Wolverhampton City Archives has been awarded £7,000 for an oral history project that aims to capture the history of the city and its people.

‘Wolverhampton Voices’ will make oral history available to a wider audience by enabling the City Archives to explore ways its collections can be made more digitally accessible, alongside onsite access.

It will help the archival service become more representative of the communities in Wolverhampton.  

The testbed project - funded by the Archive Testbed Fund as part of the Collaborate and Innovate funding programme set up by the National Archives - will focus on 3 collections: the Black and Ethnic Minority Experience project (BEME), The Wolverhampton LGBT History Project, and The Way We Are: Women of Wolverhampton (WOW) project. 

Rather than oral history being a separate entity, this project aims for a more holistic approach, making the material fully integrated into everything the City of Wolverhampton Council does. It includes incorporating it into every exhibition and building it into work with schools and community groups.

Wolverhampton Voices will have a robust digital preservation strategy, giving confidence to future oral history projects that material can be deposited and heard for generations to come no matter what media they were originally recorded on.

The Council’s Cabinet Member for City Economy, Councillor Stephen Simkins, said: “I am delighted that Wolverhampton City Archives has received this funding to capture the voices of the city.

“The Wolverhampton Voices project will make a significant impact to the local communities of the city and ensure their stories are available for future generations.”

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