Shapinsay Speaks: Stories, Stones & Bones

Shapinsay Development Trust has received a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Stories, Stones
and Bones Grant it was announced today for an exciting community project entitled
‘Shapinsay Speaks’.

The initiative is led by Shapinsay Development Trust which has been given £5,100 to archive and share peoples precious memories of the island’s past. Senior members of the community have been recording their recollections with a team of volunteer interviewers and now the gathered material is to be made available on a new MASH (Memories about Shapinsay) web portal.


Jim Hepburn of Kirkton, Shapinsay (left) amongst the first to be interviewed by project volunteer Kenny Meason (photo L Collinson)

The information will also be used to produce learning materials for school children and will involve input from pupils at Shapinsay School. The project is part of Scotland’s Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology.

Shapinsay Development Trust (SDT) works to ensure the future of the resilient community of Shapinsay, supporting and initiating projects which benefit the island. Their funding application was prompted by local peoples’ concerns that valuable oral accounts of the island’s rich local heritage were not being shared and preserved for others to enjoy. However, thanks to HLF funding, this has now been made possible.

Project leader and SDT Community Action officer Lynne Collinson said:

“I’m thrilled that we have received this funding for something which many islanders feel so passionately about. People are excited that their eye witness accounts of life and traditions on the island from the past 80 years or so will be made available to others.”

Commenting, Lucy Casot, Head of HLF in Scotland, said:

“The Heritage Lottery Fund is a key partner in the Year of History, Heritage and Archaeology and it’s our ambition that people of all ages will have the chance to discover something new about the heritage they care about. We’re delighted that, thanks to funding from the National Lottery, ‘Shapinsay Speaks’ will be opening the door to fun, learning and everlasting memories for many people as we celebrate this special year,”


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