London SE1 website team

Lottery boost for Fire Brigade Museum

The London Fire Brigade Museum in Southwark Bridge Road will be mounting an exhibition to celebrate the part played by those on the home front with a £10,000 grant from the Big Lottery Fund.

London Fire  Brigade Museum
Britain's oldest firefighter, 99-year-old Cyril Demarne, at the London Fire Brigade Museum to launch the Home Front Recall programme.

The award was made on Wednesday as part of the scheme's 7.3 million joint funding initiative from Lottery good cause distributors the Big Lottery Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund, which provides grants to fund activities across the UK to commemorate the part played by those on the home front during the war years – among them veteran firefighters, auxiliary services, nurses, Bevin Boys, dock workers, ex-service clubs and people in many other roles.

The Museum will use the funding to organise an exhibition based on an oral history initiative which will bring wartime London back to life through the vivid, individual stories of Fire Brigade veterans, who witnessed the blitz and the devastation of the V1 and V2 rockets. Recorded on DVD, the exhibition will run as a series of talking heads, and copies of the recordings will be sent to the Imperial War Museum. The recordings will also be available for loans to schools and museums.

Museum curator Esther Mann said: "The Home Front Recall Scheme has given the London Fire Brigade Museum the opportunity to record the history of the wartime fire fighters which will last for generations. Without this fund the personal history spoken by themselves may have been lost forever." She added: "This is an exciting project which will hold a host of information for visitors and researchers and guarantee we never forget the efforts made by these brave people in saving London, and saving lives."

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