Submitted by EmmaBrown on 16-11-2018 13:45:28
Winning a national award isn’t the goal of heritage projects, but when it happens you can't blame us for wanting to celebrate.
The fantastic 1,2 History Crew from Arbroath Academy, an after school youth group, took out the Best Contribution to a Heritage Project by Young People category at the Scottish Heritage Angel Awards.
They were recognised for creating the Arbroath Abbey Trail, an interactive treasure hunt designed to help other young people learn about the rich heritage of Arbroath.
The students designed seals related to the Abbey and other sites around the town which mattered to them including the harbour and Second World War drill hall. These seals were turned in to stamps which helped mark progress through the Abbey grounds and hidden in small boxes disguised as sandstone blocks. Inside these blocks were bookmarks featuring the students themselves in costume as historical characters at their favorite sites. Participants then followed the map to the next stop.
This project got the Crew thinking not only about the layout of the Abbey but the people from history who have called Arbroath home.
The story of the trail project roup also helped in making a film about the Trail and how they came up with the idea. The images of the young people in costume became part of the promotion for the Trail, used on banners promoting their work which were funded by Angus Council.
One of the great successes of the project was engaging the young people in the story of their town and in turn seeing them inspired to share that story with others in a way that was creative and interactive.
This project allowed the young people to focus on the parts of history that interested them and tell stories that would engage others.
Kaelyn from the 1,2 History Crew said: “The things I enjoyed about the project were making a Geo-Cache, finding out new facts about the places that I’ve been past but never thought about before and communicating with people I’ve never met before”.
Chiara Ronchini, Project Manager with Scotland’s Urban Past, said: ‘The 1,2 History Crew have been absolutely fantastic, from researching the history of Arbroath to designing the geo-cache trail. They demonstrated a huge interest in their own town and an outstanding amount of creativity. I’m delighted that their ideas and efforts, as well as the support given by both Scotland’s Urban Past and the HES Learning Team, were rewarded with this accolade. Very well deserved!’
Susan O’Connor, Director of the Scottish Civic Trust, said: “The judges were so impressed by the way the young people took the lead in developing, managing and presenting their project, not only to their school friends, but to the wider Arbroath community. They used their heritage as a way of connecting into their local identity, helping to make the past relevant and exciting for their locality. We can’t wait to see what they come up with next!”
With the Heritage Lottery Funded Scotland’s Urban Past project in its final year, the Arbroath Abbey Trail is a lasting example of what can be achieved when young people take the lead in creating their own heritage project.