Pararchive: Open Access Community Storytelling and the Digital Archive

Lead Research Organisation: University of Leeds
Department Name: School of Media & Communication

Abstract

The Pararchive project is designed to produce a new open digital platform that will allow users to harvest existing online archival sources and combine their own films, photographs and ephemera as a means of digital storytelling and enabling community research. It will be a single 'go-to' space for online research and collaboration in the face of burgeoning and often diverse opportunities to use online archives. Unlike existing platforms it will allow users to organise and link materials across all online sources in one place and act as a single access point based on the integration of public archives with intuitive storytelling tools providing a solution to the problems of harnessing and channelling online community research. It will be a repository of both personal and institutional resources researched, co-designed and evaluated by its users. It will address crucial issues related to the idea of open digital space, community use of cultural assets, self-representation and the potential to build new online communities. It will avoid the IP issues that have limited previous attempts to co-ordinate and re-use online materials through its strategy of hosting content links rather than digital content. In the face of a growing post-scarcity environment communities are encountering real barriers to organising and connecting to resources and each other. Pararchive represents a vitally important resource in this context and will be freely available to all communities. It is a means of managing the rapidly changing digital heritage landscape and is designed to build capacity through reflecting on the potential for developing expertise, confidence and autonomy.

The platform will, for example, provide content links, initial narrative threads and thematic and geo-location tools to encourage connectivity and community identification. It will represent existing and emergent communities and link them with a community of content providers- archives, museums, galleries and news organisations. Such organisations increasingly 'open' approach to collaborative engagement can thus be fully tested by community-led research. Researchers, creative professionals and cultural institutions can also work with communities in the design and co-development of new research that ensures effective and on-going relevance and impact. It will exist in two formats; one a centrally hosted open version free to all users and also as a takeaway open-source tool that community, education and public groups can use for specific research purposes and self-host.

The Pararchive project develops themes that emerged from previous AHRC/BBC funded Open Archive research about the 1984/5 Miners' Strike that looked at how communities might take ownership of cultural and historical archives in which they are represented and how they could give voice to their own stories. (http://ics.leeds.ac.uk/research/research-projects/strike-stories/ ). Following this research and a Creative Technology Lab Project in 2012 (http://wearecaper.com/portfolio/leeds-creative-technology-lab/) we now want to develop this platform.

To support the development of Pararchive the BBC and Science Museum have agreed to provide access to archival materials and staff expertise as a means of demonstrating the value of collaborative working and will act as our main institutional supporters. We will also be working with a community arts facilitator Mad Lab (http://madlab.org.uk/ ) and four community partners.

Using iterative co-design methods we will responsively develop and launch Pararchive. Our four community groups will actively shape Pararchive via sustained collaboration with the research team, the designers and each other and run their own research through the platform. We will then jointly evaluate and launch it as a free public resource.

Planned Impact

Public Impact- This will be delivered through the creation of an open access platform through which members of the public will be able to develop a series of engagements with online resources that will facilitate a number of socially important activities. It will allow them to curate and incorporate institutional materials with their own 'historical' texts and engage in individuated and collaborative digital storytelling in an open, 'democratic' space. It will allow for the development of user communities build around a number of foci including local history, cultural interests, news stories, hobbies and creative practice. It will foster and encourage creative thinking, self-reflective storytelling, engagement and participation. We will be particularly focussing on diverse or geographically remote user communities, and will seek to identify potential future impact related research in relation to these audiences- for example in terms of building community resources. Something that emerged strongly from the previous Open Archive project was the potential of collaborative research and creative practice to foster greater cross-community cohesion and understanding. For instance, our project allowed miners and their supporters to work directly with police officers to design and create film responses to the content of the BBC archive which they felt accurately reflected events that had become historically fixed and suspect.

Crucial to the ability to deliver impact is the development of an effective community engagement strategy and this forms a central part of the project and will be co-developed with our participant communities as the resource develops. Ensuring successful community buy-in to the platform is also crucial to establishing the continuation of the resource and its ability to deliver a lasting and important set of legacies. There are also broader public impacts that could emerge through this work, particularly in the role such a resource could play in relation to education and also in terms of local and national media ecologies and these will be explored in the initial workshop phase of the project.

In relation to the determination of the research agenda communities will be enabled to select their own research focus as part of the methodology and will thus be directive and empowered in an environment where the research content agenda is usually set for them and to which they are recruited. Similarly they will be integral to the design, build and evaluation of the platform and the research relationships of which they have been a part. They will be fully integrated into the process of research design and in the determination and development of impact.

Public Institutional Impact- This project (and the previous work that has inspired it) is predicated on addressing vital issues of ownership and developing collaborative practices. For the BBC and broader cultural institutions the need to enfranchise the user and enhance their assets through new forms of collaborative curation, metadata capture and creative engagement is pressing. The need for collaborative partnerships to unlock the potential of content, facilitated by the demand for digital access, is now being driven by institutional recognition of the impossibility of the task facing them as individual organisations in an increasingly difficult resource environment. It is within this framework that the BBC and other organisations can benefit from such a resource and the impact of this project has the potential to radically change institutional practices and attitudes towards their public audiences. The growing drive towards collaborative and partnership working can be seen in recent developments around the JISC funded Digital Public Space initiate and in the recent trials such as the BBC World Service Archive that relies on user knowledge and expertise to tag and annotate programmes.
 
Title Information animation for the YARN platform 
Description This is a piece of commissioned animation to promote the YARN platform and help to develop impact. 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact The film is acting to recruit users and promote the resource we developed as part of the project. 
URL https://vimeo.com/156313120
 
Title Interactive 'Birth Stories' display 
Description A new touchscreen installation was added to the Thackray Medical Museum's having a baby gallery. This will display co-produced birth stories resulting from a series of workshops and engagement activities (including workshops with a migrant women's support group), via the digital storytelling platform Yarn. The display uses a new 'Project' page feature, designed specifically for the collation and curation of Yarn content as an output of this research project. 
Type Of Art Artefact (including digital) 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact The display helps to achieve the collaborating museum's aim of diversifying the narrative displayed in it's existing childbirth gallery, by adding stories which relate the experiences of migrant women living in the UK (predominantly from Afghanistan, Syria, Egypt and Iran). The display also adds, significantly, to the museum's digital offering and engagement potential by inviting visitors to contribute their own stories to the Birth Stories project. 
 
Title Pupils films on Vimeo 
Description Paul Cooke and Rosie Wilkinson led film-making workshops at Edna G Olds Academy (17th May 2016) and Webster Primary (27th May). Pupils were introduced to the themes of the project strand involving The National Holocaust Centre and shown materials collated on Yarn. Time was spent developing interview techniques and discussing identity (focused around key objects selected by the pupils) before filming the pupils interviews in groups. The activity prepared pupils for their subsequent visit to the National Holocaust Centre (particularly the element of the trip which involved hearing a Holocaust Survivor's testimony and asking them questions) and also yielded film footage for the pupils to add to their Yarn stories. Cooke and Wilkinson also filmed aspects of both group's visit to the National Holocaust Centre on 8th June 2016, including testimony from Holocaust survivor Susi Bechhöfer and her responses to questions from the pupils. Resulting footage will be made available to the schools to use in the creation of Yarn stories and, ultimately exhibition materials for NHC's new Media Centre. 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact Pupils' Yarn stories feature resulting footage as do schemes of work created by the National Holocaust Centre, to create a publically available resource, suggested ways of teaching the holocaust in primary settings. 
URL https://vimeo.com/171569856
 
Title User guide for the YARN platform 
Description A 10 minute animated instruction film for users. 
Type Of Art Film/Video/Animation 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact The film is intended as a user guide for new members. 
URL https://vimeo.com/156313543
 
Title Yarn stories 
Description Together with our museum partners and a number of schools and community groups, we have been producing a collection of online exhibition materials in the form of Yarn stories, during the course of the project. These can be accessed directly via Yarn (https://yarncommunity.org/) or by clicking links on the project webpage at http://www.digitalheritage.leeds.ac.uk/project-publications/. The stories feature archive materials form each museum alongside participants own materials and text and content sourced from the web. 
Type Of Art Artistic/Creative Exhibition 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact - Stories created as part of the 'Birth Stories' strand were subsequently displayed on a touchscreen within Thackray Medical Museum, to add a dynamic, coproduced, digital element to their 'Having a Baby' gallery. Accompanying display panels invite museum visitors to contribute further stories. - Pupils Yarn stories and schemes of work which quote from these have been used as part of the National Holocaust Centre's teaching training and also made publicly available as a free resource for teachers. It is hoped that this will allow NHC to build more partnerships with primary schools and encourage teaching of this challenging subject matter. - Members of an Afghan Women's Association who helped to co-create Yarn stories for the 'Birth Stories' strand reported that the process had made them think differently about the potential of digital tools to support museum engagement and also more likely to visit Thackray Medical Museum. The groups' leader also stated that participation in the project had increased the womens' confidence and encouraged them to open up about birth experiences which they had previously been shy or ashamed to discuss. - One participant from the Science Museum strand is considering introducing Yarn in her work with Adults in Supported Living accommodation, to develop IT skills, increase confidence and encourage engagement with others. 
URL http://www.digitalheritage.leeds.ac.uk/project-publications/
 
Description The Pararchive project involved collaboration between a range of communities and two large institutional partners, the Science Museum Group and the BBC Archive. The project developed a platform to facilitate storytelling, research and to provide curatorial tools. It was co-designed and tested by communities in conjunction with academics, curators and technology developers. Using co-production methods in combination with innovative storytelling workshops and creative technology labs, the project demonstrates the necessity of adopting co-working approaches to the problems of cultural heritage curation, engendering democratic encounters with official culture, and developing new partnerships able to consider the challenges of the digital archive. The project resulted in the creation of the new storytelling tool Yarn (http://yarncommunity.org) and offers a series of insights into co-creation methods, the role of institutional voice, concepts of democratisation of institutional culture, audience, creative intervention and the nature of open digital public space.

