|Filming is completed, the edit suites have been a hive of activity, and the seven episodes of the Chalke Valley History Show are now in the can and will be available to watch each day the Festival was supposed to be running.|
Every episode focusses on one of our planned speakers for this year’s Festival, filmed in person and intercut with images and film footage, as well as a new Living History feature, specially filmed contributions from a host of other historians, and previously unseen features and footage from our archives.
Each programme will premier at 19:30 from Monday 22
to Sunday 28 June and be available on our website
where they will remain thereafter.
We do hope you’ll enjoy the show and, although we’re bitterly disappointed not to be seeing you all at our beautiful site, we hope the Chalke Valley History Shows will give you a flavour of what we’re missing and make you yearn even more for a return to the Festival next year.
The Chalke Valley History Show is not all we have on offer during the week that should have been the Festival. In a slight departure from their World War II podcast, comedian Al Murray and James Holland will be releasing a run of specials – ‘We Have Ways of Making You Chalke’ – covering a range of subjects and talking to historians on subjects that move away from the Second World War and include a wider scope of history.
Every day, from 22-28 June, there will be a new podcast in which Al and James talk about the festival, the importance of history and learn much from a raft of historians from Michael Wood to German writer and historian Nora Krug, and from Professor Gary Sheffield to Tim Bouverie on Chamberlain and appeasement. They will also be out on the road with a living history special. The podcasts can be found on Acast or iTunes here: https://apple.co/2YsZXQV
The Festival Team
|We hope you’re all keeping safe and well at this very peculiar time.|
We wanted to let you all know that the festival team has not entirely shut up shop for 2020. Rather, we’ve decided instead to make seven episodes of the Chalke Valley History Show – a 50-minute daily TV programme that we’ll be airing each day the festival should have been running in June.
Chalke Valley History Show
Each episode will feature a filmed interview with one of the speakers due to talk, as well as shorter pieces with living historians, glimpses of history festivals past, and various other features.
Work has already begun on this, and filming – at a safe social distance, of course – began this week. We’re filming scientist, author and broadcaster, Adam Rutherford, Sophy Roberts about her book ‘The Lost Pianos of Siberia’, and the wonderful stonemason, Andrew Ziminski, who has written a stunning and personal book about the history of architecture in this country through a number of the buildings he has worked on from the West Kennet Longbarrow to Salisbury Cathedral. We’ve got Saul David speaking about the Battle of Okinawa in 1945, Tom Holland on his book, ‘Dominion’, and Caryn Mandabach, the producer of ‘Peaky Blinders’, talking about making historical drama. We’re also doing a living history special.
Nearer the time, we will be updating you about how you can watch these, but we are excited to be producing a series of high quality, informative and entertaining shows that may make everyone feel just a little bit sadder about what they’re missing this summer!
Finally, while we are all obviously very sad that there will be no festival this year, we’re very pleased to be bringing you something this coming June.
The Festival Team
Watch this space…
Throughout the year Salisbury Museum and a number of volunteers have been busy promoting the museum and publicising the new Wessex gallery at various community events, along with the museum’s own activities programme. I have been talking to a couple of volunteers who have been helping out at various events over the summer, and with Salisbury Museum’s new Volunteer Coordinator Bridget Telfer.
“Salisbury Museum has had a stall at seven different community events across Wiltshire over the summer to help publicise the museum and the new archaeology galleries. These events have been a brilliant way to meet lots of new people and engage them in what the Museum is doing – at most of the events we have had a ‘Guess the mystery object quiz’ which has proved popular with all age ranges (featuring such objects as a Roman roof tile and Roman strigil for scraping oil off the skin) as well as a ‘make and take’ activity for children.”
“On 29th and 30th June we had a stall at the Chalke Valley History Festival where on the Sunday we displayed the Scout Car and visitors got a chance to sit in it for a small fee!” – Bridget Telfer, Volunteer Coordinator.
As part of the Chalke Valley History Festival Salisbury Museum Director Adrian Green also took part in a discussion of the findings from the ‘Digging for History’ archaeological dig that took place in the Chalke Valley two weeks before the festival. The dig took the form of a series of test pits on the site of a deserted medieval village between the villages of Alvediston and Berwick St John, and was undertaken by a group of leading archaeologists and volunteers from the Chalke Valley. At the festival Adrian and the principle archaeologists discussed the findings, revealing some of the rich history of the Chalke Valley’s past.
You may also have seen the museum’s stall in Salisbury city centre over the summer. The stall proved very successful for getting information to parents about the various family activities that the museum runs during the school holidays and throughout the year for those below school age.
“I spent most of my time accosting mums with young children saying ‘do you know about our under-five Fridays?’, ‘do you know about our children’s activities?’, and just handing out the information to them…[we] got a really good response from most of them. A lot of them didn’t necessarily know [that the museum had regular family activities].” – Mary Crane, Volunteer.
The museum has hosted a wide range of events over the summer holidays for children and families, involving arts and crafts, storytelling, role play and much more! On Wednesday 31st July the museum had two eccentric Victorian antiquarians in the museum on a quest to unravel the mysteries of Stonehenge. Volunteers Emma Mellor and Mary Crane helped out at the event and have been telling me a bit more about it and what they did:
“There were these two Victorian ladies who turned up and they were basically talking about the archaeology of Stonehenge, but one of them was pretending to be totally ignorant and coming forward with all the outmoded theories that used to be propagated about Stonehenge; the other one was trying to correct her. They did a short talk, just the two of them, almost in conversation, and the one who was wrong was talking to the audience the whole time. It was actually quite funny… At one stage we also had a group with learning disabilities in, and some of them could really see the funny side to it, which was great.”– Mary Crane, Volunteer.
“Depending on who the audience was they had different activities, like measuring with the plumb-bob; [I also helped the smaller children] with colouring; and I did a bit of object handling. [There was also] a memory game where they threw a cover over a selection of archaeologists tools, and then took one away.” – Emma Mellor.
Mary Crane has also been helping out with the museum’s monthly ‘Under 5’s Fridays’ activities, which are craft based sessions for under-fives and their parents or carers.
“They made a big treasure chest and [the children and parents] made precious objects to put in it. So they were using cut up straws to make necklaces and bracelets, and they were using aluminium foil to make little goblets…There was some rather nice tubes to make telescopes. It was just a craft morning really. But of course what comes out of it is all the chat around what they’re doing…It’s a way of getting people into the museum, and feeling at home in the museum as much as anything really.” – Mary Crane, Volunteer.
The ‘Under-5’s Fridays’ run throughout the year and offer parents, grandparents or carers looking after young children an opportunity to chat with other mums and dads and do fun activities with their little ones. To find out more about the various activities and events on offer go to the ‘What’s On’ page at the Salisbury Museum website – http://www.salisburymuseum.org.uk/whats-on.