Here are some of the comments from participants at the conference. There are more in the film on the main conference page.
Knowledge and Understanding
People learnt about new aspects of the history of the First World War:
- I have learnt a great deal about the range of the campaigns away from the Western Front – and the awful loss of life as a result of illness rather than conflict.
- Hejaz Railway talk a revelation.
- [I learnt about] the Italian connection outlined by ‘The Turin Men’.
People learnt about new ways to present history to wider audiences:
- I believe that all the research and events that have taken place as part of the centenary period – such as ‘Away from the Western Front’ and its associated projects – have helped ensure that today’s children are better informed about this subject than many earlier generations. The Heritage Lottery Fund has been crucial in bringing this and so many other ‘heritage’ based initiatives to life.
- I learned too many facts to list but what has struck me is the ways in which the past can be made relevant, accessible and important today. Thank you J.
- The value to young people involved is my most positive impression.
- It was great to see how all the individual projects have been linked together and how they have a permanent record via the website.
People learnt about how to manage a heritage event:
- A particularly well-organised and structured event with a practical exposition of cross-organisational co-operation.
- Particularly successful: the use of ‘short’ speeches made it move along very well and gave just a wide variety of topics; the excellent use Lottery money has been put to involving many communities and age groups. A brilliant and informative day. Many thanks.
Attitudes and Values
People’s views about participation and engagement were changed as a result of attending the event:
- These splendid volunteers through the projects are passing on to the younger generation about what took place.
- People of all ages are participating – it drags you in!
Enjoyment, Inspiration and Creativity
People enjoyed the event and were inspired to learn more and develop future projects of their own:
- Meeting experts and enthusiasts in the field of WW1 away from the Western Front, I have been inspired to learn more.
- Very impressed by the dedication and amazing research on the variety of topics covered today.
- Fantastic event – such a mixture of creative projects.
- [I learnt] how a small amount of money can go a long way in helping people engage and learn when there is such good co-ordination.
- The creative writing was excellent.
- Excellent and informative talks about community projects. Truly inspiring.
- [I have learnt] so much. [There’s] so much I want to look more into now I’ve had this taster, particularly in terms of ethnic mix and the psychological inheritance of the descendants.
- I have lots of ideas, if I can prise more money out of my Trustees!