Since the initial award we have developed our learning through involvement in a range of additional ongoing projects, one of which has just finished and these are the key findings:

Digital tools in the service of difficult heritage: Briefing Document

Overview
In 2016 a team of researchers at the University of Leeds, led by Professor Paul Cooke, collaborated with the Science Museum, the Thackray Medical Museum and the National Holocaust Centre and Museum to explore how digital tools might offer new ways of curating and responding to challenging histories (http://digitalheritage.leeds.ac.uk) using the new online platform Yarn (www.yarncommunity.org), which was developed at Leeds in collaboration with local community organizations. This document summarizes the methods used and outlines impact from three case studies as well as highlighting key recommendations emerging from the project.

The main activities in this project comprised three strands:
• Strand 1: The first project strand involved the National Holocaust Centre and Museum (NHC) and primary school children from Nottingham and Manchester (a high proportion of whom were from migrant backgrounds) to explore the lessons to be learnt from the Holocaust for the children's lives today. The Centre's main aims were to reach out to a more ethnically diverse audience, establish stronger channels of communication and exchange with schools, and enable those who were unable to visit the museum to access its collections. Pupils took part in a series of workshops and a museum visit over a period of three months to create a series of digital resources (Yarn stories), drawing from the NHC's collection and adding their own text, images and video. These Yarn stories contextualize a variety of historical material, chosen by the students in collaboration with their teachers, the museum and the research team, and highlight the students' individual responses to this material. Artworks, poems, prose, audio files and video created by the children, with the assistance of the research team and their teachers, were used to create a rich resource which showcased their responses and also served as an effective presentation tool at a celebration assembly, combining live performance with prerecorded material. One unanticipated outcome of this project strand was that NHC published a Yarn-based scheme of work designed to guide primary school teachers through the process of teaching children about the Kindertransport and Holocaust. The Centre found that the pupils' work enabled them to share many examples of good practice, and passages of their Yarn stories are quoted within the scheme of work.

• Strand 2: For the second strand, members of a local migrant women's support group (mostly made up of women from Afghanistan, Syrian, Iran and Egypt) shared birth stories in response to the Thackray Medical Museum's 'Having a Baby' exhibition. The Museum's priorities were to attract more ethnically diverse local audiences (particularly by presenting a broader spectrum of experiences in its childbirth gallery), facilitate cost-effective community engagement, find ways of sensitively representing difficult birth stories, explore digital means to develop a more dynamic dialogue with visitors, and consider new ways of incorporating physical digital interfaces within the museum. As well as delivering a number of public-facing events to other community groups and public sector workers, researchers and museum curatorial staff delivered a series of workshops in the migrant group's regular meeting space, which involved handling museum objects, learning more about the museum's collections and discussing experiences of childbirth. As many of the participants spoke limited English, group leaders assisted with translation or discussions were held in participants' first language and subsequently translated. Due to this language barrier and varying levels of literacy (and digital literacy), the information shared was then made into Yarn stories by the research team and published with the participants' consent. A project Facebook page was also created to engage a wider local audience, share the Yarn stories created and invite informal participation. The resulting online exhibition, displayed on an interactive touchscreen within the Museum's 'Having a Baby' gallery, combines materials from the museum's archives with those contributed by workshop participants and other contributors.

• Strand 3: This strand involved working with veterans and their families with connections to Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), using the Science Museum's Wounded exhibition as a starting point for constructing alternative narratives and histories about their experience. This took place through a series of workshops and museum visits and culminated in a workshop at the Science Museum to consider digital engagement and co-production strategies. The Science Museum was keen to explore new ways for audiences to respond to their collections, ways to engage audiences in less formal or temporary digital exchanges, and alternative channels for feedback. Yarn stories produced by the participants outlined their own backgrounds and interest in the project and explored their personal reactions to the exhibition's content and presentation, as well as drawing in comparisons to other comparable exhibitions. They also reflected on steps museums might take to ensure that audience engagement, digital or otherwise, around difficult heritage was handled responsibly and with sensitivity.


Major Outputs
New 'Project feature for Yarn: In the course of our project, our museum partners expressed a need to add features to the core platform of Yarn that would enable co-produced Yarn stories to be grouped and represented as distinct in the universe of Yarn content. In response, the research team commissioned the development of a new 'Project' feature for Yarn, which affords museums a level of curatorial control over Yarn content displayed within the museum or linked to their exhibitions. A new 'Projects' section has also been added to Yarn, which allows users to browse published projects.
Touchscreen display: A new interactive touchscreen display of birth stories was installed in the Thackray Medical Museum's 'Having a Baby' gallery, along with information panels which provide details of the 'Birth Stories' project and introduce museum visitors to the Yarn tool. The new 'Project' feature for Yarn has allowed the museum to assemble stories co-produced by workshop participants and other contributors during the project. The stories produced during our workshops bring a more complex and diverse presentation of childbirth, reflecting the experience of migrant groups engaged by the project and of childbirth in other countries, whilst bringing the voices of Leeds residents into the museum. The touchscreen itself adds significantly to the museum's digital offering.
Online exhibition materials: Over thirty original Yarn stories were created during the course of the ten-month project. Full details and links can be found on our project website at http://www.digitalheritage.leeds.ac.uk/project-publications/.
Scheme of work for primary schools: The National Holocaust Centre and Museum created a Yarn-based scheme of work for primary school teachers, in response to the Yarn stories created by schools involved in the project (in fact, the package directly quotes passages from the pupils' stories as examples of good practice). The scheme of work is designed to guide Primary teachers through the topic of teaching the Holocaust. It outlines individual lessons and examples of work that focus on the key question 'What can we learn from the Kindertransport?' It includes individual testimonies from survivors who speak at the National Holocaust Centre and explores themes of identity, experience and remembrance. This resource is freely available from the Yarn website at https://yarncommunity.org/stories/348.

Impact
Due to the short nature of this project it is not possible, at this stage, to fully assess all areas of impact, particularly that stemming from outputs of the latter stages, such as the Thackray Medical Museum's touchscreen display and The National Holocaust Centre and Museum's scheme of work for primary schools, although it is hoped that this will be significant. However, the following key areas of impact have been identified:
New opportunities for co-production and co-curation: Whilst it was widely recognised that museums have a responsibility to represent a range of audience views resulting from digital co-production activities, and that it was preferable not to exclude responses published online, it was felt that greater control was necessary for content which was to be displayed within the museum, particularly with regard to sensitive and challenging heritage. The newly created 'Project' feature for Yarn, which is a direct outcome of this project, allows all users to group and collate stories on a unifying home page and thereby also affords museums a level of curatorial control, without editing stories created by its audience. The feature also makes it easier to display a selection of content on digital interfaces within museums, particularly when used in combination with kiosk software or a firewall configured to restrict web browsing beyond the project home page. By linking Yarn project pages to existing museum websites and social media platforms, museums and community groups can also bring a new dimension to their audience engagement, create a platform for temporary or ongoing projects and solicit feedback.
Helping museums to meet nationally-agreed standards: By taking forward the findings of our previous Cultural Value report, through this follow-on project, and engaging with the latest academic research, the Thackray Medical Museum has been able to demonstrate innovative, sustainable development and good practice in its recent application to the AHRC's accreditation scheme.
Supporting outreach and engagement: Members of a migrant women's association, who helped to co-create Yarn stories for the 'Birth Stories' strand, reported that the process had made them think differently about the potential of digital tools to support museum engagement and also much more likely to visit the Thackray Medical Museum. The group's leader stated that, in her view, participation in the project had increased the women's confidence, broken down barriers and encouraged them to open up about birth experiences which they had previously been afraid or ashamed to discuss. She also noted that the women had been able to share negative and traumatic experiences as well as positive ones and that this was a major personal step for many. Impact such as this does not stem solely from the aspects of our engagement with the group which involved digital tools but also from discussion sessions, informal conversation, object handling sessions and a museum visit. Crucially, the digital element was used to compliment and augment these modes of engagement, rather than being offered as a substitute.
Promoting the use of Yarn as a free tool for community groups: By using Yarn, the schools involved in Strand 1 were able to easily collate resources from archive collections and the web alongside pupils' own work. Teachers appreciated the intuitive, tablet-friendly design, the ability to easily link to other platforms (e.g. YouTube and Twitter) and bring a polished finish to presentations of work, whilst also supporting the development of children's IT skills. One participant involved in Strand 3 is considering introducing Yarn in her work with adults in supported living accommodation, to develop IT skills, increase confidence and encourage engagement with others.

