Organised by Nicola Benge of Strike a Light, Jo Palache from Brighton Museum came to give a talk to to Conversation Cafe group (part of The Boys on the Plaque) project about Indian Soldiers in Brighton in World War I, and to share learning on this topic for the Dr Blighty project. This project from Nutkhut, part of this year’s Brighton Festival, was an HLF funded series of activities commemorating the contribution of Indian Soldiers in the Great War as well as the Brighton connection to this part of the Commonwealth. Thanks to Jo Palache for coming to speak to the group.
Change of event for June 2016 – Instead of our usual World War I themed Conversation Cafe for the Boys on the Plaqueproject at Jubilee Library, we’ll be going on an outing for those who can attend, to the Pavilion Blues exhibition at Brighton Museum instead. (Details below). If you would like to attend, it is free to do so, but please RSVP. We will meet at the front of Jubilee Library on Wednesday 8th June at 2.30pm and walk across to the Museum from there – we will have a speaker (Jo Palache from Brighton Museum) at the exhibition to discuss it with us. Please bring a proof of your address with you so that it is free to attend (for Brighton and Hove residents).
In addition, our new book for June’s session from the library service is available. This is called The Suicide Club by author and ex BBC documentary maker Andrew Williams. This is a dark, disturbing and untold story of the shadow espionage battle during the First World War. For all readers of Robert Harris, William Boyd and John le Carre, The Suicide Club is a First World War spy thriller set in Occupied Belgium in 1917, and tells the dark, disturbing and untold story of the shadow espionage battle fought behind the lines. Andrew Williams’ novels possess ‘a richness of characterisation and intelligence that few thrillers can match’ (Sunday Times). More about the Pavilion Blues exhibition: An exhibition exploring the history of the Pavilion Military Hospital in Brighton.
Strike a Light in partnership with Nutkhut and Brighton and Hove Libraries Service hosted a lunchtime event today at Jubilee Library. We were pleased to invite Artistic Director Ajay Chhabra of Nutkhut and author Umi Sinha to discuss the Dr Blighty project currently taking place in the city during Brighton Festival, alongside the novel Belonging, both of which explore the theme of Indian Soldiers in Brighton during WWI and colonialism during that time and beyond. It was an interesting and rich experience with in-depth historical information and thoughts on this period of Britain and India’s past. We had a full house, followed up the event with an audience Q+A and followed this with chai from the library cafe and a book signing!
Our free Heritage Open Days events taking place in 2016 will be at Fabrica on Thursday 8th September from 1-4pm. A WWI historic walking tour will also take place on Friday 9th September, which will be led by historian Dr Geoffrey Mead (donations welcome).
Keep the Home Fires Burning
Thursday 8th September 2016 1-4pm
Fabrica, 40 Duke Street, Brighton BN1 1AG
Join us for this special drop-in event, to explore and contribute to our local heritage project, The Boys on the Plaque! Image created by Tom Frost Find out about remarkable young men who lived in our city and fought in the war 100 years ago, and the discoveries we’ve made about their experiences, families and legacies. Keep the Home Fires Burning brings together local research, creative workshops and exhibitions, heritage activities and screenings to explore personal memories of Brighton & Hove residents during WWI wartime and the stories that have been left behind for us to rediscover. Fabrica is a contemporary art gallery housed in the former Holy Trinity Church in Brighton, which was built in 1817 and has a rich and fascinating history. To celebrate Heritage Open Days, Fabrica will open it’s doors to the public for an afternoon of stimulating and engaging activities and exhibits to discover more about our local community, inspiring new ways of considering the home front experience of the Great War. Visitors are also invited to bring their own stories and keepsakes to share with volunteers and staff and contribute to our research project, which seeks to uncover the history of each of 95 local soldiers who are commemorated in the church. Could you be a relative of one of the Boys? They mostly lived in the streets surrounding the church – you can find a list of the names here: boysontheplaque.wordpress.com/the-names-on-the-plaque/ Boys on the Plaque is an HLF project delivered by Fabrica, Strike a Light and Brighton and Hove Libraries Service
Wheelchair ramp built into entrance. Guide dogs welcome. Accessible toilets on site. Accessible parking space (1) in front of building.
