From August 2017 to March 2019, the Place, Work and Folk project captured a huge slice of the farmhouse and local people’s history in Bridgend. These were stories that might otherwise have been lost. It was an honour to work with around 25 extraordinarily dedicated and talented volunteers, and as many compelling and unforgettable interviewees, to record these magnificent stories and create a collective legacy to this community.
You can now read our Place, Work and Folk booklet here, listen to our interviews on SoundCloud at BridgendPWF and in our audio gallery, visit our wonderfully quirky mini museum and the stunning Timeline mosaic upstairs in the farmhouse, explore our growing vintage photos archive, view our films, and gain a strong sense of the local identity. We’ve held memorable gatherings and workshops throughout the project. We’ve worked with primary and secondary schoolchildren, older people, nearby and former residents, artists, storytellers (including some who don’t realise they are), musicians, local historians, heritage curators and librarians, students, retired and unemployed folk, professionals in health, community development, social work and education - but most of all, with Bridgend folk, both current and former, who have responded with greater generosity than we could ever have anticipated.
For many, we hear, our work has brought about a deeper sense of connection and community, and that means so much to us. You can see hear some of our participants’ reflections in this short video of our final celebration event.
I hope to stay connected with the Bridgend community, and I know that many history volunteers will want to stay involved here too. There is so much more history to be gathered, and there is a lot we didn’t have time to do. So if you have stories, memorabilia, film or photo material to share with us, it isn’t too late. Contact the farmhouse. And please visit the website and archives to make use of all we have gathered and created. It wasn’t only about the history – it’s about the roots that underpin and nurture new growth, as you can see in the restored farmhouse and its flourishing community today.
With thanks to our funders, the Heritage Lottery Fund, and to all of our partners, contributors and volunteers, too many to name here - our gratitude is never-ending, and so is the importance of this unique story.
Carol Stobie, Project Officer, Place, Work and Folk Project from 2017 to 2019.