What do we really know about Rotherham?

by | 31 May 2024 | Community Event, Heritage, Rotherham

Discovering World Class Rotherham – National Civic Day, 15th June 2024

Whether you have lived in the same town all your life or you have recently moved to the area, you may not be aware of the town’s history and the people, places or events that have shaped it over the years. Perhaps we have become too busy to notice the beauty that surrounds us, or stop to ponder how streets and places were named? Or if Rotherham has been a significant contributor to national and world events?

Take time to find out about Rotherham’s past at Rotherham District Civic Society’s National Civic Day event and exhibition ‘Discovering World Class Rotherham’ at Clifton Park Museum on Saturday 15th June from 10.00am to 4.00pm.

They will “take over” the Museum for the day with a packed timetable of activities and free entry to their exhibition which showcases past events, places and people that have made Rotherham a place of significance!

Event organiser David Wadkin said: “We have a lot to be proud of and our very own Yorkshire poet, Ian McMillan, was delighted to dedicate a specially written Civic Poem for our event. Ian was given access to the wealth of materials used to create the exhibition. The poem, ‘Rotherham Flowing’, will be launched at the exhibition.

“Since 2011, events have been held all over the country enabling communities and individuals to collaborate and interact with the place they live in. Rotherham District Civic Society decided it was time that they hosted a day of celebration to enable everyone to say, “I am proud of where I live”.”

The Society has unveiled over 30 Blue Plaques since 2012 dedicated to the people, places and events of Rotherham around the wider borough. There are also 16 Grade I Listed sites to explore. The ‘Discovering Rotherham’ map identifies these places supported with an audio and visual guide and all visitors to the event will receive a complimentary copy.

Free guided town walking tours will also run throughout the day.

To complement the work of the Council’s new cycle ways, one of Yorkshire’s oldest cycling clubs (that just happens to be located in the heart of Rotherham) has created a 54-mile Civic Cycling Trail to visit as many of the listed building and Blue Plaques around the wider Borough as possible. They will launch it on the day – watch out for them and give them a cheer as they pass by.

You will also have the opportunity to board a vintage Red Bus and take a short ride with one of the Society’s Rotherham story tellers.

For younger visitors, don’t miss children’s art workshops through the day exploring the theme of “I am proud of where I live” with a professional artist.

Write a short story or a poem to enter into a competition on the day for all ages. The winning entries will receive a cash prize and have their work published. Ian McMillan will be one of the judges who will provide feedback on the top entries.

The resident expert on the Rotherham Walker family will be on hand to talk through the latest research and findings and will be revealing if there are bodies still in the Walker Mausoleum!

There will be a lot to see, do and experience through the day.

David added: “If the first celebration of Civic Day is a success then we will look at developing the theme in forthcoming years. Rotherham has certainly a lot of opportunities and good news stories to be told!”