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In Leeds. Why not visit our exhibition at the Royal Armouries?
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Object of the Fortnight-09/10/2014- Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp Collages This week blog looks at the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp. There are many items in the museum’s collection which cover this event. However, today’s blog will discuss the beautiful collection of collages depicting the Greenham Common Women’s Peace Camp. History of the Peace Camp The peace camp was established to protest the nuclear weapons at RAF Greenham Common in Berkshire. It was established in September 1981 after a Welsh group called ‘Women for Life on Earth’, went to Greenham to protest against the decision of the British government to allow cruise missiles to be based there. One of the most famous events for the camp occurred in April 1983. Almost 70,000 protesters formed a 14 mile human chain from Greenham to Aldermaston. Then in December 1983 around 50,000 women encircled the base. This led to sections of the fence being cut and hundreds were arrested. The museum has a display in the main gallery which explains the story of Greenham Common, including a piece of the original fence. The Camp only closed in 2000 to make way for the Commemorative and Historic Site on the land that housed the original Women’s Peace Camp at Yellow Gate Greenham Common between the years 1981 – 2000. The Collages The museum has a collection of collages representing the events of Greenham Common. Each one of them features a different time during the Peace Camp and were created by Daphne Morgan. Three of these colourful collages are currently on display in the museums main gallery along with other items relating to the peace camp so come visit the museum to view them! The first one shows the peace camp in October 1981, a month after it was established. In the collage you can see that many tents and signs have already being put up by the women. (See image) The second one then moves on to September 1982 and shows protestors being evicted by the police. (See image) Finally the third one shows a snowy scene from December 1983, three years into the peace camp and shows a group of women sat around a camp fire. (See image)
By Charlotte Hall
Charlotte joined The Peace Museum in May 2014 as a collections intern and is now working as a museum assistant. Charlotte has been leading a location audit of the collections and has helped install and research objects in the newly developed WW1 gallery. Charlotte is studying a Masters in Museum and Art Gallery Studies at the University of Manchester.
OBJECT OF THE FORTNIGHT- 27/08/2014 As the month of August comes to an end, the object of the fortnight has being chosen in remembrance of the 1945 Atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In the museum collection there are many different items relating around the anti-nuclear theme. This blog will give examples of some of the main ones. A Bit of History The United States used the bombs against Japan during the final stages of World War Two. The first bomb was dropped on Hiroshima on August 6th 1945 and just a few days later, Nagasaki was bombed. This was the first and only time atomic bombs have been used in warfare. On August 14th Japan surrendered to the allies and signed the ‘instrument of surrender’ ending World War Two. The effects Around 30% of Nagasaki, including almost all the industrial district was destroyed by the bomb and nearly 74,000 were killed and a similar number injured. In Hiroshima, more than 60% of the buildings were destroyed. Japanese figures at the time put the death toll at 118,661. However, later on estimates suggest that the final toll was around 140,000 of Hiroshima's 350,000 population. This also included military personnel and those who died later from radiation. The effects of the atomic bombs are still being dealt with today as residents from both cities are still suffering the physical and mental consequences of radiation. A previous blog ‘Refurbished Temporary Exhibition Area & Object of the Fortnight 11/06/2014’ covers one of the more unique pieces in the collection - a piece of a roof tile from a building in Nagasaki. If you wish to view this it is currently on display in the temporary exhibition area of the museum and the blog is still available to read on our website. The Anti-Nuclear movement The Anti- Nuclear cause has been taken on by many different groups. One of the main ones is Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, (CND). Their symbol has become almost universally acknowledged as the main symbol for peace. The ‘CND campaigns non-violently to achieve British nuclear disarmament – for scrapping the Trident nuclear weapons system and preventing its replacement.’ The museum collections includes a variety of CND related items. The Objects: -A variety of badges all with an anti-nuclear theme- one of my favourites being ‘Vegetarians Against the Bomb.’(Image above) -CND related items, including posters, banners and leaflets. One such banner currently on display in the museum has a quote from Lord Home 1961 which states, ‘The British people are prepared to be blown to atomic dust if Necessary’ (Image above) - Also we have on display the story of Sadako Sasaki a girl who felt the effects of the bombs later on in her life. These are only a small amount of anti-nuclear items that are a part of our collection. Come down to museum today to see more of them! By Charlotte Hall
Charlotte joined The Peace Museum in May 2014 as a collections intern. Charlotte has been leading a location audit of the collections and has helped install and research objects in the newly developed WW1 gallery. Charlotte is studying a Masters in Museum and Art Gallery Studies at the University of Manchester.
