Dr Blighty Brighton Festival lunchtime event (Free)

Strike a Light is organising this free lunchtime event for the Dr Blighty project, Brighton on Thursday 12th May 12-1.30pm (with thanks to Brighton and Hove Libraries and Information Service for their support)

Poster DB-2Dr Blighty Brighton Festival lunchtime event (Free) –

Talk and Q & A with Artistic Director of Nutkhut, Ajay Chhaabra who discusses Dr Blighty, an ambitious new project inspired by an untold story of the First World War, remembering an unexpected episode in Brighton’s history when the Royal Pavilion Estate became a military hospital for wounded Indian soldiers.

Author of new novel Belonging, Umi Sinha will read from the book moving from the darkest days of the British Raj through to the aftermath of the First World War. The story is a compelling and finely wrought epic of love and loss, of race and ethnicity, of homeland – and of belonging.

This will be followed by an author book signing.

All welcome

Free, Jubilee Library, 12-1.30pm
Thursday 12th May 2015

This is a lunchtime event and the library cafe will be open for lunches and refreshments at the same time.

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DR BLIGHTY – ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS

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Strike a Light is engaging with community groups across the city to promote the project, research this period of history and gather information, meeting with key WWI projects including Gateways to the First World War and East Sussex in WWI.

We are setting up free creative and heritage activities with groups such as the Black and Minority Ethnic Elders, alongside Indian themed activities with artist Jane Lyster, setting up public talks with Co-Artistic Director Ajay Chhabra of Nutkhut, and attend Dhavinder Dhillon’s plaque unveiling, which honours Subedar Mir Dast, a Indian soldier who received the Victoria Cross, at the Indian Gate by the Royal Pavilion.

Events are being planned currently, so do follow our blog for further updates. 

Dr Blighty outreach workshop dates with Strike a Light – Brighton and Hove

  • Brighton and Hove Hindu Women’s Group – Wednesday 20thApril (2pm)
  • Memories Past Group – Tuesday 3rd May (2pm)
  • BME Elders session – Thursday 5th May 12pm.
  •  Metamorphosis Art Group – Friday 6th May (2- 3pm)
  • Gujurati Cultural Group – Tuesday 10th May (8.30pm).
  • Brighton and Hove U3A session (with Jo Palache of Brighton Museum) – Wednesday 11th May (2.30pm). Venue: Jubilee Library, Jubilee Street, Brighton, open to all

 

Diya making Artists workshops 

  • Brighton and Hove Hindu Women’s Group – Wednesday 27th April (2pm). 
  • Jewish Care dementia session – Thursday 5th May (3-5pm).
  • BME Elders session – Thursday 12th May (12pm).
  • Brighton and Hove U3A session – Thursday 12th May (3pm). 
  •  Metamorphosis Art Group – Friday 13th May (2-4pm), Mezzanine bar, The Dome
  • Going to see Culture Together (from Fabrica gallery) – Tuesday 24th May (11-1pm)

To find out more, and how to participate at sessions free of charge, please contact Strike a Light by email: strikealight@rocketmail.com or call 07727 006538

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Brighton and Hove in World War I – stories from the past

Help support a new graphic novel project from Brighton organisation QueenSpark Books   through Kickstarter and find out more about Brighton and Hove’s 100th anniversary of the Great War.
 
This marks a moment in time where they can creatively engage young people in understanding the lives of their forebears, and the impact the War had on this city and its people.
 
QueenSpark Books has been working with young people across Brighton & Hove, to produce a print and online graphic novel based on the lives of the people of Brighton & Hove up to and including the First World War. Aiming to commemorate and share stories and tales of life in the city in the lead up to, during and immediately after the Great War. Watch Brighton’s war stories here.
 
The project uses local stories and images from the period between 1900-1920 to create and tell some of the lesser known histories of the City. Material has been drawn from the archives of QueenSpark Books, Brighton & Hove Museum and The Keep, to develop

See quirky images from Brighton’s home front from 1914-1918 here or take a tour around the city during wartime. View local artefacts from this time including a local pass book which had to be carried by all British subjects and visitor permit books for travel were more detailed. The authorities even needed to know whether your male family members were ‘for or against His Majesty’s allies in the present war’.

Permit book from WWI in Brighton
Permit book from WWI in Brighton

“My mother, Amy Lee, who later became Amy Jones … had many jobs including being a cook at Divalls, Smiths in Lewes Road, a greengrocer in Lewes Road and Cooks the Jam Factory. When war broke out she went to Allen West to work on munitions and said that while she was there one of the floors collapsed. It was said that the weight of the munitions was too great. 

Afterwards she was sent to Royal Alfred Sailors Institute at Belevere. When she returned to Brighton she worked on the trams based at Lewes Road. The photo was probably taken as an advertising feature for a local paper…”Ruby Jones

Buses in Brighton
Buses in Brighton

This month – Conversation Cafe with Gateways to First World War and author Douglas D’Enno

We’re hosting a Conversations Cafe with not one but two speakers this month!

The session takes place on Wednesday 13th April at Jubilee Library 2.30-4.30pm. Free to all. 

belongingWe’ll be starting a new book, a novel by local author Umi Sinha called Belonging, provided by the Brighton and Hove Libraries Service. From the darkest days of the British Raj through to the aftermath of the First World War, BELONGING tells the interwoven story of three generations and their struggles to understand and free themselves from a troubled history steeped in colonial violence. It is a novel of secrets that unwind through Lila’s story, through her grandmother’s letters home from India and the diaries kept by her father, Henry, as he puzzles over the enigma of his birth and his stormy marriage to the mysterious Rebecca.’

v0_largeWe’ll be welcoming Dr Sam Carroll of the Gateways to WWI project who will talk about the breadth of this project, and discuss aspects of their activities and experiences alongside discussions about the Great War.

Gateways to the First World War is a centre for public engagement with the First World War centenary funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). The aim of the Gateways team is to encourage and support public interest in the centenary of the First World War through a range of events and activities such as open days and study days, advice on access to materials and expertise, and signposting for other resources and forms of support.

We will also be meeting historian Douglas d’Enno, a historian, linguist and journalist who has made an exhaustive study of the impact of the First World War on Brigdownloadhton. Douglas is the author of new book, Brighton in the Great War and writes: ‘Although the impact of the Great War on Brighton was profound in many ways, the town was spared any direct attack by the enemy. The fear of spies and sabotage, however, was widespread at first and aliens were an issue which had to be swiftly resolved under new legislation. Allies, of course, were warmly welcomed, with accommodation soon being found in particular for those fleeing the catastrophic events in Belgium.’

Sessions are part of the World War I focussed Boys on the Plaque project and supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund.