Looking to the communities of the past can directly inspire the answers to these questions. Maybe people could connect to their heritage to feel a sense of place, a sense of identity and ‘rootedness’, in a way that is relevant to their lives. Maybe wider communities can be created in museums by ensuring that people from disenfranchised backgrounds find a ‘home’ and share learning possibilities in the museum environment. Maybe it is extending beyond the academic/intellectual framework that informs traditional museum culture, to also engage with, in a sustainable way, skilled craftspeople, artists, storytellers and musicians to form creative spaces, who intersect with, and are informed by, the collections held in the museum. Maybe by having such an inclusive environment, we can directly mirror the coherent, collectively organised communities of the past.
Key Objective: Living and working in a remote rural area in the far North of Scotland I applied to participate in the Cyprus Programme to see if there were any useful comparisons between the two countries to explore opportunities for sharing/learning from one another as to how best to incorporate traditional skills back into fiercely competitive economies.
September 2015 saw myself and four other cultural heritage professionals travel from Scotland to the island of Cyprus under the Erasmus+ cultural research exchange programme through ArchNetwork. The theme of the programme was entitled ‘Empowering Communities’ and took the form of a structured training course. Our home for the week was to be in Pano Lefkara […]
In September 2015, I was able to participate in a Erasmus+ cultural heritage exchange to the island of Cyprus. Our base camp for the trip was a set of apartments called Althlesi Heights in Pano Lefkara, a village in the south-west foothills of the Troodos Mountains. There were five of us who travelled on the […]
Learning about Lefkara Tuesday 15th September 2015. Our all-female, party of five had travelled from Scotland to engage with the Erasmus+ course, Empowering Communities in Cyprus. The group consisted of heritage & education professionals with definite interests museum practice, interpretation, learning and community engagement. Although, through the week other interests & skills would surface as we […]
“Discussion took place about how this type of activity could be promoted – both in Cyprus and back home in Scotland, if foraging walks or mountain biking trails could be advertised either as written texts, mobile phone applications – or as guided tours, with descriptions of the local environment, plants and wildlife incorporated into them. […]
During our first trip to the hills around Lefkara, to see ancient olive grows with trees of around 1000 years old or more, it soon became evident that Cyprus, like the UK, is a prosperous country with an aspiring and educated population that no longer want to continue working on the land when they […]