Yesterday was the third time I’d met the young people from Four Dwellings and Waverley Road. I’ve been working with the Archivists group and I’ve been really impressed with the ideas that they have come up with – not to mention the new approaches to collecting that they have thought of.
Their awareness of the difficulties of deciding what to keep as an archive, and what will tell people now and in the future about what is important to them has been a nice experience for me. I was particularly struck by the view expressed by some that they wanted this opportunity to record for history the positives about young people today – to address the imbalance in the representations of young people in the press etc.
They also talked about how it can be hard to get people to put things in an archive, when people want to hold on to them – because they do mean something to them – which is a problematic part of my job too. Their campaigns to get people to add things to the archive are well under way though, with appeals in assembly, posters put up around the schools asking for contributions and the latest idea is to build up a scrap book that everyone can put something in of themselves that they would like preserved forever.
Archivist at Birmingham Archives & Heritage