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The Weaving the Web project – Sunny Bank Mills Archive funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund

By July 26, 2023No Comments
A photograph of a pile of tote bags, badges, stickers and a mug which all have the phrase 'weaving the web' written on them.

Sunny Bank Mills was a fine worsted suiting textile mill, situated in Farsley, on the outskirts of Leeds and has been on the same site since 1829.  The Archive at Sunny Bank Mills and its historic buildings are all that remain of this world-renowned quality cloth and the unique skills of the workers who worked there.

The pandemic had highlighted that the organisation needed to adapt. They needed more digital resources and digital resilience by providing better accessibility and inclusivity.

Combining their need to be relevant in a digital age with a need to understand a sometimes-unheard voice of this community group, they partnered with their local Specialist Inclusive Learning Centre (West SILC) in Leeds, with whom they carried out several workshops with expert input from;

  • ​Web designers; also looked at accessibility of the SBM website​.
  • Photographers (Tom Jackson, University of Leeds). ​
  • Graphic Designers: included a brief to design the project logo.​

These initial workshops gave the SILC students an insight into what these careers involve and helped the organisation to gain a grasp of their understanding.  In addition, community workshops were run looking at the technologies on offer and the pros and cons of objects in a virtual world.

The legacy is the 360 online collection. which creates a unique exploration of the collection that should inspire and create lasting connections to heritage.

If you would like to find out more about what they did, how and why, read their blog on the Sunny Bank Mills website.

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