Documenting Dissent: a community digital history project charting dissent and activism in the North West of England
Global Link was funded in 2013 by the Heritage Lottery to work with historians, schools and community groups to research and document the history of religious and political dissent in Lancaster, particularly in relation to Lancaster Castle. As a global education centre, we linked these distant struggles for social justice and human rights with more recent activism or with issues that resonate around the world today. Volunteers read, attended lectures and workshops, conducted interviews and undertook research visits to the Castle, Lancashire Archives and elsewhere, leading to the recording of oral histories and the production of written articles for the Documenting Dissent website.
Following the success of this first Documenting Dissent project, Global Link received further funding from the Heritage Lottery that allowed us to work with local volunteers to research and document more ‘hidden histories’ of dissent and activism in the North West. These projects have generated a variety of outcomes, including: stories of North West conscientious objectors as well as women and girls on the home front and in efforts for peace during World War 1; the creation of an LGBT town trail for Lancaster and Morecambe; and the mapping of movements for peace, internationalism and education for world citizenship during the interwar years
Documenting Dissent highlights the ways in which ordinary people from our region have contributed in often extraordinary ways to the historical struggles for peace, equality, human rights and social justice.
Our research volunteer, Zephyrine Barbarachild, recorded the following audio clip with her thoughts about the project.