Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archive by the National Portrait Gallery to support the delivery of a project called Citizen UK. They have received a £17million HLF grant for capital projects and part of this they need to develop their collections which lack diversity. They have several local history partners across the country, and we are the East London arm. The idea is to run sessions to get local communities to identify gaps in the collections, and put forward locally significant historical figures.
THLHLA are keen to use it as an opportunity to deliver a programme on Bangladeshi Independence 50 Years. This programme will focus on the experiences of Tower Hamlets-based Bangladeshi diaspora and their experiences of the 1971 conflict. Participants will use THLHLA, NPG and other heritage collections to explore experiences of local residents in 1970-71: firstly as war threatened, then broke out and then as it came to an end… How did the people of Tower Hamlets react? What protests, fundraising etc took place and how did the people involved feel at the time? We are keen to go through different aspects of the Bengali struggle as a negotiation for citizenship.
Swadhinata Trust members part of the steering group.
Delivery timetable: (to be worked out with partners)
July/Aug Steering Committee/Prepare Artist Tender
Sept Call out for Citizen Researchers
Oct/Nov Artist appointed/Collections Workshops begin
Dec Commission Artwork/Exhibition
Feb/Mar Events Delivery