A Unique Minecraft Project Brings Archives To A New Audience

A Unique Minecraft Project Brings Archives To A New Audience
A Unique Minecraft Project Brings Archives To A New Audience

The East Riding Archives has announced the success of their Blockdown project, designed to capture young people’s stories of the COVID-19 lockdown.

The Audience Agency’s Digitally Democratising Archives project funded by £4500 funded the East Riding Blockdown (ERB) project, thought to be the first of its kind in the country.

By implementing digital technology, ten projects across England were funded by the Audience Agency.

In her explanation, archivist Hannah Stamp said:

“The ERB project was an offshoot of the East Riding Archives’ larger covid-19 experiences project, in which we asked East Riding communities to donate their recorded experiences of the pandemic and lockdown to the archives.”

“Those records will be permanently preserved in the collections, as part of over 800 years of East Riding documented . One thing that was missing from what the archives team received was the youth voice.”

As part of the East Riding Blockdown, a virtual recreation of the Treasure House in Beverley was created in Minecraft. Afterwards, archivist Hannah Stamp entered the Archiverse and archived the participants’ creations with the real-world East Riding Archives.

Young people had the opportunity to explore the virtual Treasure House, meet the team, and see what other young people had created.

Hannah added:

“We’re now experimenting with our Oculus Virtual Reality headset and the Sketchfab 3D platform https://sketchfab.com/EastRidingArchives  to look at creative ways of interacting with the 3D creations that participants had built in our Archiverse.

“In association with East Riding Museums and the council’s Policy team, we are also looking to bring our Archiverse workshop to local schools working with traveller, migrant and refugee communities, exploring diverse lived experiences and archiving these as the project’s first phase.”

As a result, young people’s experiences of lockdown have been preserved in an archive collection.

It is still possible to participate in the project by attending an Archiverse Minecraft event, or sending in your lockdown creations with the registration form (available from the project website).

At the Treasure House in Beverley on 24 and 27 October, there will be events during the October half term.

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