Her­itage project plugs into Oban power-house

The Oban Times - - NEWS -

A man who started his own mu­seum of Mayan mu­sic 5,000 miles away in Gu­ata­mala is com­ing to Oban to in­spire oth­ers, writes Kathie Grif­fiths.

Sa­muel Franco will be at the Rock­field Cen­tre on Satur­day, Septem­ber 15, to talk about his work and join in a dis­cus­sion about dif­fer­ent ways com­mu­ni­ties can cel­e­brate and man­age their own her­itage.

Or­gan­is­ers are hop­ing the event, which is free, will at­tract crafts­peo­ple as well as groups, clubs and vol­un­teers from the area and is­lands, who will bring along ex­am­ples of their work as well as their voices, views and ideas on what could be achieved.

Na­tional project Com­mu­nity Her­itage Scot­land is co-host­ing the day with CHArts which is de­liv­er­ing a ma­jor net­work­ing ini­tia­tive to link up all as­pects of cul­ture in Ar­gyll.

Cather­ine Gil­lies of Com­mu­nity Her­itage Scot­land, also a for­mer di­rec­tor of Dunol­lie mu­seum and cas­tle, said: ‘A huge per­cent­age of Scot­tish her­itage is man­aged by vol­un­teers and small in­de­pen­dent or­gan­i­sa­tions – in Ar­gyll and Bute it’s most of it. They are do­ing an in­cred­i­ble job of feed­ing into the tourism pack­age of Ar­gyll but it’s not ap­pre­ci­ated enough just what a gift the con­tri­bu­tion of vol­un­teers’ time is to the eco­nomic well-be­ing of Ar­gyll and we need to start mea­sur­ing just what that in-put is.

‘What we know is that there is huge en­ergy and huge en­thu­saism in com­mu­ni­ties but it is hard work for them look­ing af­ter lo­cal her­itage and peo­ple are con­cerned about sus­tain­ing it.

‘By or­gan­is­ing these dis­cus­sion days we are col­lect­ing ideas on how we can col­lec­tively help and move for­ward. Com­mu­nity her­itage is multi-faceted.’

‘We are all in it for the love of it,’ she added. ‘The fact our sec­ond day is com­ing to Oban is very much a re­flec­tion on what we have here on the west coast. It’s a power-house of com­mu­nity her­itage and, in­clud­ing its is­lands, is at the fore­front of so­cial en­ter­prise. I think we are go­ing to have a great day, cap­tur­ing ideas.’

A team from the Univer­sity of St An­drews look­ing at in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity her­itage, par­tic­u­larly in Latin Amer­ica, will also be at the Rock­field event, along with Mr Franco who is a mem­ber of the In­ter­na­tional Coun­cil of Museums Latin Amer­i­can and Caribbean Re­gional Al­liance.

The day is free and runs from 10am to 4pm, with work­shops and pre­sen­ta­tions.

In­ter­ested? Email Cather­ine Gil­lies at cather­ine@er­ga­di­a­her­itage.com or call 07833 133928.

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