History in the making with Esk Valley film

Debbie Swales with the living memories film making team at the Bradbury Centre''w134614
Debbie Swales with the living memories film making team at the Bradbury Centre''w134614

Memories of the past in the Esk Valley are about to be brought to life with a film project which is being made possible thanks to a grant.

It has been awarded to Esk Moors Caring by the North York Moors National Park.

It is hoping to encourage older members of the community in Castleton, Danby, Westerdale and Commondale to share old photographs and memories of the local area with the wider community.

Three local events will be held in the Esk Valley area where local people will be encouraged to bring old photographs of local people and places and talk about them.

Secondly, some filming will be taking place in Castleton and Danby schools giving pupils the opportunity to ask questions of former pupils to find out what school life used to be like and it is also hoped that pupils who attended before 1960 can be tracked down.

The third event will be a Michael Parkinson style chat show evening at The Bradbury Centre where a selection of people will talk about photographs and the stories that surround them with a collection of photographs being projected on to the ‘big screen’.

If people are unable to make it to the events to pass on their stories and memories then it may also be possible to set up some home visits.

Material from the events, videos, interviews and photographs will then be used to establish a permanent archive of the local history and cultural heritage of the area from the perspective of local residents.

It will be shown as a film at a red carpet style event in February and an exhibition of the most interesting photographs will also be created and put on public display at the Bradbury Centre.

In the meantime lots of volunteers are being asked to get involved to help with collating photographs, carrying out research and planning, starring in the film or even just making the tea.

Local businesses who have pledged their support so far includes: Dragon Films, The Flying Theatre Company, Pete

Mernagh Photography, Montage Gallery, Castleton Tea Rooms and the Stonehouse Bakery.

Debbie Swales from the project said: “After lots of planning and research by our devoted film team volunteers we are very excited about the start of the actual filming. Having a film at the end will be great but the process is equally important – developing strong relationships across the community.”