Recommendations
• Digital engagement tools should not be seen as an end in themselves but as part of a suite of tools for engaging diverse audiences in a range of ways. Equally, digital engagement should not be seen as a 'quick-fix' and strategies need to be implemented with the same level of care and consideration as for other forms of engagement. Accessibility needs to be carefully assessed and guidance provided to help audiences to use digital tools.
• Platforms such as Yarn offer a more neutral, democratic space for co-production and also reduce the need for organisations to retain control over content. However, it is necessary to recognise that displaying co-produced digital content within museums may require additional consideration, particularly in relation to difficult or challenging heritage.
• When inviting a response from audiences, our work suggests that it is important for organisations to assess risk and signpost appropriate sources of help, support or further information. It may be beneficial to suggest a framework for responses when inviting audiences to collaborate.
• Digital tools can be an effective way for museums to proactively solicit, collate and display feedback, allowing this to occur in a number of ways (e.g. re-curating digital content or creating personalised histories in relation to collections).
• Digital co-production platforms such as Yarn, which allow users to curate web-sourced content, do not exacerbate the risk of misuse of material which is already in the public domain. They do offer the potential for museums to mitigate against this by suggesting frameworks for discourse and signposting relevant resources (including their own websites).
• The introduction of digital tools can be effective at many different stages of audience engagement with collections. In some case (as we found in Strand 1) the digital platform helps to drive and structure engagement, whereas other users prefer to bring in the technology later, as a space for reflection (Strand 3). The most effective tools are flexible and can be used in a variety of ways.
• Linking co-produced digital content to existing museum websites and social media profiles can be a cost-effective way to promote more dynamic, in-depth exchanges between museums and their audiences. Both short- and long-term projects can be enabled in this way, by simply adding new links to official webpages.
• Encouraging audiences to engage with museums online or participate in co-production processes creates expectation of a response or evidence of how these contributions are being used, or the impact that they have within the museum. Organizations need to be clear and upfront about what they are able to bring to this two-way process.
Exploitation Route Over the course of the eighteen-month project we created a series of tools that were designed to be intuitive and flexible, aiding users to develop projects that incorporated online heritage materials and allowing them to add their own materials in the form of photographs, films, text, and sound recordings. We wanted to orchestrate existing web functions and innovate new tools that would allow people to work on a single site and draw together disparate and unconnected bodies of content. We also wanted to create a space in which every member could create and curate their own collections of materials, and where institutions like galleries and museums could post collections for public use and gather associative data.
Once the communities had determined what they wanted to explore we then engaged a range of institutional partners, most notably the Science Museum Group and BBC Archives, to begin to provide content and materials to form the basis of these projects and allowed these institutions to explore their own relationships with communities and consider ways in which their content could be published and enhanced through crowdsourcing and public expertise The resulting resource Yarn facilitates a number of activities for users and can be summarised in the following manner:
For citizens and communities it means that they can:
1. Tell stories, research cultural and historical themes, create collections, campaign and be creative;
2. Develop links with other people and other communities that share similar interests and concerns;
3. Develop community projects and host collections of community and personal materials including films, photographs and sound files;
4. Keep control of their own intellectual property (IP) by hot linking their own content from third party sites e.g., Historypin, Flickr and Facebook;
5. Explore stories and collections created by other users;
6. Showcase knowledge and personal expertise.
For cultural organisations it means that they can:
1. Feature and promote their collections through the resource without IP transfer;
2. Have access to an open workspace that can create new links to complementary collections and crowd source public expertise;
3. Source content metadata and receive analytics about who is using your content;
4. Run curatorial or research projects and encourage community use of their digital collections.
For researchers it means that they can access:
1. A set of tools through which to run community projects;
2. A place to feature projects and creative project archives;
3. A means of identifying communities they might want to work with;
4. A collaborative partnership with communities and cultural heritage organisations.

It is specifically targeted at providing a resource for communities and organisations and is currently being targeted, through a series of partnerships, research and on-going funding applications to further develop impact and grow its user network.
Sectors Communities and Social Services/Policy,Creative Economy,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections

URL http://www.pararchive.com
 
Description Our findings have been used by a number of community organisations to help frame their approach to storytelling and the design of projects to capture historical and cultural events. For example we have worked with Junction Arts to help them develop their successful HLF bid to conduct a history project to celebrate their 40th anniversary and are currently working with a range of library and archival groups to assist their curatorial and archiving needs. The resultant platform- YARN ( http://yarncommunity.org) is now being used by a wide range of community and library groups. We have been delighted by the responses to YARN and the inclusion of the platform within a number of recently funded research projects and several ongoing applications that have developed in parallel with our own research. For example, YARN has been included on the recently successful Junction Arts HLF JA40 application for community history (http://junctionarts.org/2015/10/ja40/), as part of the AHRC funded Cultural Value Project Digital Tools in the Service of Difficult Heritage: How Recent Research Can Benefit Museums and their Audiences (http://www.leeds.ac.uk/arts/news/article/4365/new_ahrc-funded_project_digital_tools_in_the_service_of_difficult_heritage_how_recent_research_can_benefit_museums_and_their_audiences ) and the British Academy-funded Leeds Voices- Communicating Superdiversity project(http://www.leeds.ac.uk/arts/info/20045/leeds_humanities_research_institute/2718/leeds_voices_communicating_superdiversity). We are now also working through a series of four impact partnerships with library and heritage groups on the Isle of Bute in Scotland and across regional libraries and communities based in York, Leeds and Wakefield in England. Working with staff at Rothesay Library, Argyll and Bute Council Local Studies Department, local community partners and residents we are supporting the creation of an online archive, and a suite of digital stories addressing contemporary island challenges. We are working with Wakefield Library and Museum and local history groups including the Friends of Ossett Library to draw on collections of existing materials such as Twixt Aire and Calder http://www.twixtaireandcalder.org.uk and We Will Remember Them http://www.wakefield.gov.uk/residents/libraries-and-local-history/local-and-family-history/we-will-remember-them to develop local stories. We are also focusing on the content of the now defunct HLF-funded CommaNET (Community Archive Network) project which created software specifically for local community and family archiving. We are helping integrate existing resources and adding the content of the redundant CommaNET project to YARN to stimulate a local storytelling and public engagement project based on the legacy of these two projects and to develop the use and subsequent growth of these resources as the library develops its digital offer to users. We are also working to develop new communities and hard to reach citizens through Local History resources with Leeds City Library. This project builds on the existing local history resources held by Leeds City Library and Archives to develop new user communities within Leeds drawn from often isolated or hard to reach groups. Leeds has a particularly strong archive of historic photographs of Leeds housed on a working but elderly platform via www.leodis.net and currently contains some 60,000 images. This is a rich source of material for people to share reminiscences and comments and from which they would be able to develop their own research and interactive storytelling activities. The project use this content as the basis for building new relationships between the library and its users and offer training and support so that the resource can be utilised across regional branches and incorporated into its digital infrastructure. Our fourth current partnership is with Explore York, a fully integrated library, archive and museum. The project is in collaboration with a local co-operative, Blueberry Academy (http://www.blueberryacademy.co.uk), and engaging with a group of adults with learning difficulties to develop activities develop confidence and build skills in working with Explore York's archives and library content around the theme of local identity. We are also support Explore York in a twinning project with the city of Munster in Germany. (https://www.exploreyork.org.uk/the-york-munster-memory-book-project-1957-2017/)
First Year Of Impact 2016
Sector Communities and Social Services/Policy,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Policy & public services

 
Description AHRC AH/N001966/1 Co-Investigator Digital Tools in the Service of Difficult Heritage: How Recent Research Can Benefit Museums and their Audiences.
Amount £100,000 (GBP)
Funding ID AHRC AH/N001966/1 
Organisation Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 01/2016
 
Description Digital Community Workspaces
Amount £100,799 (GBP)
Funding ID AH/P005918/1 
Organisation Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 02/2017 
End 01/2018
 
Description Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Festival of Social Science 2014/Pararchive: Community Storytelling and the Digital Archive
Amount £1,250 (GBP)
Organisation Economic and Social Research Council 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2014 
End 12/2014
 
Description RCUK Digital Economy Theme, Sustainable Society Network+/Community-in-Residence: Digital heritage and access to museum collections
Amount £6,000 (GBP)
Organisation Imperial College London 
Department Sustainable Society Network+
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2014 
End 12/2014
 
Description RCUK Digital Economy Theme, Sustainable Society Network+/Island Stories: Growing Digital Heritage
Amount £50,000 (GBP)
Organisation Imperial College London 
Department Sustainable Society Network+
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2014 
End 12/2014
 