The Peace Museum is very proud to have loaned The V&A one of its fantastic banners for its exhibition 'Disobedient Objects'. The exhibition, which was launched on 26th of July, runs until the 1st of February 2015. "From a Suffragette tea service to protest robots, this exhibition will be the first to examine the powerful role of objects in movements for social change. It will demonstrate how political activism drives a wealth of design ingenuity and collective creativity that defy standard definitions of art and design. Disobedient Objects will focus on the period from the late 1970s to now, a time that has brought new technologies and political challenges. On display will be arts of rebellion from around the world that illuminate the role of making in grassroots movements for social change: finely woven banners; defaced currency; changing designs for barricades and blockades; political video games; an inflatable general assembly to facilitate consensus decision-making; experimental activist-bicycles; and textiles bearing witness to political murders." http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/exhibitions/disobedient-objects/disobedient-objects-about-the-exhibition/ The banner on loan to The V&A is a 'Greenham Common Women's Peace Group' banner made by Thalia Campbell. This banner is very apt for this exhibition as Martin Roth, Director of the V&A explains: "This exhibition celebrates the creative 'disobedience' of designers and makers who question the rules. It shows that even with the most limited of resources, ordinary people can take design into their own hands. This is a brae and unusual exhibitions; these are brave and unusual designers. We are proud to present their work".The exhibition is FREE and takes places in the Porter Gallery of The V&A. The V&A is open daily from 10.00 until 17.45 (22.00 on Fridays). The exhibition will tour after the exhibition at The V&A. Watch this space for details of temporary venues. The exhibition is supported by Cockayne – Grants for the Arts, a donor-advised fund of The London Community Foundation. Visit http://www.vam.ac.uk/content/exhibitions/disobedient-objects/ for more information about the exhibition. Thanks to The V&A's exhibition, curatorial and press teams for support.
Object of the fortnight 30/07/2014- From War to Peace: Or a story of some very stupid people who came to their senses
FROM WAR TO PEACE: OR A STORY OF SOME VERY STUPID PEOPLE WHO CAME TO THEIR SENSESThe object of the fortnight is a booklet with the amusing title ‘From war to peace: or a story of some very stupid people who came to their senses.’ To coincide with Yorkshire day, on the first of August, we have chosen a booklet which incorporates Yorkshire but not as you would think! It is associated with the Peace Pledge Union who are the possible publishers. The booklet is currently on display in the WW1 gallery at the museum. The Peace Pledge Union The Peace Pledge Union is the oldest secular pacifist organisation in Britain. Since 1934 it has been campaigning for a warless world. They are still active today and have projects such as the White Poppy campaign. What’s the story about? The booklet is essentially about the escalation of war between the English counties, especially between Yorkshire and Lancashire. But they are not referring to the War of the Roses here, they are talking about the First World War and using England as a metaphor for the world. Who’s who? Yorkshire- Germany Lancashire- France London- England Sussex- Austria- Hungry Wales- the United States Northumberland- Russia Norfolk- Japan Kent- Italy The County Council- The League of Nations The Story It mentions all the key events that led up to the First World War and what happened throughout. An extract from the booklet states, ‘In the last year of the war Wales suddenly came in on the part of Lancashire, and the Welsh used to annoy all the other counties of England for years afterward by saying, “ Indeed, and it was all down to us who the war.” ’ It then talks about the failures of the County Council leading up to the Second World War. However this is where it diverges from history because in this story the Second World War never happened. Instead London showed the rest of the counties how to become peaceful by asking its people what they wanted and asked them to send in the postcard (picture above.) It was agreed by undertaking full disarmament others would in turn follow suit and the arms race that had plagued the Counties of England and led them to war in 1914 would be averted. It ends with, ‘Yorkshire and Lancashire were the last to disarm, but they did in the end, and England was at peace. And in those days England was the whole world’ By Charlotte Hall. Charlotte joined The Peace Museum in May 2014 as a collection intern. Charlotte has been leading a location audit of the collections and has helped install and research objects in the newly developed WW1 gallery. Charlotte is studying a Masters in Museum and Art Gallery Studies at the University of Manchester.
