The Lost Words for Dorset's schools

by Richard Bradford in Dorset, England, United Kingdom

The Lost Words for Dorset's schools
We did it
On 10th May 2018 we successfully raised £4,001 with 107 supporters in 35 days

To provide a copy of The Lost Words by Robert Macfarlane and Jackie Morris to every Infant, Primary and Junior School in Dorset.

by Richard Bradford in Dorset, England, United Kingdom

It has been a busy year for The Lost Words in Dorset..!

As we reach the end of the autumn term, here is a brief update regarding The Lost Words in Dorset:

With many sources of help, The Lost Words books have been presented to, or are on their way to, the 174 state schools in Dorset (including the Special Schools and Learning Centres) as follows:

  • 13 libraries presenting books to 59 schools
  • 33 Dorset Reading Partners presenting books to 33 schools
  • 15 volunteers with Artsreach presenting books to 15 schools
  • 6 bookshops presenting books to 9 schools
  • 11 volunteers presenting books to 58 schools

We estimate that over 70 volunteers have helped us present books to the schools.  These many kindnesses have saved us about £500 in distribution costs.  We have now used these savings to buy more copies of The Lost Words which we hope to offer to:

We estimate that about 50,000 children in Dorset now have access to The Lost Words book - a remarkable achievement in one year.

We are running 10 artist-led workshops in schools and these should be completed by the end of January.  These have been funded, in part, by Dorset AONB's Sustainable Development Fund.  The children's work from these workshops will be curated by Emma Fernandez and a small touring display (four panels) for use in libraries, schools, literary festivals etc will be produced.

In addition to completing the presentation of the books to schools in 2019, we are also working with:

  • Claire Platten, a Ranger at Thorncombe Wood near Dorchester is developing a seasonal Lost Words Trail around the Wood (which is next to Hardy's birthplace).  Claire hopes to get this ready for an opening in late January.
  • Moors Valley Country Park, who are planning to host a 'Patchwork of Lost Words' exhibition between April and June 2019.
  • Alacrify, a Dorchester based firm that designs and builds websites, have supported The Lost Words in Dorset from the start.  They have now offered to design and build us a website to showcase the various aspects of this initiative in Dorset - eg. the work being done by schools, in Memory Cafes, the Lost WordsTrail planned for Thorncombe Wood and now the exhibition proposed at Moors Valley Country Park.  They have offered to design and build the website pro-bono, such is their belief in the message carried by the book.
  • Artsreach, the Dorset-based charity that brings live theatre, music, dance and family shows to the heart of rural communities, who are developing a major programme of activities on the theme of The Lost Words for 2019 and 2020.

Many thanks for all your help in making this initiative such an amazing success in 2018. 

We hope to keep you posted about further developments in 2019.  In the meantime, here are just a few of the highlights of the past  months.

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