Description Using Digital Tools to Challenge Xenophobia and Support International Development in South Africa
Amount £99,973 (GBP)
Funding ID AH/P005268/1 
Organisation Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 10/2016 
End 06/2017
 
Description EPSRC: 2014-2015. Island Stories: Growing Digital Heritage - Pilot Project for Sustainable Society Network+ with Brandanii Archaeology http://www.discoverbutearchaeology.co.uk 
Organisation Brandanii Archaeology and Heritage
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Brandanii Archaeology were an initial community partner on the project and we developed a close working partnership which has led to further research funding and the subsequent Island Stories pilot project.
Collaborator Contribution They assisted in developing the application and worked as equal partners on the follow on project.
Impact A report for the funder. Publications are in process.
Start Year 2014
 
Description National Holocaust Centre & Museum 
Organisation National Holocaust Centre and Museum
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Paul Cooke and Rosie Wilkinson worked with James Griffiths (Director of Learning at the National Holocaust Centre (NHC)) and NHC educators Marion Hutchinson and Sarah Wetton, and also teachers and students from primary schools in Manchester and Nottingham, meeting regularly with schools individually over a period of 3 months to create a series of digital resources (Yarn stories), drawing from the NHC's collection and adding their own text, images and video. These Yarn stories contextualize a variety of historical material, chosen by the students in collaboration with their teachers, Griffiths and Cooke, and highlight the students" individual responses to this material.
Collaborator Contribution materials and room hire for workshop events, launch event and workshops; staff time (adding resources to Yarn, attending meetings, creating a Yarn-based scheme of work.which draws from stories created by the pupils and is designed to guide Primary School teachers through the topic of teaching the Holocaust.
Impact Pupils' Yarn stories: http://yarncommunity.org/stories/350 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/309 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/342 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/329 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/332 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/336 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/333 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/335 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/334 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/331 Yarn-based scheme of work for teaching the Holocaust in Primary schools, freely available at https://yarncommunity.org/stories/348 Museum visit and workshops Two films produced with/by pupils and posted on vimeo
Start Year 2016
 
Description Science Museum 
Organisation Science Museum Group
Department The Science Museum
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution James Starke and Rosemary Wilkinson worked with members of the North Leeds Veterans Breakfast Club (both of whom have forms of PTSD) to develop responses to the Science Museum's Exhibition 'Wounded: Conflict Casualties and Care', using the platform Yarn. This took place through a series of workshops and museum visits and culminated in a workshop at the Science Museum to consider digital engagement and co-production strategies.
Collaborator Contribution Exhibition Project Manager Lorraine Ward and Research and Public History Manager Alison Hess attended project meetings, facilitated a museum visit, added digital resources to the Yarn platform and discussed project strategy with Starke and Wilkinson.
Impact Four workshops and two museum visits. Yarn stories: http://yarncommunity.org/stories/311 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/361 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/362 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/374 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/368 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/360
Start Year 2016
 
Description Thackray Medical Museum 
Organisation Thackray Museum
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Laura King and Rosie Wilkinson collaborated with Lauren Ryall-Stockton, Curator at the Thackray Medical Museum (TMM) and Assistant Curator Catherine Robbins, as well as members of a Leeds-based Women's association (mostly made up of women from Afghanistan, Syrian, Iran and Egypt) who have experienced a range of birth outcomes. This part of the project will explored how digital materials can help expand the remit and coverage of the museum, to include the histories of difficult and fatal childbirths, but also to help the museum better profile a wide range of birth experiences. This is currently a challenge, because of the necessity for the museum to profile and use materials from its own collection. The resulting online exhibition, displayed on an interactive touchscreen within the museum's 'Having a Baby' gallery, combines materials from the museum"s archives with those contributed by workshop participants and other contributors. The project has helped the museum to engage with parents from diverse ethnic and religious background in areas in the museum"s immediate locality, who are not currently well represented in their visitor demographic. These activities will support the development of the Having a Baby gallery and has augmented the museum"s somewhat limited digital presence.
Collaborator Contribution Lauren Ryall-Stockton and Catherine Robbins helped to deliver a series of workshops and facilitate a museum visit for participants, provided handling objects from the TMM collection, produced digital resources on Yarn and Pinterest, helped to source and integrate a new touchscreen into the museum setting, contributed to project meetings and helped to devise a new 'project' feature for Yarn.
Impact - New 'Project' feature for Yarn - Interactive touchscreen feature added to TMM's 'Having a Baby' gallery, displaying coproduced digital content (Yarn stories). - Seven workshops and one museum visit - Two presentations to community groups and one public facing event. - Helping Thackray Medical Museum to demonstrate good practice and sustainable development in its application to the AHRC accreditation scheme for Museums. - Yarn stories: https://yarncommunity.org/stories/363 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/376 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/377 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/372 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/373 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/375 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/388 http://beta.pararchive.com/stories/338 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/328 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/325 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/323 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/320 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/298 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/366 https://yarncommunity.org/stories/330 http://yarncommunity.org/stories/297
Start Year 2016
 
Description Working with Junction Arts 
Organisation Junction Arts
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution We have partnered with Junction Arts to support their successful HLF bid to use our tools derived from the Pararchive Project to help them develop 40 story projects based on their history. See: http://junctionarts.org/2015/10/ja40/ Junction Arts are thrilled to announce that we have been awarded Heritage Lottery Funding of £19,200 for an exciting new project to celebrate our 40th Anniversary. JA40 is the name of the project and over the course of the next 18 months we will work with staff, artists and our project participants, past and present to catalogue our extensive archive. We will also gather oral histories at a series of special Tea Party events next summer and make a film that tells the Junction Arts story so far. In addition, we will be commissioning a piece of artwork that will take pride of place at our annual Lantern Parade in Bolsover in 2016 and develop an exhibition and talks programme that will take in venues around Derbyshire. We are thrilled to be working in partnership with the Derbyshire Record Office and the University of Leeds on this project that is so special to Junction Arts. It will enable us to reflect and celebrate our achievements and contextualise our work within the local area and wider community arts movement. It will also be an opportunity to share our fascinating history with the wider public.
Collaborator Contribution They will provide content for the new YARN platform and will use it to publish the 40 projects they are going to produce in 2016.
Impact Work is on-going and will be published over the coming year.
Start Year 2015
 
Title YARN 
Description YARN is an open web-based platform that facilities online collaborative storytelling , research, archiving and a workspace for creative practice. It is copyright free and was produced with the help of community organisations and institutional partners the Science Museum Group and BBC Archives. There are two information films available here: https://vimeo.com/156313120 https://vimeo.com/156313543 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2015 
Impact YARN is developing a range of partnerships and a growing body of users who are deploying it across a broad range of uses related to research, storytelling and creative practice. We are developing it as a public tools that can provide an open and non-institutional space in which people and organisations can work collaboratively and develop new uses and impacts. It has just been publicly launched and impact will be updated regularly as they develop. Initial impacts include: For citizens and communities it means that they can: 1. Tell stories, research cultural and historical themes, create collections, campaign and be creative; 2. Develop links with other people and other communities that share similar interests and concerns; 3. Develop community projects and host collections of community and personal materials including films, photographs and sound files; 4. Keep control of their own intellectual property (IP) by hot linking their own content from third party sites e.g., Historypin, Flickr and Facebook; 5. Explore stories and collections created by other users; 6. Showcase knowledge and personal expertise. For cultural organisations it means that they can: 1. Feature and promote their collections through the resource without IP transfer; 2. Have access to an open workspace that can create new links to complementary collections and crowd source public expertise; 3. Source content metadata and receive analytics about who is using your content; 4. Run curatorial or research projects and encourage community use of their digital collections. For researchers it means that they can access: 1. A set of tools through which to run community projects; 2. A place to feature projects and creative project archives; 3. A means of identifying communities they might want to work with; 4. A collaborative partnership with communities and cultural heritage organisations. 
URL http://yarncommunity.com
 
Title Yarn 'Project' feature 
Description With Yarn being employed for community storytelling research at the Thackray Medical Museum and the National Holocaust Centre, both of these project strands sought to add features to the core platform of Yarn that would enable them to be represented as distinct in the universe of Yarn content. Fundamentally, Yarn needs to be able to allow administrative users to create a Project and select stories from the Yarn universe which become part of that project's theme. This approach allows museums a level of curatorial control over Yarn content displayed within the museum or linked to their exhibitions, which was felt to be necessary, particularly with regard to sensitive and challenging heritage. A new Yarn project feature was commissioned from Carbon Imagineering (who built and maintain Yarn) which would enable all stories within a project to be presented on a unique home page for that project. New features comprised: • Setting up a Project, with metadata, including title, description and some banner images. • Adding existing Stories to a project. • Adding a Projects section to the Yarn home page. • Project home pages may be displayed on large touchscreens in museum installations; 
Type Of Technology Webtool/Application 
Year Produced 2016 
Impact This approach allows museums a level of curatorial control over Yarn content displayed within the museum or linked to their exhibitions, which was felt to be necessary, particularly with regard to sensitive and challenging heritage. A project page for the Birth Stories strand will be installed in Thackray Medical Museum's 'Having a Baby' gallery and will feature stories created with participants during the project and by members of the public. 
 
