Boxes lead the way along memory lane

Residents at Northlands Care Home in Morpeth looking at items from a memory box that was brought in. John Stainton.  GM017308

Residents at Northlands Care Home in Morpeth looking at items from a memory box that was brought in. John Stainton. GM017308

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THE past is coming back to life for older residents in Northumberland.

The County Council’s library service has made up memory boxes of everyday items from the 1930s to the 1960s to help recall the old days, or teach younger generations about times gone by.

They are loaned free to individuals, charities, residential care homes, health workers and community organisations, as well as schools.

And while they are based at Morpeth Library, the boxes can be delivered to any library in the county.

Boxes have recently been loaned to Northlands Care Home in Morpeth and the town’s branch of the Royal Air Force Association, which borrowed a box of World War II memorabilia for a 1940s event in honour of Armed Forces Day.

Members enjoyed cakes baked from 1940s recipes and war-time songs, and the memory boxes were a huge talking point, with many people still remembering their ID Card numbers and recounting wartime experiences.

The library service is now seeking donations of more items to refresh and extend the range of boxes it can offer.

Items are required on the themes of fashion, Second World War, entertainment, childhood, schooldays, housewives’ choice, shopping, rural life, holidays and travel.

County Board Member for Community Infrastructure and Culture Val Tyler said: “These boxes are extremely popular with elderly residents and informative for our younger generations.

“If you have any items that you could offer to such a good home and good cause, please do get in touch.”