Schools win £6k lottery grant

The children watched their film on the big screen at Cineworld, St Helens
The children watched their film on the big screen at Cineworld, St Helens

Six schools in St Helens have won a share of a £6,200 Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

Awarded through HLF’s First World War: then and now programme, the project focused on children of St Helens exploring the impact of the First WorldWar on local life in the town.

Over the last four months, over 200 Year 5 children from St Peter’s C.E, St Ann’s C.E, Rivington, Lyme, Billinge Chapel End and Longton Lane Community Primary Schools have actively researched elements of what life would have

been like at home and abroad in WWI.

They then helped to produce short dramas based on their research and this was collated to produce a DVD by St Helens born film director, Lee Muradand once completed, the children were given the star treatment by attending the premiere of their very own film.

In addition to the children learning about life during the war, they

learned a lot about humility, community values, looking after one another in times of hardship, the folly of human conflict.

They also learned about the process of filming, the use of technologies such as the green screen and also about the editing process which transforms all the elements of filming into a coherent whole – and learned the importance of being part of a team from the drama workshops.

Commenting on the award, Lee, who has worked closely with primary schools across St Helens for a number of years, said: “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. Copies of the DVD will now be distributed to schools and local community groups to share the celebration.

“The children were incredible to work with and it was great to see them take a mature approach to such a subject, all through the art of drama.

Projects like this ensure that our future generations appreciates the sacrifice made by so many for our freedom in a fun yet educational way.”

Using money raised through the National Lottery, the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) aims to make a lasting difference for heritage, people and communities across the UK and help build a resilient heritage economy. From museums, parks and historic places to archaeology, natural environment and cultural traditions, we invest in every part of our diverse heritage. HLF has supported almost 35,000 projects with more than £5.5bn across the UK.

More details from HLF’s website, www.hlf.org.uk.