A forthcoming exhibition will tell the story of what local people really did for fun during the decade that taste forgot whilst local school children compete to design the poster that will be used to promote the event!
Organisers of a new exhibition in Bury St Edmunds are appealing for help as they launch their bid to document one of the most important and exciting decades in the life of West Suffolk – the 1970s.
Called ‘Loving the Seventies’, the exhibition at Moyse’s Hall will focus on leisure and entertainment and detail the influential decade through local memorabilia, spoken word, photographs, documents, films and recordings. Many historians increasingly point to the 1970s as a key foundation of the modern world with new influences such as higher spending power, foreign holidays and new technologies beginning to shape and change society.
Anyone interested in contributing their 70s memories, objects, photographs, documents, film clips and recordings, or volunteering to help stage the exhibition can contact the organisers at the dedicated email address: Savingthe70s@westsuffolk.gov.uk or by phoning Moyse’s Hall Museum on 01284 706183.
“Whether you were a hippy, glam rocker, a punk, disco king or queen, or just bringing up the children, we’d love to hear what 70s memorabilia and stories you have,” said Peter Jones, St Edmundsbury Borough Council Heritage Officer.
“We’d welcome contributions in everything from music, fashion, technology, sport, leisure, culture and entertainment, so we can save them for generations to come.”
Apart from outlandish clothes, platform shoes and lurid colour schemes, the 1970s – often dubbed ‘the decade that taste forgot’ – was a pivotal period locally, nationally and internationally. What began with flower power, decimalisation and equal pay, ended with punk rock, wide scale strikes and the Winter of Discontent.
“During this turbulent time, we want to remember the joys of living in, or even moving to either the towns or countryside of West Suffolk in the 70s,” said Peter Jones.
Moyse’s Hall is one of five museums in the county to join forces for the umbrella project, ‘Saving the 70s’, led by the Association of Suffolk Museums. The two-year project, which will also involve similar exhibitions at six museums in Hertfordshire, has been awarded a £247,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. The museum will also be holding events such as craft workshops and Memory Gathering days at which special reminiscence boxes will be used to help people recall the time.
“We want the exhibition to involve all ages and will also be working with Age UK to talk to people including those suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia,” added Peter Jones. “We hope the memory boxes will include all sorts of iconic 70s items from soda syphons to Bay City Roller annuals, digital watches and pocket calculators. We’ve already collected some items through word of mouth and people are loving the 70s already!”
Pupils at schools in West Suffolk are being encouraged to take part in a ‘design a poster’ competition for the forthcoming ‘Loving the 70s’ exhibition at Moyse’s Hall Museum, Bury St Edmunds.
“Whether through talking to their parents, grandparents or even researching online, we’d love to see how the younger generation interpret this fascinating period by designing our poster,” said Peter Jones, St Edmundsbury Borough Council Heritage Officer. “We hope the competition will help the younger generation learn about what people in West Suffolk did for leisure and entertainment all those years ago, and how it compares and contrasts to the life they know today.”
‘Loving the Seventies’ will be staged in the Great Hall at Moyse’s from July 5 through to November 9, 2014