Description 'First came Pararchive, then came Yarn: Weaving a Connected Tapestry of Tales'. Department of Theatre, Film & Television. University of York, UK. 9th-10th April 2015/Invited Talk at the Digital Heritage Meets Interactive Storytelling Conference 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact There is strong interest in the use of Yarn (www.yarncommunity.com) both by academic research projects and public library and archive networks as a way to provide a safe and accessible space for different stakeholders to research and explore new ways of engaging with narratives, storytelling and creative practice.

There were signs that present audience members were interested in engaging with Yarn (www.yarncommunity.com) for their own research and creative practice.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://digitalheritagemeetsinteractivestorytelling.com/programme-dhis-conference/
 
Description 'Having a Baby' gallery visit and workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact Seven members of Bahar AFG Afghan Women's Association (accompanied by approximately ten children) visited Thackray Medical Museum's 'Having a Baby' gallery and a follow up Yarn workshop on 22nd October 2016. The women and children viewed a selection of Yarn stories based on their previous contributions (at workshops held at Lincoln Green Community Centre) and shared more birth stories from both their home countries and their time in the UK. Laura King, Rosie Wilkinson and Thackray Curator Lauren Ryall-Stockton worked with the group to demonstrate how their personal stories and images created by the children could be made into Yarn stories, resulting in a new co-produced story to publish online and feature on a touchscreen within the museum.

During this session, the stories shared ranged from light-hearted anecdotes to extremely personal and sometimes distressing accounts of miscarriages and traumatic births. Though some participants were uncertain about sharing these more negative experiences via Yarn stories in the museum, it was felt that the process of the workshops and the act of sharing stories had made significant impact in encouraging the women to open up about their experiences to share them verbally.

The group's leader provided the following feedback on the event and the series of workshops which had preceded it:
"Thank you for providing us with you're informative workshop about some of the issues women face. Some women are usually busy with their lives and families and dont go out much especially to museums and similar places. So this was a good opportunity for them all the experience somewhere new. I feel like the women at our group are embarrassed or shy to talk about their pregnancies or births or may have been raised in this way. I noticed throughout the workshop they started opening up and sharing some stories and experiences so it was kind of a barrier being broken down and a increase in confidence.
Also, they compared their home countries to England and how their hospitals deal with pregnancies and births. Some of the women had positive stories about their pregnancies and births were dealt with in terms of support however there was some ladies who weren't so happy about hospitals had dealt with their pregnancies and births. For example how in this generation, there are many choices along with pregnancy and birth however they were not granted these choices. Personally, i think this workshop was a very good idea, I would like our group to participate in workshops like this again. Once again, Thank you very much for inviting us to the Museum and for the amazing hospitality. The catering was very liked, the children also enjoyed it very much. We had a lot of workshops and visits in the past, but this one was different, new and very popular with the women so thank you for that."
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/388
 
Description 11 Community Technology Workshops with Brandanii Archaeology and Heritage Community Group, Bute, Rothesay, Scotland (November 2013-March 2015) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The community technology lab workshops provided a platform through which community group members drew on, added to and curated resources around shared cultural, historical and thematic interests and affinities drawn from a wider number of platforms and institutional sites to tell their stories through a co-produced new open 'access' digital resource that aims to facilitate engagement with and use of public archival material online. Some of the emergent and recurring stories revolved around archaeology, farming, conservation of natural resources and landscapes, wildlife, urban greening, history of family work and the creative industries, activism, young people and pottery, reminiscence and memory, digital and music heritage, and the exploration and digitisation of archives. At the end of each workshop we reflected on the conversations and activities undertaken, looked for recurrent patterns and connections in the stories told, assessed the sources from which artefacts had been drawn, discussed and planned activities for next workshops, monitored the research progress of each individual member, and offered support and encouragement where needed. Recent workshops have been structured around story-building exercises in a 'paper prototyping' process. The idea is that a story or an idea is broken into the smallest atomic element possible. Such elements can be in the form of a block or an event, information (metadata about dates, places, people), artefacts (which enrich/support the story e.g., photographs, audio-visual content) and connectors (that link the blocks/events together). It is from this input that the early interactive prototype of the digital resource has been developed and is currently being tested by members.

The running of community technology lab workshops had four-fold impact: First, community group members learnt that public cultural institutions were keen to open up the cultural assets in their archives to community groups that can use their knowledge and expertise to add value to such assets in order to ensure their on-going relevance, and that the Pararchive project as a whole more generally, and the technology lab workshops in particular, were an experiment towards achieving this goal. Second
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014,2015
URL http://pararchive.com/workshops/
 
Description 11 Community technology lab workshops with Ceramic City Stories Group, Stoke-on-Trent (still on-going) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The community technology lab workshops provided a platform through which community group members drew on, added to and curated resources around shared cultural, historical and thematic interests and affinities drawn from a wider number of platforms and institutional sites to tell their stories through a co-produced new open 'access' digital resource that aims to facilitate engagement with and use of public archival material online. Some of the emergent and recurring stories revolved around archaeology, farming, conservation of natural resources and landscapes, wildlife, urban greening, history of family work and the creative industries, activism, young people and pottery, reminiscence and memory, digital and music heritage, and the exploration and digitisation of archives. At the end of each workshop we reflected on the conversations and activities undertaken, looked for recurrent patterns and connections in the stories told, assessed the sources from which artefacts had been drawn, discussed and planned activities for next workshops, monitored the research progress of each individual member, and offered support and encouragement where needed. Recent workshops have been structured around story-building exercises in a 'paper prototyping' process. The idea is that a story or an idea is broken into the smallest atomic element possible. Such elements can be in the form of a block or an event, information (metadata about dates, places, people), artefacts (which enrich/support the story e.g., photographs, audio-visual content) and connectors (that link the blocks/events together). It is from this input that the early interactive prototype of the digital resource has been developed and is currently being tested by members.

The running of community technology lab workshops had four-fold impact: First, community group members learnt that public cultural institutions were keen to open up the cultural assets in their archives to community groups that can use their knowledge and expertise to add value to such assets in order to ensure their on-going relevance, and that the Pararchive project as a whole more generally, and the technology lab workshops in particular, were an experiment towards achieving this goal. Second, community group members not only learnt about how to search institutional archives more effectively and to repurpose archival material in a creative way to tell stories, but they fed back (and are still doing so) on their experiences, something that has contributed to the creation of knowledge beneficial to others. Third, the technology lab workshops have been instrumental in addressing crucial issues related to the idea of an open digital space, copyright and ownership, community use of cultural assets, self-representation and the potential not only to engage new online communities that would not traditionally engage with cultural institutions, but also to inform how the latter can facilitate public interaction with their assets more effectively. Lastly, we plan to construct the digital resource in two formats; one a centrally hosted open version free to all users, and the other, a takeaway open-source tool that community, education and public groups can use for specific research purposes and self-host. We will launch the resource with other associated archiving digital tools at the Pararchive Conference and Community Showcase more details of which can be accessed via the following link: http://pararchive.com/conference/
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
URL http://pararchive.com/workshops/
 
Description 6 Community technology lab workshops with Arduino Manchester Group (November 2013-March 2015) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The community technology lab workshops provided a platform through which community group members drew on, added to and curated resources around shared cultural, historical and thematic interests and affinities drawn from a wider number of platforms and institutional sites to tell their stories through a co-produced new open 'access' digital resource that aims to facilitate engagement with and use of public archival material online. Some of the emergent and recurring stories revolved around archaeology, farming, conservation of natural resources and landscapes, wildlife, urban greening, history of family work and the creative industries, activism, young people and pottery, reminiscence and memory, digital and music heritage, and the exploration and digitisation of archives. At the end of each workshop we reflected on the conversations and activities undertaken, looked for recurrent patterns and connections in the stories told, assessed the sources from which artefacts had been drawn, discussed and planned activities for next workshops, monitored the research progress of each individual member, and offered support and encouragement where needed. Recent workshops have been structured around story-building exercises in a 'paper prototyping' process. The idea is that a story or an idea is broken into the smallest atomic element possible. Such elements can be in the form of a block or an event, information (metadata about dates, places, people), artefacts (which enrich/support the story e.g., photographs, audio-visual content) and connectors (that link the blocks/events together). It is from this input that the early interactive prototype of the digital resource has been developed and is currently being tested by members.

