The project will result in a number of touring films, exhibitions, an accompanying suite of child led films, education packs (for primary and secondary schools), and a media-rich website.

Working with Herefordshire Libraries and Archives, images will be scanned and made accessible via the Herefordshire Histories website. Topics will include: Hop-picking, Hereford Football Club, May Fair, Fownhope Heart of Oak celebrations and Derek Evans Photographic Studio 1950-80s.

“The archive (…) could become a fantastic resource for a wide range of interests in social history, politics, culture, farming and rural life amongst others.” Independent report on Derek Evans’ archive by Russell Roberts 2009

We will involve volunteers, trainees and internships to offer clear career pathway opportunities recruited from across the county. The wider Herefordshire community will be involved in the project but specific targeted groups include disadvantaged young people, migrant workers, showmen, romany travellers, students and older people.

About the archive: The extensive Derek Evans archive contains some 200,000 negatives, 729 exhibition prints and 10 daily log books. A 2009 independent report stated it had: ‘valuable historical, social and cultural significance’. Derek’s work was highly respected and wide ranging. He was a popular and well-known character, involved in local politics with a great love of sport and jazz, as well as being a jobbing photo-journalist for national and regional newspapers and TV companies. He even produced award-winning entries to magazines and international exhibitions.

Focusing on the 1950s-1980s, the project will uncover photographs (some never-before-exhibited, and many others unseen for over fifty years) and record oral histories which recount nostalgic tales of Hop-picking; revel in Hereford Football Club’s moments of glory; take a spin around the Mayfair’s risqué past; stroll down memory lane with Fownhope’s Heart of Oak annual walk and explore the Derek Evans Studio itself, which nurtured many talents and which, by covering fascinating local stories, became a treasure trove of the county’s social history.

The project is led by Catcher Media who are a not-for-profit company  working in partnership with Herefordshire Council’s Libraries, Archive and Learning and Achievement Services. Funded by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund and by The Elmley Foundation, The Beaumont Trust, Wye Valley Brewery, Ledbury, Leominster and Ross-on-Wye Town Councils and our crowd-fund supporters.