Time Vault: the Morpeth Olympics Re-imagined
Believe it or not Morpeth had its own Olympic games long before the revival of the modern Olympics. The event continued to be held from the 1870s right up to the 1950s but was then confined to the vaults of history. Until now!
The doors to Time Vault: the Morpeth Olympics Re-imagined will open on Saturday 30th June to reveal the results of months of research by a group of local young people who also took part in art and music workshops inspired by this famous local sporting event.
Young people from Morpeth, Stannington and Ashington visited the Northumberland Archives at Woodhorn as part of the project to explore information held in the archives relating to the Morpeth Games. Their findings were then developed into illustrations during a series of workshops with young local designer Daniel Weatheritt. Many of Daniel’s own illustrations will also be showcased in the exhibition alongside an interactive exhibition guide and the archive documents that inspired them.
Old film of the Morpeth Olympic Games was also a great source of inspiration. Thanks to his son Clive Temple, footage of the Games from the 1930s and 1960s captured by amateur film-maker Tom Temple will be shown during the exhibition. Encouraged by this remarkable film, the young people from BlueJam and Alnwick Creative Music Club have created an Olympic anthem, a special piece of music called “Let My Feet Have Wings” which will also feature in the exhibition.
Juliet Hardy, Woodhorn's creative mentor and project coordinator for the Time Travel Northumberland project has been working with the young people on the exhibition.
“This particular project and the resulting exhibition is central to the whole Time Travel Northumberland young people’s project. A partnership activity delivered by Woodhorn Museum with support from the Northumberland Youth Service, it is funded by NE-Generation the Legacy Trust UK regional programme, to create a lasting impact from the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games by funding ideas and local talent to inspire creativity across the UK. The exhibition is also part of the Wonders of the North Festival.
The young people who have been involved in the preparation and development of Time Vault, have found it an extremely worthwhile project,” according to Juliet. “It has given them the chance to take the lead and plan an exhibition from scratch which is a really empowering, valuable experience for them. They have worked with highly skilled professionals to create for visitors of all ages to Woodhorn an exhibition that reinterprets an iconic historical event. I feel it shows how young people can take something from the past and inject creative ideas to interpret their heritage it in ways that are relevant and engaging to them.”
Time Vault: the Morpeth Olympics Re-imagined will run until 4 November.