WOMEN'S INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE FOR PEACE AND FREEDOM PRINT BLOCK AND IMAGEThe women in the picture above are: Antia Augspurg, Charlotte Despard, Rosa Genoni, Alice Hamilton, Lida Gustava Haymann and Leapolding Kulka. The object of the fortnight is an image taken from a print block of some of the delegates from the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF) at their 1919 conference in Zurich. This image is taken from a printing block both are currently on display in the WWI gallery at the Museum. History of the WILPF The WILPF was established in 1915, it was first known as the ‘International Committee of Women for Permanent Peace’. 1,200 women from various countries and cultures gathered together for their first Conference during the First World War. This was held at The Hague and they discussed the causes of war. The second conference was then held in Zurich in May 1919. Here it was decided that the league should be permanent and the name was changed to what it is known as now ‘WILPF.’ The outcomes of the conference were that it reaffirmed the WILPF international links and that they denounced the final terms of the peace treaty ending First World War. They saw it as a scheme of revenge and (prophetically) felt this treatment would only lead to another war. The conference itself had some issues. It had to be held in Switzerland because the French government refused to allow the German women entry. Some delegates also felt that the German women should give an apology for the part their nation played in starting the war. The Women in the League Anita Augspurg – a German woman who received a doctorate in law from Zurich University. She was a well-established member of the women’s movement. Lida Gustava Heymann – also German. She taught at a charity school. She was active in the Germans women’s movement and met Augspurg in Berlin at an international congress for women. The two worked and lived together for the rest of their lives. Charlotte Despard – a British woman who was a suffragette and novelist. She formed another organisation, ‘The Women’s Peace Crusade’ which opposed all wars. Rosa Genoni – an Italian fashion designer, social journalist and lecturer who opposed the war. Alice Hamilton – an American women. She was a pioneer in industrial medicine. Lepoldina Kolka – from Austria- Hungary. She advocated transnational female solidarity against national chauvinism. The League today There are now WILPF groups in 32 countries and this expands every day. The women are now involved campaign against militarism, racism, economic injustice and human rights violations. They are very well respected, and are consulted by several United Nations agencies. By Charlotte Hall. Charlotte joined The Peace Museum in May 2014 as a collections intern. Charlotte has been leading a location audit of the collections and helped install and research objects in the newly developed WWI gallery. Charlotte is studying a Masters in Museum and Art Gallery studies at the University of Manchester.
HARRY ROBERTS' BADGE Saturday 28 June is Armed Forces Day. The Peace Museum will be open for visitors and has a stall at City park as part of Bradford Council's commemorative event. Find our stall to find out about the three types of poppies, Bradford COs and soldiers in WWI. Visit the Museum to explore our new WWI Choices gallery.Our object of the fortnight this week is the badge of the Bradford Pals, a group within the West Yorkshire Regiment in the First World War. The badge is from the uniform of Harry Roberts, a decorated solider from the war who afterwards refused to discuss his experience at war. The ‘logo’ of the West Yorkshire Regiment was a horse. Many horses from Bradford were sent to France and other areas to be used in the cavalry or to aid in other ways, such as carrying supplies. The Bradford Pals produced a journal, ‘The Tyke’, whilst they were at war, and it contains the story of a horse known as 'Spare Parts' used by the soldiers in the regiment. This badge is on display in the new WWI Choices gallery with more of Harry's personal effects, documenting his time in the Pals, his bravery and awards. ‘Spare Parts, never was a name so well deserved’. The story of Spare Parts echoes the story of Joey, the fictional horse that is the main star of Michael Morpurgo’s War Horse. This month, the Museum has been running poppy workshops prior to some performances of War Horse at the Alhambra Theatre in Bradford. The workshops have focused around the Purple Poppy which remembers animals who have died or been injured in conflict, along with the traditional Red Poppy of remembrance and the White Poppy which calls to end all wars. Spare parts could be described as a horse that shouldn’t be loved, hence his name. In ‘The Tyke’ he is lovingly described as a bit of an ugly horse, with a lazy docile persona, rarely opening his one eye. Tales of troop experiences regularly featured in the Tyke, one tells of how an inexperienced rider was put off for life after a ride with Spare Parts, who in the end, felt so sorry for the horse, he dismounted and walked the rest of the way, thinking his weight was to blame for his poor health. The story of Spare Parts ends sadly. He was eventually reclaimed by his old fighting regiment in the Cavalry, meaning he would have to go back into battle. He received the news like a ‘Derby Winner’, proudly waving his tail and opening his one glorious eye. There was not a dry eye in the Bradford Pals Battalion; all knew his fate. The story ends with ‘Hush: ‘Spare Parts’ is asleep’. He may have been an odd looking horse, if he could even pass as a horse, but he was loved by many. This shows how the big part these horses played in the lives of the soldiers at war; Spare Parts gave them entertainment and companionship. The tale of Spare Parts was very similar to other horses that were sent off to war. Just like the soldiers who bravely gave their lives for their country in the War, this why today the Purple Poppy exists to remember the sacrifice of these many animals. It wasn’t just horses that were used in the War to help the armed forces, but also dogs and carrier pigeons, with many of these being killed or harmed. Even today animals serve alongside the armed forces. Highly trained sniffer dogs are used to find bombs and landmines, such as in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. These are crucial; they often save the lives of the soldiers in their regiment by finding the bomb before it detonates. Do animals have a choice as to whether they want to serve or not? Is it just as important to remember the service animals as well as the people? By Shannen Lang. Shannen is the Education and Collections Intern at the Peace Museum and a student at the University of Leeds. Shannen has lead the Museum's Stories in Stone project which has uncovered the untold stories of COs buried at Undercliffe cemetery, as part of the Choices project. Visit http://choicesthenandnow.co.uk/untold-stories/stories-in-stone/ for more details about the project.
