• Thu. Dec 7th, 2023

North East Connected

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Last chance to listen to ‘voices of Yarm’ in local library as exhibition nears closing date

People in and around a Teesside community are being urged to take a last look at a popular local exhibition before it closes on Christmas Eve.
As part of the run-up to the opening of its new branch in Yarm Library, Newcastle Building Society recorded a series of interviews with local people about their experiences of growing up, living and working in the village.
Local photographer Pete Robinson was commissioned to take portrait images of some of the interviewees, which are on show in the library, alongside headphones for library visitors to listen to individual memories.
Since opening in early October, the Voices Of Yarm exhibition has attracted hundreds of visitors, with highlights of the recordings on offer, including a chance encounter on Yarm High Street with Jimi Hendrix, stories of the local Home Guard, recollections of the River Tees bubbling yellow and memories of the moving events that formed part of the Yarm 1914 project.
And it has proved so popular that Newcastle Building Society is considering running a second set of local interviews for a follow-up exhibition next year.
The audio recordings of the Voices Of Yarm interviews are also hosted on the Society’s website at newcastle.co.uk/your-newcastle/community/voices-of-yarm-exhibition/ and will remain available after the library exhibition has closed.
The innovative partnership between Newcastle Building Society and Stockton Borough Council to introduce a branch into the library was the first of its kind in the UK.
The development formed part of a £10m investment programme that Newcastle Building Society has been undertaking this year to improve the way it delivers its service to customers.
Damian Thompson, Customer Director at Newcastle Building Society, says:  “We set up the Voices Of Yarm project as a way of connecting with and celebrating the community in which our new branch was opening, and the memories of how the town has evolved over the years are fascinating.
“Our interviewees included both people who were born and brought up in Yarm, and others who moved here at different stages of their lives, but they all really brought their experiences to life and their interviews make a fascinating listen for anyone interested in community and social history.
“We’ve had so much positive feedback about the exhibition over the last couple of months, and we’re very pleased to have helped to share so much wonderful local knowledge with new audiences.
“Our branch team has had a very warm welcome from local residents on our return to Yarm, and we’re proud of the work we’ve done alongside Stockton Borough Council to enable us to be part of this terrific community facility.”