or email directly to info@plymouthprideforum.org.uk