Aldgate Community Project Gets Heritage Funding Boost

A new community initiative which celebrates Aldgate’s rich history and diverse communities has received a grant of £33,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

‘Much To Do About Aldgate’ is an umbrella scheme including four projects run by Claque Theatre in partnership with the City of London Corporation’s London Metropolitan Archives (LMA).

It encompasses a series of events that will bring the area’s history to life, revealing a tale of migration and inclusivity, innovation and industry, culminating with a community performance featuring residents and community groups from the local area.

The London Metropolitan Archives will be working with Claque Theatre to provide research workshops with local residents to help them discover historical photographs and documents. The findings will be featured in suitcase displays and will also be featured in the final community performance.

Jan Pimblett, City of London Corporation Principal Development Officer at the LMA, said: “We are proud to be associated with this exciting project which will highlight Aldgate’s changing character through the years. It will introduce people to the wonders of the London Metropolitan Archives and we look forward to working with the local community to discover and explore our local history.”

Jon Oram, Artistic Director, Claque Theatre, said: “The Heritage Lottery grant gives the community of the east of the City a real opportunity to discover more about their vibrant past and the exhibitions will acknowledge their part in a continuing heritage.”

The events associated with the funding are:

Travelling Tales (January - October 2017): Suitcase displays created by local residents, workers and organisations will depict their journeys and connections to the City. Exhibited in shop and cafe windows, office and hotel lobbies, gyms, churches and more, the displays will be accompanied with recordings of locals sharing their memories and experiences of living in the City, which will go into the London Metropolitan Archive.

Telling Tales (April - October 2017): Old photographs displayed in locations where they were originally taken will enable people to contrast how each area has changed. Locals in costume representing historic characters will relay stories and offer guided tours.

The Aldgate Tales (June 2017 - 2 week run): An immersive spectacle of drama, sound and food, evoking happenings and locations evocative to EC3 and its environs – bringing together residents, workers, organisations and businesses. The funding will contribute to the development of The Aldgate Chronicles – the script which will form the basis of the performance.

The City of London Corporation invests £80m every year in heritage and cultural activities of all kinds. It is the country’s biggest funder of culture after the Government, the BBC and the Heritage Lottery Fund.