FOLIO Sutton Coldfield is delighted to announce the launch of a pilot project to collaboratively build a map of memories and local history for Sutton Coldfield.

Mapping our Memories is an interactive website which, over time, will build up a rich, grassroots history of our town. It is a map of the town with clickable points of interest, where old photos, historic details about past residents of the town, newspaper articles and more can be shared. We warmly invite you to join us and build this map together; everyone – young and old – is welcome to get involved and contribute.

A screenshot of the interactive Mapping our Memories website

What memories would you like to add to the map? What stories and photos have you got to share which you’d like to see documented so your experiences, reminiscence, interests are recorded and appreciated? What do you remember from your childhood and what tales did your parents and grandparents tell you about life in Sutton Coldfield in the past?

If you’d like to get involved, please email map@foliosuttoncoldfield.org.uk. Whether you’ve just one memory or photo you’d like to share, or whether you’ve got lots to contribute we’d love to hear from you. You don’t need to be good at IT, or have a computer; we’ll listen to your stories and turn them into an entry on the map. We can also help with photos and other images (for example if things need to be digitised). We want to ensure there are no barriers to getting involved in this community project.

This is your map, so if you’ve any questions or suggestions, please do also email us so we can shape this project around what we all decide matters to us. The project terms can be found here.

This is an activity we can take part in from home whilst social distancing measures are still in place. When it once again becomes possibles we will also offer in-person social events in Sutton Library, using all the amazing resources available there, to further aid the mapping of our memories; this project has grown out of a monthly group FOLIO ran (and will run again, when libraries reopen and social distancing is no longer required) in Sutton Coldfield Library, where we showed photos from the library’s archives and anyone could comment, ask questions or share their memories about the places in the photos. The group was a collaboration with the Sutton Coldfield History group, a rich and vibrant online community dedicated to the history of Sutton. A special thank you goes to Jan Ross, moderator of that group, for her continued support and help with FOLIO’s local history activities.

We are indebted to Alan Cameron Wills, Robert Anthony and Rowan O’Neill for their generous support of this project. We have been particularly inspired by their work on Moylgrove History Map and Map Digi Penfro.

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