The Salisbury District Hospital ArtCare team has been awarded a £40,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to archive and expand its collection of historical memorabilia and medical equipment.
The collection includes photographs, video, artwork and medical objects that give a distinctive view of Salisbury and the way healthcare has developed from 1700 to the present day. There are letters by Florence Nightingale who writes about the welfare of nurses, to scratched graffiti from GIs waiting to deal with D-Day casualties in the 1940s. There is even a musical score composed for the hospital.
Lesley Meaker, ArtCare Lead for the History Project said: “We are delighted to receive this funding and, thanks to players of the National Lottery, this grant will enable us to improve the condition of the health and medicine collection at Salisbury District Hospital. It will also enable local people to see more of it over the next two years through touring exhibitions, talks and hands-on activities, which will culminate in an online website and permanent history display in the hospital.”
Mrs Meaker added: “We also want to expand and develop the collection further and need people to get involved, either as volunteers who will work with us to preserve the collection or to share their stories.”
Nerys Watts, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund South West, said: “Salisbury District Hospital has a fascinating collection which covers the 1700s to the present day. The HLF is delighted that our funding, with support from volunteers and the local community, will enable it to be preserved and transformed into a rich resource for people to enjoy and use.”
ArtCare is a charitable not-for-profit arts organisation that is funded by charitable donations, exhibition sales and fundraising grants. It has been delivering creative art and activities for patients and visitors at Salisbury District Hospital for over 20 years and contributed to the design of key services and facilities, such as the Children’s Unit, general wards, hospital departments and corridors. It has responsibility for archiving and maintaining the historic collection and uses every opportunity to exhibit its collection within the hospital and in the community.
Mrs Meaker said: “In 2014 we celebrated 21 years at Salisbury District Hospital and a large part of the collection was exhibited throughout the year. We had such a fantastic response from our staff and local people which highlighted the value of this project and the way in which so many people will benefit from this additional support.
ArtCare will be training volunteers to record and preserve the collection for future use. They are also looking for people who can help develop the collection through their own personal stories or if they are happy to donate appropriate memorabilia to the hospital collection. Please contact Lesley on 01722 336262, extension 4884 or email her direct at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Notes to editors
About the Heritage Lottery Fund
National Lottery players' money is used to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the country’s heritage. It includes archaeology, historic parks and buildings, precious memories and collections and rare wildlife. For more information about the Heritage Lottery Fund visit: www.hlf.org.uk.