Luton’s First World War stories at Wardown Museum

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Luton’s War Stories, an exhibition marking the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, is being held at Wardown Park Museum.

The display, part of a season of events about the conflict, will run from August 5 to January 4 and examine how it affected Luton.

Visitors can discover the museum’s history as a wartime hospital, read stories about ordinary Lutonians from 1914-18 and see many precious objects donated by the community and rare artefacts discovered deep within the museum’s stores.

The building is steeped in history and to develop facilities Luton Culture applied to the Heritage Lottery Fund for £1.67million. This grant is part of a phased programme to conserve and protect the Grade II listed building, while reflecting and celebrating the stories of today’s communities through the lives of those who lived there in the past.

The website has been created by Luton Culture and the University of Bedfordshire and is open for anyone to contribute WW1-related content.

Other free activities at the museum in the WW1 season: Healing Minds, sensory exhibition on the effects and treatment of shellshock (September 30-October 26, 10am-5pm; Luton’s Great War, talk on July 23, 6.30pm-7.30pm; Wardown Park Military Hospital, talk on August 13, 6.30pm-7.30pm; Biscot Camp, Luton, talk on August 27, 6.30pm-7.30pm.

Healing Wounds, a specially commissioned play about the friction, fun and fury between three army officers from different backgrounds as they are forced to share a ward together while recovering from the effects of war, on November 7/8 at 1.30pm and 7.30pm.