The Peace Museum will be observing Armed Forces Day and the WWI centenary on Saturday 28 June. From 11am, The Peace Museum will have stall in City Park as part of Bradford Council's commemorative event. Come find us and learn all about red, white and purple poppies; Bradford Pals; Bradford's very own war horse 'Spare Parts'; The Peace Museum's 'Choices' and 'Stories in Stone' projects. Families can even make their own poppies. Which colour poppy will you make? The Museum will be open from 11am - 5pm. Visitors can explore the new WWI Choices gallery. Discover the stories of those who chose to fight, those who chose to object (Conscientious Objectors) and their legacies, told through museum artefacts. Featured in this gallery are the 'Prisoner of Conscience' sculptures; personal items of Harry Roberts, a Bradford Pal; The Conchie painting and much more.Free entry. Light refreshments will be available at the Museum - donations most welcome. If you have missed any of the other special Saturday openings The Peace Museum has hosted over the last few months, now is your chance to visit us!
The temporary exhibition area has been refurbished. This area now consists of three mini-displays. The popular Sierra Leone: Building Peace after War display remains. Selected artwork by peace activist and artist Margaret Glover that relates to the theme of anti-nuclear also stays on display. The latest addition are personal effects belonging to the late Professor Joseph Rotblat. Professor Joseph Rotblat was a nuclear scientist who became an anti-nuclear activist. His anti-nuclear work and efforts resulted in him being jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1995 with the Pugwash Conferences (an annual anti-nuclear conference Rotblat set up). Objects on display include his Nobel Peace Prize ephemera, scientific instruments and graduation gowns. In keeping this the anti-nuclear theme, prints by Gerald Holtom are displayed. These show early depictions of the Direct Action Committee (later known as the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) symbol. This was adopted as the universal symbol of peace. Also displayed is a roof tile from a Japanese house destroyed by the nuclear bomb. This is a fragment of roof tile from a house that stood in the Japanese City of Nagasaki. The city was destroyed by a nuclear bomb nicknamed ‘Fat Man’ on the 9th August 1945. The bomb was a result of the work of the Manhattan Project Team that Joseph Rotblat boycotted, once he believed that evidence suggested such weapons were no longer needed to stop Hitler and the Nazis. Fragments of buildings survived in Nagasaki near the centre of the blast. Fragments of people did not. This tile was donated to The Peace Museum by Councillor North from Leeds ( himself a life-long opponent of nuclear weapons) and is a stark reminder of the damage that can be done by nuclear weapons. The Museum can be visited on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays between 10am - 4pm to see these displays and the other galleries. Visits outside of these times for groups can be made with prior arrangement. Please contact the Museum.
PEACE CONFERENCE, UNIVERSITY OF BRADFORD This year celebrates the 40th anniversary of the founding of the Peace Studies department at the University of Bradford. Last week, the University hosted its annual international peace conference and discussed the future directions and challenges for Peace Studies. This was alongside a Peace Jam event aimed at motivating young people to become active citizens and advocates for peace, justice and human rights. The Peace Museum had a marketing stall at the conference and welcomed Museum visitors from the conference as far afield as America, Australia, Japan and the Netherlands. The Peace Museum has its origins within University of Bradford's Peace Studies department. An International Network of Museums for Peace conference was held at the university in 1992, where it was proposed that a Peace Museum should be established in Bradford. It was the first museum of its kind in Britain. The object of the fortnight are two sketches of Nigel Young and Gerald Drewett by Margaret Glover. Nigel Young was a founding member of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND) in 1958 and throughout the 1960s and early 1970s he became involved in anti-war activism. He has earned several degrees at universities in Britain and America and held numerous academic positions in sociology and politics. In 1973 he co-founded Britain’s first university Peace Studies department at the University of Bradford. Gerald Drewett helped create the Peace Museum. He established the Give Peace a Chance Trust in 1986 as a charity to promote education for peace history and activism. The Trust was part of the pivotal conference which at Bradford University in 1992 where the Peace Museum was proposed. Enough support and funds meant the Museum could be opened in 1994. It celebrates twenty years this year!Margaret Glover is a contemporary artist and peace activist. She attended the 1992 conference in which the first formal discussion took place on the subject of a UK-based Peace Museum. Her drawings, such as these, provides us with much inspiration, with Nigel Young and Gerald Drewett using their passions for peace to help educate others on peace history and research. An exhibition showcasing some of her artwork is on display at the Peace Museum until the end of May. By James McDonald. I am a student at the University of Bradford currently in my second year studying politics. I am especially interested in peace activism and history, having been delighted to volunteer for the Peace Museum and a previous volunteer for the Peace Pledge Union in London.