Thinking about researching your family tree? How about looking into the history of your home or community? Perhaps you have just started a course and need help with a project. Whatever it might be why not start exploring your archive today,

The Explore Your Archive campaign is encouraging you to discover the stories, the facts, the places and the people that are at the heart of your communities. Archives across the UK and Ireland are taking part to emphasise the value of archives to society and highlight the rich variety of content that is held, preserved and made available to users.

To celebrate the campaign; special events and story boxes to showcase the collections have been organised in archives across North Wales.

Flintshire Record Office held an event where you could learn the ancient craft of book binding and make your own beautiful hand-bound notebook.
Denbighshire Archives held a free ‘Family History for beginners’ event at St Asaph Library on Monday 2nd December.

Story boxes based on the 17th century book of heraldry have been produced and placed in libraries around the county.

Denbighshire Archivist Sarah Winning said, “The boxes are filled with interesting facts about heraldry, templates to create your own coat of arms and extracts taken from the painted book itself. The boxes are available to view in Corwen, Llangollen, Denbigh, Rhuddlan, Rhyl, Ruthin, St Asaph libraries and in Prestatyn when they open in their new location on the 25th November.”

He’s behind you! Take a visit to Wrexham archives where you will find a story box all about Wrexham’s historic pantomimes. Joy Thomas, Local Studies Librarian who has helped to create the story box says ‘’For me this little collection of photographs, posters and programmes tells a fascinating story of theatrical entertainment in Wrexham in the 20th Century.’’

The Wrexham and District Pantomime Company visited the archives to view the story box.
This February the Company will be staging ‘Babes in the Wood with Robin Hood’ at the William Aston Hall, between Feb 22 – 28th. Alternatively, roll up for an interactive performance for all the family on Saturday 4th January at Wrexham Archives. Search for riddles and jokes to discover why Wrexham should never forget Walter Roberts.

John Chambers, Chief Executive, The Archives and Records Association (UK & Ireland) commented:

“Explore Your Archive is going to be a real game-changer for the sector. As archives in all parts of the UK and Ireland come together as never before to communicate with the public, we have a real opportunity to inspire people who haven’t yet walked into or clicked onto our world.”

Librarian of the National Library of Wales, Aled Gruffydd Jones is supporting the campaign to inspire people to explore archives, added:

“Visiting an archive can take you on an adventure – you may end up discovering much more than you imagined. Archives are full of fascinating content to read, touch and explore. Take time to explore archives – whether you’re interested in fashion, sport, food or UFOs, there will be something to inspire you in archives.”

To start your own adventure please visit your local archive service, go to archiveswales.org or find Archives Wales on Facebook and Twitter. For more information on the events that are happening in Archives across Wales please visit http://www.archiveswales.org

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