Their Finest Hour Digital Collections Day was a great success!

On Saturday, 16th September, Lancing Prep at Worthing held a special History Day. This was a Digital Collection Day with the aim of preserving the everyday stories and objects of the Second World War. Other schools might like to run their own events! This is because there is a nationwide campaign organised by Their Finest Hour, a team based at the University of Oxford and funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

We asked the local community to come and share their own stories and objects, whether they were from parents, grandparents, or other family members.

The day was a huge success, with 36 stories and countless objects being recorded and over 100 people in attendance across the day.

The day started off with BBC Radio Sussex interviewing our very own Ms Melody Bridges (Head of Humanities & Able, Gifted & Talented Events Co-Ordinator). The interview went live on air just after 9am, encouraging the local community to get involved. The Deputy Mayor of Worthing, Ibsha Choudhury, then opened the event and said a few words.

On the day, we had a fantastic history display board created by Ms Bridges and her pupils. Lancing Brass of the Royal British Legion came along to play second-world war-themed music, which was a big hit with everyone. The Worthing Society also had a lovely stand in the school hall, speaking with people about the history and architectural amenities of Worthing and the surrounding area. Our school chef, Mr Ronald Bell, also put on a fantastic display of ration-type food, including rationing cake, Lemmon Drizzle, and Victoria sponge, along with the classic fruit scones!

We met some wonderful people on the day and heard some touching stories. One that particularly affected us was that of a lady called Margaret, who brought along a photo that was taken in 1942 with her sister Eileen. They were wearing dresses that their mother made from the parachute that saved an airman’s life.

Lancing Prep Worthing staff and pupils were on hand throughout the day, helping to run the event and record everyone’s stories. These stories, along with photos of accompanying artefacts, will be uploaded to the Their Finest Hour Digital Library, this is a national archive helping to preserve stories before they are lost forever.

If you would like to run your own event then get in touch with Their Finest Hour at the University of Oxford. You can also get in touch with Lancing Prep at Worthing for advice about how to run your own event.