15 February 2012
Words by Rhodri ClarkA course for members of the public to learn how to read and interpret historic documents has proved an insta
Words by Rhodri Clark
A course for members of the public to learn how to read and interpret historic documents has proved an instant hit.
The course, organised by Newport University and Gwent Archives, is being held over 12 weeks from 10 January. All 15 places on the Level 4-accredited course were booked quickly. By mid-January there was a waiting list of nine people, who hope the course will be repeated.
Course participants are attending weekly sessions at the new Gwent record office in Ebbw Vale, where deputy archivist Tony Hopkins provides an insight into handwriting and methods of transcription for documents dating from 1550 to 1900. The course also examines different types of documents, why they were produced and what they tell us today.
Bursaries were offered to course participants from the deprived Heads of the Valleys area, which includes Ebbw Vale. The course also attracted people from outside that area. Claire Syder, Newport University’s officer for community-based learning development, said: ‘We would like to repeat the course but we would have to staff it.’ She said the initial course had been possible because Mr Hopkins gave a morning each week to the venture.