Grant for museum to continue war project

The Half-Shilling Curate - Rev Herbert Cowl.
The Half-Shilling Curate - Rev Herbert Cowl.

Belford’s museum has been awarded a Heritage Lottery grant of £6,900 to continue its First World War project – Belford, A Rural Area at War.

The ethos of the project is to engage with people, some of whom may think they have no interest at all, and inform and interest them in the history of this conflict through a series of talks, films and events.

A play is to be staged by the Belford Players on Armistice Day 2018 about the joys of victory and the events that preceded it, while Lucy Adlington, from the History Wardrobe of York, is coming to Belford in 2018 to put on a performance of V for Victory, an uplifting presentation about life on the home front.

The details of all the men and women involved in the conflict are being researched and the results digitized and displayed within the museum on the interactive display.

Although this is the story of Belford and surrounding area, it is a story that was replicated in every community in the country. All the research that has gone into the Great War exhibitions from the start of the war to the end is to be made into a book.

The programme of events continues on Sunday with a talk by the Northumberland author Sarah Reay on her book, The Half-Shilling Curate, which tells the story of her grandfather, the Reverend Herbert Butler Cowl, an Army chaplain.

He was badly wounded by shrapnel during heavy bombardment in Flanders and on the way home, the hospital ship he was on sank with the loss of 134 lives. Herbert risked his own life to save others despite his own injuries and was awarded the Military Cross. The talk takes place at 2.30pm in Bell View.