- An award by the Heritage Lottery Fund caught our attention this week especially as we have just started our one-place study of Kinclaven. The successful bid, led by a committee, aims to trace all of the people who ever lived in Newbiggin by the Sea in Northumberland. Hilton Dawson was quoted by the New Post Leader - “This is a unique undertaking which already has more than 3,300 people included in our database and which offers huge potential for story-telling, publications, theatre, displays and events all about the rich history and community life of Newbiggin''.
As a genealogist and family historian what appeals to me about this project is it takes place as a defining characteristic but then elevates the status of people by choosing to record each individual inhabitant's details in history to discover the story of the people and the place over time.
City, town, village or hamlet what are they without the community that builds and inhabits each over the centuries? In terms of day to day research we often find ourselves exploring many new places looking for people,we are virtual tourists and time travellers. Knowing the place where you last saw the ancestor you seek is crucial in being able to find out what records they may have left behind - and where those records are held today. I am looking forward to my next visit to Newbiggin and hope that in some small way Old Scottish can contribute a little information in a local or dear place, such as Kinclaven that provides a signpost for another genealogist or family historian on their ancestral journey.
The Newbiggin by the Sea project is looking for volunteers and a meeting is to be held on 21st September.
For more details see the New Post Leader article