The Exhibition in a Box is now on the road

Exhibition in a Box

After four years of thoughtful commemoration of the First World War, we have distilled the memories into a travelling trunk which opens up to reveal a series of keepsake boxes. Each box contains authentic artefacts such as postcards, service records, a horse shoe and a whistle.

These objects can be handled and have been carefully chosen to promote a deeper understanding of the conflict. A heritage specialist is on hand at a series of community events, to provide background information such as an explanation of the Death Penny, a bronze memorial plaque sent to the families of men and women who had lost their lives between 1914-18.

Some of the objects have zapcodes attached so that the viewer can have a multi-sensory experience. By using a simple phone app, participants can watch digital stories about people from the Valleys, listen to WW1 music, read online articles and experience remembrance services.

“The theme of the boxes is the different types of silence,” said H4A project manager Bethan Lewis. “There’s silence as an act of remembrance, silence as a form of protection, silence as a consequence of trauma and silence of dissent. We hope that the boxes will stimulate discussion and spark the imagination.”

The project has been supported by The National Lottery Heritage Fund. Objects and stories have been gathered with the support of heritage partners Gwent Archives, Glamorgan Archives, the Winding House, Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery, and Amgueddfa Cymru National Museum Wales.

Workshops led by the historian have been held with community members and school children. These have produced creative work which will be exhibited at the end of the project and will be available online in a digital format to help others learn about the far-reaching aftermath of the conflict.

“This is amazing if you don’t really know or understand what they went through in the war.”
“A very thought-provoking exhibition.”
Comments from participants.