Can you help? Reflections of Newcastle 1914-1918

Reflections of Newcastle 1914-18 is a Lit & Phil collaboration with Northumbria University, Newcastle College and November Club to explore the intellectual, cultural and social life of Newcastle during the First World War, concentrating in and around the Lit & Phil. The research will be developed into a city centre trail beginning and ending at the Lit & Phil through the creation of an interactive eBook. This eBook will be promoted to community groups, schools and visitors as a historical and educational tool and creative project to help people explore the city and its historical buildings and areas of interest in relation to World War 1, as well as the Lit & Phil itself.

We have now recruited a part-time Project Manager, Ben Jones, to oversee the project. We have also recruited several Lit & Phil members who are undertaking research alongside interns from Northumbria University on various themes, and students from Newcastle College are working alongside November Club on the digital and creative design aspects of the project. The work the volunteers and interns are doing not only supports the project but is enhancing and developing their research, creative and digital skills.

The eBook will be launched on 1 July 2016, marking the centenary of the beginning of the Battle of the Somme alongside installations and performances, by November Club, based on the research findings. Further updates on the project will appear as more and more information and material is uncovered.

If you would like to find out more about the project and opportunities for you to help, either as a researcher or in another capacity there is plenty of time. Please contact Ben Jones on bjones@litandphil.org.uk for more information on the project. His usual day of work at the Lit & Phil is Wednesday so please feel free to drop in for a chat about the project or email at any time.

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The Blog is Back

Now that our new website is live we thought it was  time to revive the Blog which has been dormant for some time…..

Details of our autumn programme will be coming your way soon, as well as more information about August’s postcard exhibition and our exciting First World War project, Reflections of Newcastle 1914-1918. Watch this space.

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Busy Thursday

It as been incredibly busy here today……two Literature Classes were running through the day, there was a meeting of the Seven Stories Writers and Artists Group, and tonight we have a lecture in conjunction with Newcastle College (the first in a series), as well as  the launch of the Brain Box exhibition. Not to mention the weekly meeting of the Recorded Music Society later. We’ve also had groups of students in, bookbinders and lots of other members and visitors! It’s all go!

The Brain Box exhibition is the result of a collaborative project in which over 40 individuals affected by Parkinson’s disease express their innermost thoughts and feelings by creating a piece of art work. The ‘canvas’ for their work is a small, white, wooden box and the media used include words, photos, textiles, drawings and everyday items. Inspiration came from artist Joseph Cornell (1903-1972) and the project and exhibition has been supported by Arts Council England. Come along if you can. The exhibition is free and runs until the end of October.

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Books on Tyne Mini Book Festival is Live!

After months of preparation, we can now announce the line-up for Books on Tyne, Newcastle’s mini Book Festival, organised by the Lit & Phil and Newcastle Libraries. Hopefully there’s something for everyone in the programme (www.booksontyne.co.uk) – from crime writing and  poetry to the meditations on River Tyne. We’re delighted that our long-standing working relationship with Newcastle Libraries has resulted in what we think will be a fabulous literary  long-weekend (even if we do say so ourselves).  Have a look at the programme and book your tickets WITHOUT DELAY!

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Stories in the Library

Heritage Open Days are in full swing here. We couldn’t manage to participate as much as we do without our team of volunteer guides leading library tours. They are brilliant! We’ve also been working with some members of SSWAG (Seven Stories Writers and Artists Group) over the last two days. They have given their time to read stories to under 5s in our small but perfectly formed children’s library. It was lovely to see (and hear) the goings-on today. We must do it more often.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

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New Season Begins

It really is this week that our new season of events begins. Tonight we are hosting the first of three British Science Festival events –  a lecture given by Matt Ridley: Coal, Steam, Slavery and the Greening of the Planet: Fossil Fuels 1713-2013. Tomorrow and Wednesday we have Lumen, a new performance especially written for the Festival, all about Joseph Swan.

The annual Heritage Open  Days events run here from Thursday to Saturday, with a series of free guided tours on offer, children’s storytelling sessions and a lecture on Miners’ Banners. Throw in a discussion about the world of real vs. fictional policing, and you can see how busy it is going to be.

Speaking of policing,  we hope you managed to stay up and watch Vera last night….at last we saw the results of last year’s filming. The sequences were short and sweet but did remind us what a fantastic building the Lit & Phil is.

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EAT! at the Lit & Phil

Our normally plain and sober Lecture Room has been transformed into a Speakeasy/Literary Salon, as part of NewcastleGateshead’s EAT!, a festival celebrating food and drink. It’s amazing what the team have done, so if you get the chance please  come along to one of the events before the salon is no more. http://www.newcastlegateshead.com/eat-festival

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