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Rotherham heritage site lit up

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The importance of major historical landmarks in Rotherham is being highlighted in a unique way as part of a heritage project.

Three heritage sites across Rotherham are benefiting from new programmes after Rotherham Council’s Museums, Arts and Heritage team were successful in securing £38,174 from Historic England as part of its COVID-19 Emergency Funding.

The funding focuses on Keppel’s Column in Thorpe Hesley, Catcliffe Cone in Catcliffe, and Waterloo Kiln in Swinton and will allow a range of activities using arts and new technologies to make it easier for residents to engage with their local history.

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At Catcliffe, an amazing installation couldn’t be shared as an event due to Covid restrictions but the immersive sound and video of animation being projected onto the 20 metre high cone has been captured in film.

Working with a dedicated community group for the site, artists Rob and Matt Vale were appointed to create a video light installation to be projected directly onto the Kiln.

The theme is transformation and Brinsworth Whitehill Primary School, Illuminos and Studio Bokehgo worked on the project.

The site is all that remains of a glassworks factory that was built c1740 for William Fenney. It is the earliest surviving example in Western Europe.

Lisa Haworth, museums, arts and heritage manager at Rotherham Council, said: “Covid has given us the opportunity to think really differently about the past, present and the future, and where we are and the connections people have with their heritage.

“These sites have been part of the landscape for many generations and in many memories. This project was about capturing some of that and starting those conversations about those heritage sites.”

Further films are set to be produced featuring installations at Keppel’s Column and Waterloo Kiln and the overall aim is to discover potential future uses for the sites.

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Tom Austen
Tom grew up in Aston, Rotherham and studied Human Geography at Nottingham Trent University before developing a passion for promoting Rotherham and a nose for a good story.

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