Keep the Home Fires Burning is a relaxed free drop-in activity. All ages are welcome. Free hot and soft drinks are available throughout, as well as cakes. Guests are invited to relax and chat whilst enjoying the event and activities. This event will look at the home front of Brighton during WWI with film, song, creative workshops, exhibition, performance and research related to the local history and cultural memory of the city. Please book here: http://keepthehomefiresburning.eventbrite.com
The event takes place in a large contemporary visual gallery which is in a 19th century converted church in central Brighton opposite Browns Restaurant. It is ten minutes walk from Brighton seafront. Find out more about all our events and the project here:http://boysontheplaque.wordpress.com Public Transport Directions: Brighton Railway Station is approximately 15-20 minutes walk. Local buses stop within walking distance: http://www.visitbrighton.com/culture/fabrica-p384651#location
Strike a Light / Fabrica / Brighton & Hove City Libraries Service
Boys on the Plaque Walking Tour, Central Brighton with Historian Dr Geoffrey Mead
Friday 9th September 2016
Fabrica, 40 Duke Street, Brighton BN1 1AG
Led by local historian Dr Geoffrey Mead, this will be a unique Walking Tour of Brighton’s historic The Lanes and North Laine area. Exploring the stories of local soldiers that we have discovered as part of a local heritage project, we get to know the young men who lived in these streets over 100 years ago, before joining a war that took them far from home. Inspired by a selection of stories from local soldiers commemorated on a memorial plaque at the Holy Trinity Church, the tour will begin at Fabrica art gallery. This tour is part of a WWI local heritage project The Boys on the Plaque: http://boysontheplaque.wordpress.com The tour will last 60-90 minutes and will take place on the streets of Brighton – sensible shoes and attire recommended. Event not suitable for children under the age of 12. Free to join, donations welcomed. Event not suitable for children under the age of 12.
Come join us this Thursday for a free lunchtime heritage and literary event for the Dr BlightyIndian Soldiers project, part of Brighton Festival. This is a lunchtime event. Feel free to bring your own lunch, and Temptations cafe in the library will also be open for lunches and refreshments. They will serve a specially made Indian Chai drink to accompany the event. Thursday 12th May 12-1.30pm, Jubilee Library, Jubilee Square, Brighton
Dr Blighty Brighton Festival lunchtime event (Free) –
The event includes:
* A talk with Artistic Director of Nutkhut, Ajay Chhabra 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 her book chronicling the darkest days of the British Raj 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. * Q&A session with event audience and speakers * This will be followed by an author book signing – copies of her new book will be available at the event, or bring your own copy. All welcome! With thanks to Brighton and Hove Libraries and Information Service for their support. (with thanks to Brighton and Hove Libraries and Information Service for their support)
CONVERSATION CAFES Our free WWI reminiscence CONVERSATION CAFÉS continue this month, taking place on the second Wednesday of every month. THIS MONTH: This month’s session is on Wednesday 11th May at Jubilee Library, Brighton from 2.30-4.30pm. Free and all welcome!
Jo Palache from Brighton Museum will be our speaker at next month’s Conversation Cafe. She will talk about piecing together the stories of the Pavilion Military Hospital from it’s beginnings treating Indian Soldiers to its work with British amputees. She will give an overview of the hospital’s history from the Indian to the Limbless hospital for those who aren’t familiar with it, and will then focus on some stories of the individuals involved, in reference to the new Pavilion Blues exhibition at Brighton Museum.
We’ll be discussing a novel by local author Umi Sinha called Belonging: 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.’
Strike a Light – Arts & Heritage is a community interest company. We focus on exploring life stories and history through creative projects. Based in Brighton, Strike a Light works with and for the wider community across Sussex