Tag Archives: Wreath

The Unremembered project

IMG_2934We’re pleased to have been commissioned to make a wreath for The Unremembered project in Hastings and St Leonards.
This is with the Big Ideas Company to develop activities with local community groups to explore the history of the Labour Corps – service personnel during World War I, and often forgotten in this part of history.


We created the wreath with 22 older people who meet at the Elizabeth Blackman Centre in Hastings, East Sussex. The session was facilitated by Strike a Light Director Cath Tajima Powell and it went really well. We’re really pleased with how it’s turned out!

The Unremembered project background:
This project is about the Labour Corps – Service Personnel in the British Army who have essentially been pretty forgotten and aren’t really commemorated anywhere. The aim is to raise the profile of the Labour Corps and share this learning with community groups.
Who were the Labour Corps?

 Image: Collection of John Sheen author of histories of the Northumberland Fusiliers and Durham Light Infantry.
 The Labour Corps supplied the army with weapons and ammunition, food and fodder, water and fuel. They built and maintained roads and railways. They were essential to the war effort.
British and Allied Forces struggled to cope with the demand for manpower after the huge losses of men during the Battle of the Somme in 1916. From January 1917, manpower was drawn from the UK, China, India, South Africa, Egypt, Canada, the Caribbean and many other places within the British Empire.
Tens of thousands travelled thousands of miles to defend freedom and although they rarely saw service in the frontline, many died or were seriously injured. Today their contributions and sacrifice are all but forgotten. They are The Unremembered.


 
 
 
 
 

The Unremembered project

20180313_160405.jpgWe participated in a great project recently ‘The Unremembered’ to commemorate the brave sacrifices of the Labour Corps especially those from across the globe – in particular black and minority ethnic soldiers, and their heroic contribution to the war effort.
We worked with the Memories Past group in Portslade to create a wreath to remember the sinking of the SS Mendi (a South African troop ship) in the English Channel near the Isle of Wight in 1917, with the loss of most hands on board, some 600 black Labour Corps soldiers from South Africa.
20180313_151004.jpgOur wreath was a collage and cardboard combination with images from those who’d been serving at the time of the disaster and includes all the names of the men lost at sea, along with detailing in the colours of the South African flag.