What does heritage mean to you? That’s the question historians and archaeologists from the University of Lincoln are trying to uncover through a new research project called Our Lincolnshire.
County residents are being invited to complete an online questionnaire as part of the project designed to examine public attitudes towards heritage across the county and find out what is seen as important when preserving and enhancing heritage sites and traditions.
Prof Carenza Lewis, best known for presenting the Time Team television series, joined the University of Lincoln in 2015 and is based in Lincoln’s School of History and Heritage.
She is leading the project alongside Professor Matthew Cragoe, Pro Vice Chancellor and head of the university’s College of Arts.
“When I was on Time Team, my work as an archaeologist and historian explored the past with people across the UK and beyond.
“Since becoming professor at the University of Lincoln, I am lucky enough to live and work in Lincolnshire and I now hope to find out how heritage matters to people in this county,” said Prof Lewis.
“We are interested in this because while research has shown that heritage benefits people in many different ways, we know that the heritage sites, collections and traditions of Lincolnshire’s rural areas do not attract as much attention as the many iconic historic attractions of the city of Lincoln.
“This means that people may be missing out on the benefits which heritage can bring.
“We hope Our Lincolnshire will get people in Lincolnshire connecting with heritage in a range of creative and meaningful ways. It’s our chance to change the future of the past,” she added.
The survey, which launched last month, is available to complete until the end of March, and is designed to give people a chance to have their say about what aspects of Lincolnshire’s heritage are valuable and significant to them.
Its findings will shape how heritage is presented and looked after today and in the future and ensure it continues to play a part in enhancing lives across the county.
A web app called My Lincolnshire Collection will also be launched so people can choose their top ten Lincolnshire heritage objects from a selection of 100 images online.
Another component of the project, funded by Arts Council England, will involve local theatre companies liaising with community groups in Spalding, Louth, Gainsborough and Grantham to create new live performances that will be made available online.
Our Lincolnshire will also explore sport as a type of heritage activity, examining how local organisations such as local cricket clubs have long been woven into the lives of their communities.
• To find out more and complete the survey visit www.ourlincolnshire.blogs.lincoln.as.uk