Carisbrooke Castle Museum holds a growing collection of oral histories, recording the stories of local people. Gathered through a number of different projects, these recordings are currently being catalogued into the museum’s permanent collection and in the future will be available to researchers and for use in exhibitions and other publicly accessible ways.
Island Carnival Memories
A collection of reminiscences, stories and photographs contributed by Isle of Wight carnival people in a fascinating Oral History project funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and delivered by The New Carnival Company in collaboration with InspirEd. It aims to share and celebrate the Island’s rich carnival heritage that has defined our popular culture for more than a century.
Out on an Island
‘Out on an Island’, supported by the National Heritage Lottery Fund and delivered by StoneCrabs Theatre Charity, explored 100 years on LGBTQ+ history of the Isle of Wight, focussing on the untold and often hidden heritage of the Isle of Wight LGBTQ+ community and working with people of all ages to highlight a section of history, largely ignored and often erased.
Newport Living History
The ‘Newport Living History’ project, supported by the Heritage Lottery fund and delivered by Newport and Carisbrooke Parish Council, has worked with local schools and sought people with experiences of living and working in Newport over the last century. This project has also included oral history interviews conducted by the 1st Carisbrooke (Princess Beatrice’s Own) Girl Guides, interviewing previous members of the company in a part of the project funded by the Lady Neville Charity.
Memories of the Sea
Part of the Down to the Coast project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and delivered by Carisbrooke Castle Museum in collaboration with InspirEd, ‘Memories of the Sea’ focussed on the landscapes and lives of people from East Wight, from boatbuilders, to coastguards, fishermen to harbourmasters these interviews are a unique insight into how Island lives have been shaped by the sea which integral to its heritage.
Another Down to the Coast project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and delivered by Carisbrooke Castle Museum in collaboration with InspirEd, ‘Farming Memories’ has resulted in a wealth of material relating to continuity and change in agriculture on the Isle of Wight since the Second World War. The interviews are a fascinating insight into the Island’s farming community over the past 70 years – people, places, events and day-to-day life. The recordings also capture the unique dialect and colloquialisms on the Isle of Wight, many of them linked to farming and the countryside.
Memories Matter – Intergenerational Oral History project
Funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Young Roots programme and delivered by Carisbrooke Castle Museum in collaboration with the Isle of Wight Council Heritage Education Service and InspirEd, the project enabled young and older people to come together through an intergenerational approach to oral history.
Funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Sharing Heritage programme and delivered by Carisbrooke Castle Museum in collaboration with InspirEd, the ‘Island Memories’ project gave Islanders the opportunity to have their memories recorded for posterity and to be added to the Museum’s collection of the social history of the Isle of Wight. In total 54 people were interviewed during the project – totalling over 100 hours of recorded testimony. Interviewees shared memories of their lives and experiences, of places and events of the Isle of Wight. The interviews contain much information about the towns and villages of the Island and the continuity and change over a century and have also captured the special and unique Isle of Wight dialect.