The running of community technology lab workshops had four-fold impact: First, community group members learnt that public cultural institutions were keen to open up the cultural assets in their archives to community groups that can use their knowledge and expertise to add value to such assets in order to ensure their on-going relevance, and that the Pararchive project as a whole more generally, and the technology lab workshops in particular, were an experiment towards achieving this goal. Second
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014
URL http://pararchive.com/workshops/
 
Description 6 Community technology lab workshops with Bokeh_Yeah!, Manchester (DSLR-film-making group) (November 2013-March 2015) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact The community technology lab workshops provided a platform through which community group members drew on, added to and curated resources around shared cultural, historical and thematic interests and affinities drawn from a wider number of platforms and institutional sites to tell their stories through a co-produced new open 'access' digital resource that aims to facilitate engagement with and use of public archival material online. Some of the emergent and recurring stories revolved around archaeology, farming, conservation of natural resources and landscapes, wildlife, urban greening, history of family work and the creative industries, activism, young people and pottery, reminiscence and memory, digital and music heritage, and the exploration and digitisation of archives. At the end of each workshop we reflected on the conversations and activities undertaken, looked for recurrent patterns and connections in the stories told, assessed the sources from which artefacts had been drawn, discussed and planned activities for next workshops, monitored the research progress of each individual member, and offered support and encouragement where needed. Recent workshops have been structured around story-building exercises in a 'paper prototyping' process. The idea is that a story or an idea is broken into the smallest atomic element possible. Such elements can be in the form of a block or an event, information (metadata about dates, places, people), artefacts (which enrich/support the story e.g., photographs, audio-visual content) and connectors (that link the blocks/events together). It is from this input that the early interactive prototype of the digital resource has been developed and is currently being tested by members.

The running of community technology lab workshops had four-fold impact: First, community group members learnt that public cultural institutions were keen to open up the cultural assets in their archives to community groups that can use their knowledge and expertise to add value to such assets in order to ensure their on-going relevance, and that the Pararchive project as a whole more generally, and the technology lab workshops in particular, were an experiment towards achieving this goal. Second
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2013,2014,2015
URL http://pararchive.com/workshops/
 
Description Birth Stories Facebook Page 
Form Of Engagement Activity Engagement focused website, blog or social media channel
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact A Facebook page was created at : https://www.facebook.com/thackraybirthstories/ to promote the Thackray Medical Museum 'Birth Stories' strand of the project. This was, in part, a response to the realisation that many of the local migrant community groups the team was trying to engage were using Facebook to communicate and organise their activities. Following promotion at a Leeds 'Baby Week' event, and increased number of page 'like's and views, two people added stories to Yarn, in response to the project.

Page statistics as of 18th Nov 2016:
Total 'Like's: 67
Maximum post reach: 1,200
Maximum post engagement: 164
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://www.facebook.com/thackraybirthstories/
 
Description Birth Stories Workshops 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Laura King, Lauren-Ryall Stockton and Rosie Wilkinson held five workshops with an Afghan Women's Association (which meets in the Harehills area of Leeds, close to Thackray Medical Museum) on 23rd May and 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th June. Images and handling objects from the museum's collection were presented and made available and, over the weeks, the group shared stories, recollections, comparisons to UK life, etc. Participants originated mostly from Afghanistan but also Syria and Egypt, ranged in age from approx. 25 to 60 and had been resident in the UK for varying lengths of time. Participants with greater fluency in English translated for the group (in both directions and also helped to translate text on the back of one of the museum's artefacts (a cloth flipchart relating to childbirth) from Pashto to English, thereby adding considerably to TMM's knowledge about this object. King et al. demonstrated the use of Yarn by creating stories based on material shared by the group and proposed how TMM and audiences might use it to facilitate dialogue. The participants contributed to evaluation processes both formally (questionnaire) and informally (responding verbally to questions, in conversation). Through this feedback they attested, almost unanimously that they were subsequently very likely to visit TMM (whilst previously very unlikely), that they felt they had shared information which was important to them and that the project had made them think differently about opportunities for digital engagement with museums. The research team was subsequently invited to the group's forthcoming Eid party, in order to continue discussions and plan a group visit to TMM.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/338
 
Description Black Health Initiative Presentation 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Laura King and Rosie Wilkinson made a presentation of the Birth Stories project strand at a 'World Fusion Cafe' event organised by local organisation Black Health Initiative on 16th March. The social event was attended by approx. 40 local residents, most of whom were retired, Afro-Caribbean migrants. A selection of handling objects from Thackray Medical Museum's collection were presented and discussed, along with the project aims of sharing stories, engaging diverse audiences and creating opportunities for dialogue. Several attendees expressed an interest and engaged with the objects but this did not lead to the recruitment of workshop participants. However, the visit was of benefit by suggesting a realignment of the recruitment strategy (i.e. identifying a suitable group and taking workshops to them, rather than inviting participants to workshops at TMM).
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Conference Presentation/Archives 2.0 - Saving the Past, Anticipating the Future/26 November 2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact This talk highlighted the significance of community-Institutional relationships in harnessing heritage resources through unlocking their economic potential and socio-cultural value as well as attempting to conserve them for posterity.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.nationalmediamuseum.org.uk/Collection/ArchivesConference
 
Description Conference Presentation/Challenging Media Landscapes: Cultures and Industries of Creativity in Contemporary Media Landscapes/16 November 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This talk addressed some of the key issues around the co-curation of cultural heritage in the digital age and how this presents new opportunities to exploit our shared heritage, particularly through creative practice and research.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://salfordmediafestival.co.uk/
 
Description Conference Presentation/Digital Research in the Humanities and Arts 2014/University of Greenwich/31 August 2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact This conference presentation explored current progress of the co-design process at the time with a particular focus on the interaction between institutional authority, copyright and concepts of the virtual space.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://www.drha2014.co.uk/
 
Description Digital Tools Workshop February 29th 2016, University of Leeds 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This was a workshop based around the use of the YARN tools developed from the Pararchive to build story projects and research portfolios for Museum audiences and school children dealing with traumatic and difficult subjects such as disability, war, the holocaust and childbirth.
Project with three groups of professionals:

Curators from the Science Museum
Curators from the National Holocaust Centre
Teachers from Primary Schools in Bradford and Nottingham
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Filmmaking workshops 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Paul Cooke and Rosie Wilkinson led film-making workshops at Edna G Olds Academy (17th May 2016) and Webster Primary (27th May). Pupils were introduced to the themes of the project strand involving The National Holocaust Centre and shown materials collated on Yarn. Time was spent developing interview techniques and discussing identity (focused around key objects selected by the pupils) before filming the pupils interviews in groups. The activity prepared pupils for their subsequent visit to the National Holocaust Centre (particularly the element of the trip which involved hearing a Holocaust Survivor's testimony and asking them questions) and also yielded film footage for the pupils to add to their Yarn stories.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://vimeo.com/170095098
 
Description Gallery Exhibition/Curious Encounters with Objects from Past, Present and Future-Leeds/26 February 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact This exhibition event provided a platform for the Pararchive project to test the functionality of the co-designed digital resource whilst in its earliest beta versions. To this end, members of the general public were invited to trial the resource and provide any feedback about functionality.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL https://library.leeds.ac.uk/events/410/event/275/
 
Description Holocaust education and Yarn workshops 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Paul Cook and Rosie Wilkinson led a selection of activities at Edna G Olds academy (20th June) and Webster Primary school (11th July) to lead a selection of activities building on the pupils' visit to the National Holocaust Centre. Pupils were also taught to use Yarn, enabling them to create stories featuring their work over the course of the day and subsequent activity week. Pupils at each school presented their Yarn stories to the rest of the school at a special assembly, at the end of the week. Yarn offered an effective way for teachers and pupils to collate, present and share the result of all of their Holocaust education activities from that term.

The Yarn stories were subsequently combined and shared with the National Holocaust Centre who were able to draw on them to produce a Yarn-based scheme of work for teaching the Holocaust in primary schools.


The National Holocaust Centre is currently in talks the Shoah foundation about becoming the UK hub for its platform IWitness. As a result of the work on Yarn, NHC have proposed a further funding bid for a project which would link the use of Yarn (particularly to share best practice and 'schemes of work' with schools) with resources available through IWitness.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/350
 
Description Launch Event 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Launch event at University of Leeds, 29/02/16: Attended by the project's researchers, museum collaborators and teachers from participating schools. Participants learnt about the background of the project and were introduced to the digital storytelling tool 'Yarn', before having a chance to experiment with Yarn and make plans for each stage of the project, as well as identifying their main aims. Collaborators were enthusiastic about the possibilities Yarn presented and were able to suggest how activities might be structured to help achieve their aims. One team created a Yarn story to use in workshops and for recruiting participants.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Leeds Maternity Strategy Event 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact On 15th Sept 2016 Laura King, Rosie Wilkinson and Catherine Robbins (Assistant Curator, Thackray Medical Museum) presented a stall at a Leeds Maternity Strategy Event as part of Leeds Baby Week. The event was attended by public service users and health professionals. King et al. chatted to attendees about the Birth Stories project and gave out flyers inviting people to contribute stories on Yarn for inclusion in Thackray's 'Having a Baby' gallery. People we spoke to took flyers to share with colleagues and new parents they encounter through their work and also suggested a range of local support groups who might be interested in getting involved. These groups were contacted through social media channels, as a consequence and two people added birth stories to Yarn.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Migrant Access Project Community Networkers Drop-in 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Third sector organisations
Results and Impact Thackray Medical Museum Curator Lauren Ryall-Stockton and Rosie Wilkinson attended this drop-in session on 19th April, aimed at leaders of migrant community groups, to present the aims of this strand of the project and gauge interest in participation. The attendees were able to provide insights into the types of groups who might wish to participate and also the ways the groups run and communicate. As a consequence of this engagement with Migrant Access Project, it was possible to arrange a series of workshops with a local Afghan Women's Association, thereby furthering Thackray Museum's aim of engaging more ethnically diverse and hard to reach audiences in it's vicinity.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Pararchive Showcase at the Cardiff Connected Communities Festival, July 2014/ GLADSTONE 2013 FIRED UP! Film & Workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact This film and workshop session featured GLADSTONE 2013 FIRED UP! - a year-long community project that culminated in a performance celebrating the pottery industry of Stoke-on-Trent. It wove together archive film and materials held by Gladstone Pottery Museum with original poetry, music and dance, thereby demonstrating the overarching ethos of the Pararchive project, namely to merge personal and community ephemera with archival items and materials from memory institutions to tell stories about the past and local heritage. Fired up! - the film (58 minutes) included interviews with the museum's demonstrators and some of the volunteers who saved the site from bulldozers over forty years ago. It also showed the firing of the Firehand, created by international ceramicist Wali Hawes, at the Spode site of the British Ceramics Biennial in Stoke. Fired up! was followed by the Cogs in the machine workshop, a fragment of the original performance. It wass based on the 1848 Scriven Report which investigated the conditions of child workers in the Potteries. It included sections of film and the chance to create original music, poetry and dance.

