The Hinge of Fate: Living with Uncertainty in 1942 will tell the story of both the soldiers of the regiment and families on the ‘Home Front’ in Lancaster during the darkest days of the Second World War.
At that time Britain had known little but defeat with the prospect of victory, even survival, far from apparent. Yet this was to prove the watershed year with the Allies shifting from being on the defence to going over to the attack.
Chair of the King’s Own Royal (Lancaster) Regiment Museum Trust, Robin Ashcroft, said: “This funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund is tremendous news for both ourselves and for our home and host - the City Museum.
"It will allow us to tell the story of, arguably, the most important year of the war through the eyes of not just the regiment’s soldiers, but also from the perspective of their families and communities back home in Lancaster. At a time when we’re all having to face uncertainty ourselves, with the pandemic and war clouds over Eastern Europe, we can all relate to the uncertainties our forebears went through eighty years ago.”
The Hinge of Fate exhibition will run for six months in parallel with the King’s Own Royal (Lancaster) Regiment Museum’s permanent gallery in The City Museum.
Located in the ground floor special exhibition gallery it will run along with a series of events throughout Lancaster and the surrounding area, along with a dedicated heritage trail.
The wider programme will include joint events with The Duke’s Theatre, Morecambe Women’s Institute, Lancaster Music Festival, Sandylands Primary School, and Global Link. This will have a particular focus on wide participation and will include film making workshops, music and dance, cooking – and eating – the 1942 way, making Light Art, life as a refugee, and come the November 11, Remembrance.
Robin Ashcroft said: “This award is a sign of confidence in the innovative approach to museum exhibition we hope to bring to develop. It has come about through not only hard work, but also the close, cooperative working between the Museum Trust and Lancaster City Council’s Museum Service curatorial staff. Significantly, it has also encompassed a much wider community, to reflect that the Second World War was very much a ‘Citizen’s War’. I’d like to thank everybody who has been involved to date and look forward to the whole of Lancaster and beyond understanding something of their families lives eighty years ago.”
Councillor Sandra Thornberry, Lancaster City Council’s cabinet member with responsibility for arts and culture, said: “I am delighted that the King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum Trustees, working in partnership with the City Museums, have been successful in securing this funding. This project will see cultural organisations across the City working together to tell the story of life in 1942 and its relevance to today’s world.”
The Hinge of Fate: Living with Uncertainty in 1942 will run from September 2022 to February 2023 in the Special Exhibition Gallery of The City Museum, Market Square, Lancaster. Entry will be free.