The Wayland Partnership Heritage Group is made up of members from the village history groups and other interested individuals. The aim is to support these groups in their local research, provide a network of information sharing, and enable Wayland-wide projects. We are very aware that the wide interest in local and family history is an important element of sustainable tourism. Our projects enable us to help keep the visitor better informed and improve their experience of Wayland. Our network enables us to help those researching family history across the area – we usually know who to ask!
The Heritage Group began soon after the formation of the Partnership. The first project was to research the stories behind the wealth of mediaeval churches in our area. It was funded by European, Lottery and other funding. In 2004 we launched the book of our findings on 18 local churches entitled ‘Unlocking Our Stories; the Churches of Wayland’. The book is still available at Wayland House. We also conducted a large number of church tours and continue to receive requests for these. The project won local and regional awards and was runner up for a national award.
Having been left with unused material and a raft of unanswered questions, we sought Heritage Lottery funding to research the wider histories of the villages of Wayland. We were successful in obtaining a bid for £124,000. We researched, wrote, printed and bound the resulting books in-house, one for each village in Wayland, entitled ‘Capturing Our Wayland Heritage’ plus the village name. Additional material was included in each book on DVD. These are still popular and are available at Wayland House.
Having touched briefly on the stories of the men from each village as part of the previous histories, the group was keen to understand the wider impact this conflict had on Wayland and we were granted £10,000 from HLF towards the project. The book entitled ‘The Impact of World War One On Wayland’ was launched in 2016. We also created trails leaflets highlighting the memorials across Wayland.
We are now in the process of designing a bid to Heritage Lottery Fund which will enable us to pull together the strands of information held in each village in order to learn about the impact of WWII on Wayland. As with the WWI project we plan to extend the research from a village focus to creating a picture of life at that time across Wayland. We also hope to learn more about how the area had changed since WWI and how it continued to change as it experienced the effects of a new type of warfare.
If you would like to join us please get in touch. We will be seeking memories to record, or artefacts, photos and documents about WWII in Wayland which you may be able to lend to us or allow us to view or copy. You can be involved in a small way by attending events, talks and exhibitions, or you may wish to be more involved , for example in some of the research, collating information, proof reading and helping to set up exhibitions. No matter how small or great, your contribution will be of value.
Contact Bronwen Tyler at Wayland House or email firstname.lastname@example.org or talk to a member of your village group.