Derbyshire young people's 400 creations during pandemic are saved for future generations in county's record office

Four hundred stories, poems, photographs, artwork, films, songs and music created by young people during the pandemic have been archived at the county’s records office in Matlock for future generations.

Monday, 6th December 2021, 1:34 pm

The project, Moments In Time, has been led by Cromford-based independent producing company Adverse Camber which teamed up with Derbyshire Virtual School and other Derbyshire organisations to work with care-experienced young people.

A giant artwork on a canvas made from 42 carefully stitched together disposable face masks has been created by Derby fine artist Carol Harries-Wood who was inspired by the young people’s work.

This artwork is on display during December at Wirksworth Library before moving to Ashbourne Library in January 2022 and then Belper Library in February.

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The early stages of the project included collecting reminscences from visitors to the Museum of the Moon art installation at Derby Cathedral.

A book and a film with highlights of the young people’s work and interpretations by storyteller Maria Whatton has been released on YouTube.

The project was originally launched as Moon Stories in September 2019 recording people’s memories of the 1969 moon landings as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations – including visitors to the Museum of the Moon art installation at Derby Cathedral.

However, when the pandemic hit early last year, the focus of the project shifted and the young people started exploring their own personal memories, experiences and feelings both before and during these unprecedented times.

Adverse Camber founder and producer Naomi Wilds said: “As the creative project developed, it became clear that young people’s experiences in the pandemic, and how our world views are changing, had a great deal of synergy with the momentous change represented by the era of the moon landings.

Artist Carol Harries-Wood artwork, made out of disposable face masks, is on show at Wirksworth Library throughout December.

“We hope that the archive and particularly the film produced from young people’s work will resonate with young people now and those who access the archive for many decades to come, potentially inspiring new creative work in the future.”

The young people worked with creative mentors from the Derbyshire Virtual School where spokesman Kim Johnson said: “This has been an amazing project for the young people, for their skills, confidence and understanding of the significance of their contributions to this extraordinary collective of culture and history.”

The project was funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund, Youth Music, Derbyshire Action Grants and Foundation Derbyshire and in partnership with Derbyshire Record Office, Amber Factory and Baby People arts organisation.