A Digital Scrapbook is the contribution from Leeds Library and Information Service to the SCL Digital War Memorial Project.
The Leeds project is based on an item from our collections held in the Central Library This is a scrapbook put together by Edith Cliff when she was the matron at Gledhow Hall during the First World War when it was used as a military hospital. The scrapbook includes memorabilia not only associated with the war but also the activities of the hospital which focussed on the rehabilitation of the soldiers post trauma and injury. These activities included poetry, needlecraft, photography, sports activities, concerts and drama performances.
The project has been working with three different groups to explore the themes within the book and get their interpretation of the book. One group at Chapel Allerton Library have been focusing on the local history and interpreting the timeline of the scrapbook, a second group have produced new creative writing as a response to it and the third group have produced craft work both individually and as a group. The project has included taking the scrapbook back to Gledhow Hall and reading pieces from it there as well as having the original book digitised.
The Digital War Memorial is a project led by the Society of Chief librarians. It brings together a wide range of communities to work with high quality artists to create their own unique creative response to the First World War Centenary. Using the rich resources of local libraries and archives as the starting point, the new artworks tell diverse stories of how the First World War touched people’s lives and how it is remembered today. From 2014 to 2018 we hope to see projects across the whole country that will cumulate into a truly national memorial for our times.