Both the film and workshop triggered conversations about what life was like as a child potter by dressing up, creating actions and composing sound effects. Attendees were invited to engage in the workshop activities and exercise through using movements from the factory machines, original quotes and role play to inspire a performance exploring the lives of Victorian children working in the Potteries. Although this session was conceived as suitable for KS1 and KS2 students, it was apparent that all ages enjoyed taking part in the workshop.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Pararchive Showcase at the Cardiff Connected Communities Festival, July 2014/Break-out Session 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact This session introduced the research project, Pararchive: Open Access Community Storytelling and the Digital Archive, whose main aim is to create an open 'access' digital resource that allows people to easily access material held in public archives (like those of the BBC or the Science Museum). The session included a short film screening of Strike Stories (a previous project with the BBC) as well as presentations about on-going research storytelling projects currently being conducted by selected Pararchive community group partners including Ceramic City Stories - a heritage group in Stoke-on-Trent, and Brandanii Archaeology and Heritage - another heritage group from the Isle of Bute, Rothesay, Scotland. The former told stories that highlightrd and celebrated the identity of the potteries and the ceramic city while the latter shared stories that connected cultures, histories and landscapes between the Isle of Bute and Cardiff, primarily as a result of the Bute Family link respectively. Also, this session explored the ways in which collections in national museums can be accessed by local community groups using the Science Museum, London as an example. The ensuing discussion revolved around how national museums can become more accessible to the public, particularly through embracing digital technologies to facilitate an open and meaningful engagement with cultural artefacts and materials of relevance to communities and the wider public. The session closed with conversations in which attendees shared their own experiences and reflections on their work on similar collaborative research projects.

The session triggered a two-fold impact: First, there was increased connectivity amongst the different members of the Pararchive project. For example, our contingent comprised fifteen individuals many of whom met for the first time in person. Representatives from the project's community groups and institutional partners, our technology partners as well as the core research team got to know each other better and discussed scope for working together beyond the conclusion of Pararchive in March 2015.
Second, Pararchive received a number of requests regarding collaborations and partnerships. For example, we received an invitation to add our project to the Connected Communities Media Collection. Following the session, we also received queries from a couple of academics and new community groups requesting bid for grants jointly.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
URL http://ccmc.commedia.org.uk/resource/pararchive-introduction/
 
Description Pararchive Showcase at the Cardiff Connected Communities Festival, July 2014/MadLab Micro 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact MadLab Micro (MM) - an interactive digital installation presented by MadLab, a partner on the Pararchive project - was an on-site festival creative zone that comprised a participatory celebration of "hacking" culture for festival-goers and the general public alike. MM was informed by the understanding that Hacking - "creative re-/misappropriation" - is pervasive amongst MadLab's 50+ community groups. MM demonstrated to the public what Hacking can make possible: creating new digital tools and artworks from low cost or scavenged toys and gadgetry; remixing and upcycling clothing to create one-off pieces better than the sum of their parts; or even biohacking - co-opting the stuff of life for new purposes, from fermentation to personal DNA forensics. In the wider world, MM highlighted, the "hacking" ethos has been applied to anything from furniture (e.g. "IKEA hacking") to food ("Ramen hacking") and lots more besides.

Many festival-goers became aware of the benefits of hacking-both from an individual and organisational point of view and expressed interest in learning more about how to experiment with some things in a radically new way with little risk.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Pararchive Talk and Film Screening at the Rusholme Festival of Ideas November 2014 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact The talk stimulated attendees to think about how they could document the rich heritage of Rusholme using photographs and the uniquely situated environment and landscape to tell their past. There was a general consensus that the discussions and conversations needed to be continued under a tentative banner or slogan entitled "Curating Rusholme". After the talk and workshop, there was a realisation that the evolution of Rusholme presented a great opportunity to harness the ever increasing diversity of the district to tell the social history of the resident communities.

We - the Pararchive team - identified wide scope of working together with the Rusholme resident communities, particularly in the form of helping to promote the heritage of this area using the digital platform and tools we are co-producing. We had a chance to speak to a number of residents who are passionate about telling both their personal and community stories revolving around working and living in Rusholme over the past decades. Some of the residents have accumulated collections in their homes comprising rare photographs and items that tell stories of what Rusholme and the surrounding neighbourhoods used to be, what events took place, who was involved and how much the district has evolved. As a result of these conversations, we felt there are fascinating stories and research to be conducted especially around the connection between place, events and people based on residents' lived experiences and memories. We are working towards applying for funding to be able to realise this undertaking.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2014
 
Description Re-thinking Challenging History 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Laura King and Lauren Ryall Stockton gave a presentation about the project at 'Re-thinking Challenging History' conference, Cardiff University / National Museum of Cardiff, June 2016.

Rachael Connelly (Imperial War Museum North) explained that IWMN are currently redeveloping their Holocaust education and expressed an interest in the Yarn stories relating to the National Holocaust Centre strand of the project. Laura King subsequently shared these with her.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Re-visiting the Romany Collection at Special Collections, University of Leeds 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Members of several Yorkshire-based Gypsy and Traveller families, and Leeds GATE (Gypsy and Traveller Exchange), attended workshops to explore the University's 'Romany Collection' and improve on catalogue descriptions for items therein. Examples of comments and observations from this activity were used to create two Yarn stories (at https://yarncommunity.org/stories/389 and https://yarncommunity.org/stories/402), to bring the collection to a wider audience and invite other members of the public to add notes and enrich understanding of the collection. The second Yarn story includes an item from the British Pathe archive, demonstrating how the Yarn platform can facilitate research, help users to collate diverse resources and help uncover hidden histories. One other consequence of the workshops was the production of a short film, which aims to encourage more people to take an interest in the vast collection of papers, photographs and artwork currently housed at the Brotherton Library in the University of Leeds. A Yarn story (https://yarncommunity.org/stories/554) was also used to crowd-source information, thoughts and reflections to form part of an exhibition of paintings and drawings selected by Yorkshire-based Gypsy and Traveller families to feature in a special exhibition, "Rights and Romance," which will open in March 2018 at the University of Leeds. It is hoped that using the platform in this way will help to achieve the aims of facilitating two-way exchange between archive organisations and audiences and democratising the possibilities for archive resources to be used in creating narratives.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://library.leeds.ac.uk/news/article/389/romany_collection_film_unveiled
 
Description School Inset/training day 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact The National Holocaust Centre held a workshop on 30th Sept 2016 as part of one school's inset training day, using Yarn to introduce schemes of work for primary settings, developed as a response to work with schools during the project and also drawing on Yarn stories produced by pupils during the project. Teachers provided the following feedback on Yarn and this method of sharing the schemes of work:

- Great idea of having all the resources in the same place available any time.
- Really well pitched with regards to signposting to key resources.
- Yarn is a fantastic tool and I think teachers will use it as a resource.
- The ideas behind Yarn are very well thought out.
- Children able to improve their ICT skills while learning.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/348
 
Description Schools visit to National Holocaust Centre 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Paul Cooke and Rosie Wilkinson attended the National Holocaust Centre on 8th June, along with pupils of Edna G Olds Academy and Webster Primary. Cooke and Wilkinson filmed aspects of the visit, including testimony from Holocaust survivor Susi Bechhöfer and her responses to questions from the pupils. Resulting footage was made available to the schools to use in the creation of Yarn stories and, ultimately exhibition materials for NHC's new Media Centre. The visit also consolidated links between the Centre and the two school and the learning experience led to further digital engagement through Yarn.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://vimeo.com/171206882
 
Description Science Museum CPD workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Jamie Starke and Rosie Wilkinson organised the workshop 'Wounded: Alternative Narratives of Conflict, Casualties and Care' at the Science Museum on 20th Oct 2016. The event was attended by the two members of Leeds North Veterans Breakfast club who had participated in previous project activities, as well as thirteen delegates from the museums sector. Eight museums were represented, in total, including the Science Museum and Thackray Medical Museum. The workshop featured an introduction to Yarn, an explanation of the process for this project strand and a presentation, by participants, of the stories they had created in response. Delegates also visited the 'Wounded' exhibition before taking part in a discussion session regarding the effectiveness of using free digital tools such as Yarn to engage audiences with difficult heritage and co-produce and co-curate content. One participant commented that Yarn stories provided an effective way to close the broken feedback loop referred to by Nina Simon (Simon 2011, p. 20)*.

