The Heritage Council has announced that it will run an awards scheme for each county participating in National Heritage Week this year.
National Heritage Week will run from Saturday, August 15 to Sunday, August 23. To take account of restrictions on gatherings due to COVID-19, rather than focusing on the organisation of events this year, local heritage groups, families and communities are invited to develop projects around this year's theme of 'Heritage and Education: Learning from our Heritage'. All projects submitted will be considered for a National Heritage Week Award.
National Heritage Week Awards have been expanded this year to include an award for the best project in each county, including County Wicklow. Projects will be assessed on the basis of their local reach and community engagement, educational value and the level to which they involve different age groups.
So far for National Heritage Week in Wicklow, each group associated with 'Our Wicklow Heritage' will be curating additional and new content about their local people and places. 'Our Wicklow Heritage' is a new network of six community heritage websites sharing information about the natural, built and cultural heritage of County Wicklow.
They have created a platform through the network to promote the heritage recording efforts of local communities in County Wicklow, and the collections and activities of the council' archives, libraries, heritage and cultural services. 'Our Wicklow Heritage' consists of the County Wicklow Heritage website and five additional community heritage sites: Glens of Lead; Delgany Heritage Village; Medieval Bray Project; Donard - The Glen Heritage; and the Glendalough Heritage Forum. The sites are volunteer run and interactive, allowing visitors to contribute their stories, articles, photos, videos and audio footage.
Wicklow County Archives has commissioned twelve Wicklow historians to write about the War of Independence and Civil War years in the county. The organisers will have a virtual launch of this project during National Heritage Week. A selection of the articles from the heritage project will be uploaded to www.wicklowheritage.org.
Yvonne Whitty and the Preban Graveyard Group will be sharing the story of the graveyard. A two part documentary 'The Story of Preban Graveyard' debuted during National Heritage Week in 2014. Since then work at the graveyard has continued and Preban Graveyard Group will be producing an interactive story book along with an eight part podcast series in collaboration between Ireland's leading historical podcaster, Fin Dwyer (Irish History Podcast), public heritage specialist Damian Shiels (Shiels Heritage), and Wicklow archaeologist Yvonne Whitty for National Heritage Week 2020. The podcast series will highlight different aspects of the graveyards past and present
Together Apart is an online 'people's archive' of Wicklow Life during the Covid pandemic 2020, organised by the Wicklow County Council Heritage Office. During times of lockdown and restricted travel, many people found a comfort in heritage and the natural environment around. Some found more time to spend outside noticing nature, others took up new hobbies or renewed old ones. For many, even as restrictions have eased, daily lives remain altered. The project organiser set out to capture this by inviting Wicklow people to share their stories, poems, observations, artwork and photographs and have created an online archive to share these experiences and make a record of these unprecedented times for future generations.
Discovering the buildings Bray' is a digital project which will explore the history of buildings selected by Bray Cualann Historical Society. During National Heritage Week, one building a day will be showcased on the Bray Cualann Historical website, outlining the outstanding features of the building and its use since it was built.
Drawing on the knowledge of local archaeologist and historians, Save Wicklow's Ancient East's project will develop a 3D animation showcasing the early historical sites near Kilranelagh, West Wicklow. The final video will include drone and ground footage and old photographs.
A specific illustration depicting the Winter and Summer Solstice at Kilranelagh in West Wicklow will be created. Promotion of the project will include the sharing of an e-brochure shining a light on local pre-Christian sites, as well as promotion of the project on social media and a website.