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New project searches for Rugby's untold stories

RUGBY Art Gallery and Museum launches a new project this month to research and share Rugby's untold stories.

Your Story, Your Collection has secured £50,000 from Arts Council England to delve deeper into the borough's social history and better represent its diverse communities.

The Art Gallery and Museum plans to work closely with the Benn Partnership Centre and Rugby Black Lives Matter to deliver the project, with a programme of events planned to expand the Museum's social history collection and engage with new audiences.

Catherine Shanahan, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum's senior collections officer, said recent history had inspired Your Story, Your Collection.

"Social history unfolds every day and we have lived through a number of milestones in recent years, from the #MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements campaigning for social change to Covid-19, a once-in-a-century pandemic," Catherine said.

"We want to reach out to under-represented communities in our social history collection to capture a true picture of Rugby in 2021, giving unheard stories a voice and forging new creative partnerships across the borough."

Your Story, Your Collection launches later this month and includes pop-up displays at the Benn Partnership Centre and other venues in the borough, an artist in residence programme, workshops to collect oral histories and new objects for the social history collection, and a host of arts activities, heritage workshops and social events.

Running until June 2023, the project also aims to nurture talent in the town by offering Volunteering and Community Action Research placements to boost employment prospects.

Cllr Howard Roberts, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for leisure and wellbeing, said: "Your Story, Your Collection promises to build on Rugby Art Gallery and Museum's position as the borough's cultural hub by strengthening existing links and building new partnerships in our communities.

"The funding from Arts Council England has allowed the Art Gallery and Museum to embark on this journey of discovery, and we're all looking forward to seeing and hearing the results."

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