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    Press release

    Hands-on History Day

    Press release - 27 Apr 2017

    Free hands-on history day on the Second Battle of Gaza, Saturday 29 April 

    The Forum in Norwich is currently hosting a special First World War exhibition entitled ‘Finding the Fallen: The Battle of Gaza’ to mark the centenary of the Second Battle of Gaza (April 1917).

    It commemorates soldiers who fought in the Norfolk Regiment and is an opportunity for visitors to reflect on the loss of 367 Norfolk soldiers and remember the sacrifices made by them 100 years ago. 

    As part of the exhibition, The Forum is running a free hands-on history day for all ages on Saturday 29 April from 10am – 4pm. Visitors can meet military historian, Neil Storey, handle WWI objects and uniforms and explore the stories and experiences of Norfolk soldiers. The event is free and no booking is required.

    Hundreds of men from the Norfolk Territorials fought and lost their lives at the Second Battle of Gaza in 1917. The exhibition shares information on how the Territorial Force soldiers were recruited, how the campaign in the Middle East impacted on the Norfolk Regiment and includes the work of students from Sheringham Woodfields, St. Michael’s C of E Academy-Kings Lynn and the Belfry CEVA Primary School in Overstrand.

    This exhibition and history day forms part of The Forum’s three year ‘Norfolk in the First World War: Somme to Armistice’ project honouring Norfolk’s WWI heroes. The project has been made possible thanks to funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

    Robyn Llewellyn, Head of HLF East of England, said: “We’re delighted that money raised by National Lottery players has enabled this project to share the experiences of Norfolk soldiers who fought in the Battle of Gaza and engage local people in marking this important centenary.”

    Following the exhibition at The Forum, The Battle of Gaza exhibition and an accompanying film will go on tour to schools and community venues around the county. As part of the project, a comprehensive programme to support schools to research their local soldiers from the First World War is being created by The Forum and will include touring exhibitions, a dedicated website, films, a learning pack and inset sessions for teachers. There will also be plenty of hands-on resources including costumes, objects and documents for schools across Norfolk to hire free of charge.

    The exhibition is open until Thursday 4 May 2017 in The Forum’s Gallery and inside the Norfolk & Norwich Millennium Library, 10am – 4pm daily.

    For further information and images please contact: Lindsey Roffe, Marketing Communications Manager at The Forum, lindsey.roffe@theforumnorwich.co.uk tel: 01603 727975.

    Notes to editors

    About the project:

    The Forum has received £90,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to deliver its three year project, ‘Norfolk in the First World War: Somme to Armistice’. The project remembers the men who fought and lost their lives in battle and the women who were either on active war service or remaining strong on the Norfolk home-front. The project focuses on the following strands:

    • The Battle of the Somme in 2016
    • The Battle of Gaza in April in 2017
    • First World War Women on active service in November 2017
    • First World War Women’s Legacy in November 2018
    • The 100th anniversary of Armistice Day in November 2018

    The Forum’s project shares the stories of our local heroes - both men and women – so their names, life experiences and sacrifices are acknowledged and remembered by new generations. Thanks to National Lottery players, the project will commemorate the lives of the fallen and those who returned via dedicated school and learning programmes, adult volunteer-led projects, public talks, events and exhibitions.

    About The Forum:

    • The Forum, in the centre of Norwich, is one of the UK’s most successful Millennium projects.
    • It’s a public building, open seven days a week, all year round (except Christmas Day and Boxing Day).
    • Everyone is welcome. Most of the public events, exhibitions and activities which take place at The Forum are free.
    • The Forum Trust is the independent, self-financing, charitable organisation which manages The Forum building.
    • It is responsible for The Forum’s continued development, growth and innovation.
    • The Trust works with many partners to ensure The Forum plays a valuable role in the community.
    • Details about the charitable ‘project purpose’ which under-pins The Forum are on the website  www.theforumnorwich.co.uk

    About the Heritage Lottery Fund:

    Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about - from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife. www.hlf.org.uk.  Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #HLFsupported