Ruth Quinn, who attended from Wakefield's Mental Health Museum subsequently got in touch to enquire about the possibility of future collaboration using Yarn.

Participants made the following comments on feedback forms:
o All participants regarding yarn as a useful tool for engagement
o Most of the museum representatives said that they would consider using Yarn in their future work.
o "Potential for different forms of engagement and collaboration"
o "Yarn has an amazing future ahead!"
o "There needs to be space for story-making, as well as story-telling, in museums"

* Simon, N., 'Participatory Design and the Future of Museums', in Bill Adair, Benjamin Filene and Laura Koloski (eds), Letting Go? Sharing Historical Authority in a User-Generated World (Philadelphia:Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, 2011), pp. 18-33.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Symposium Presentation/Public Humanities: Stories of Collaboration between Citizens and Academics/University of Nottingham/6 November 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact This paper discussed co-design processes and tools developed on the Pararchive project between November 2013 and March 2015. The gist of the talk was to highlight how different stakeholders come work together around shared agendas and affinities to contribute to harnessing heritage resources in the digital age.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://dhapraxis.wp.horizon.ac.uk/
 
Description Tools you can Trust?: co-designing the YARN community resources and the Pararchive project/Invited Talk at Department of Theatre, Film & Television. University of York, UK. January 2015 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact The presentation triggered strong interest in the use of Yarn (www.yarncommunity.com) both by academic research projects and public library and archive networks as a way to provide a safe and accessible space for different stakeholders to research and explore new ways of engaging with narratives, storytelling and creative practice.

There was a sense that the demonstration of Yarn resonated with many members of the audience who seemed to relate to a publicly accessible space in which themselves and the wider public could interact with their heritage and other associated resources to ensure their ongoing relevance in different ways.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
 
Description Tools you can trust? Co-design in community heritage work/Invited talk at Digital archive innovations for a connected heritage: A game of semantic snakes & ladders?-Northumbria University 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Other academic audiences (collaborators, peers etc.)
Results and Impact Audience members showed strong interest in the use of Yarn (www.yarncommunity.com) as a platform to research and explore new ways of engaging with narrative, storytelling and creative practice.

There was a sense that the demonstration of Yarn resonated with many members of the audience who seemed to relate to a publicly accessible space in which themselves and the wider public could interact with heritage and other associated resources to ensure their ongoing relevance in different ways.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2015
URL http://www.eventbrite.com/e/digital-archive-innovations-for-a-connected-heritage-a-game-of-semantic-...
 
Description Using Digital Tools to Engage Difficult Heritage 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Professional Practitioners
Results and Impact Museum professionals, public sector service providers, community group representatives, software developers and academics from a range of disciplines attended a workshop on 8th December at which the research team gave an account of its activities and findings and engaged delegates in discussions around key questions raised by the project and potential next steps. Alongside this activity several delegates also took part in filmed interviews to evaluate the event, comment on potential impact and highlight further areas of interest. Delegates shared knowledge and expertise and contributed to a number of in-depth discussions, key aspects of which will be captured in a forthcoming briefing document and an academic publication(s). Opportunities for further collaboration using the Yarn platform were also identified. Attendees commented that the event provided a good opportunity to develop useful networks and consider case studies and examples of best practice as well as positive feedback on the potential for using Yarn in their own work, whilst suggesting useful ways in which the platform might be developed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Visit to 'Recovery' exhibition 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact On 3rd October 2016 Jamie Starke and Rosie Wilkinson visited Thackray Medical Museum's 'Recovery' exhibition, along with two members of Leeds North Veterans Breakfast Club, in order to draw comparisons with aspects of the Science Museum's 'Wounded' exhibition and consider, further, how digital engagement might compliment (or detract) from the museum experience. Following this series of workshops, the two participants created three Yarn stories which they subsequently presented at a workshop at the Science Museum attended by numerous museum professionals, including key representatives from the Science Museum and Thackray Medical Museum. One of the participants found that the experience of trying to create a personal Yarn story triggered some of her PTSD symptoms but decided to work together with the other participant and create less personal stories, including one which focused specifically on museum's safeguarding responsibilities in regard to collaborative history-making, such as signposting sources of medical help and support.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/385
 
Description Visit to 'Wounded' exhibition 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact Jamie Starke and Rosie Wilkinson visited the Science Museum's 'Wounded' exhibition, along with two members of Leeds North Veterans Breakfast Club on 19th September 2016. The exhibition's Project Manager, Lorraine Ward, provided an introduction to the exhibition. Both participants took part in discussion after viewing the exhibition and reflected on ways Yarn might be used to respond to it. For instance, the participants expressed views about the structure of the exhibition ("why didn't they put that bit THERE, instead of there") and in doing so anticipated one of our suggestions and hoped for outcomes, this being that Yarn might be an effective way of allowing audiences to re-curate exhibitions digitally.

Both participants agreed to attend a follow-up CPD event at the Science Museum on 20th Oct, attended by other museum professionals from various institutions. Plans were made for a further workshop for the participants and a visit to Thackray Medical Museum's 'Recovery' exhibition.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
 
Description Webster Primary Assembly 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Paul Cook and Rosie Wilkinson attended a celebration assembly at Webster Primary school on 15th July 2016. Pupils used Yarn to present their work on WW2 and the Holocaust. The assembly was also attended by National Holocaust Centre Educator Sarah Wetton, to strengthen links formed through the school's visit to NHC and digital engagement through Yarn.
- One outcome of these activities is that pupils' poems have been featured in the Reception of NHC.
- As a result of reading the Yarn stories created by school pupils in response to this strand of the project, Researcher and Filmmaker Romana Turina added three Yarn stories relating to 'hidden' history of the Holocaust: http://beta.pararchive.com/users/Romana-Turina.
- School teachers, pupils and NHC staff provided the following feedback on the project and Yarn:

Teacher feedback:
- Intuitive design, very easy to use
- Gives a polished finish
- Tablet friendly (a bonus given that these are increasingly used in classrooms)
- An effective way of linking to material on other platforms used by the school (YouTube, Twitter) and assembling content created on commonly used apps like iMovie.

Teacher suggestions
- Make picture captions more visible (so that the reader doesn't have to click on 'item details')
- Introduce Yarn at the beginning of a workshop series, so that participants can add content as they go, rather than retrospectively.

National Holocaust Centre feedback (Sarah Wetton):
- Yarn stories offer a great window onto how the Holocaust is being taught in primary schools and how a visit to NHC might fit into this.
- Quoting schools' stories may be an effective way of sharing examples of best practice, reaching new target audiences and making teaching of this difficult subject seem more feasible. [NB: this strategy was subsequently used to create and share a scheme of work].

Pupil feedback
Which bit of the project did you like best?
- Speaking to Suzi and other Holocaust survivors; hearing their stories
- Visiting Westminster Abbey
- Writing poems

What was the most difficult part of the project?
- Presenting the assembly
- Speaking to the camera when making films

Did any aspect of the project surprise you?
- Delivering lines well in assembly after struggling in rehearsals
- Learning that others have had to survive without all of the things I have

Why should we learn about the Holocaust?
- To stop the same things happening again
- To stop people abusing their power
- To inspire us to realise our own ability to create a positive future

That did you like best about Yarn?
- Being able to assemble everything we've done (i.e. work, trips, workshops etc.)
- Being able to assemble different types of media (especially video)
- "Awesome" to be able to add your own content
Can you think of other possible uses for Yarn?
- Presentations and assemblies
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/342
 
Description Wounded workshop 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Study participants or study members
Results and Impact Jamie Starke and Rosie Wilkinson led an introductory workshop for participants in the Science Museum's strand of the project on 8th September 2016. Three members of Leeds North Veterans Breakfast Club attended and others expressed an interest in taking part in future events. Participants shared stories and experiences, learnt about Yarn and discussed their aims for participation. Afterwards, one participant (a PTSD sufferer) told us that she had discussed her involvement in the project with her therapist and that they had decided, together, that making notes and writing down thoughts in Yarn (without publishing them) might be an effective strategy for dealing with PTSD symptoms.*

Two of the three participants agreed to take part in a follow-up visit to the Science Museum's 'Wounded' exhibition.

* Unfortunately, this strategy proved to be counter productive for the participant, as the creation of very personal stories actually triggered some PTSD symptoms, but an alternative approach of working together with another participant to create joint stories provided an effective alternative.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016
URL https://yarncommunity.org/stories/362