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When War Hit Home: Hull and the First World War

To mark the centenary of the First World War, an exhibition ‘When War Hit Home: Hull and the First World War’ will open at Ferens Art Gallery on 19 July. The exhibition explores the effects of the First World War on Hull and its people, using Hull Museums’ extensive collection of objects and images.

Visitors can read personal stories from those who lived through the War, as well as find out about recruitment, life on the front line, the contribution of men, women and children that stayed at home, the war at sea and the role of fishermen and merchant seamen from Hull. The exhibition looks at the devastating effects of the Zeppelin raids on the city and changes in people’s attitudes towards Hull’s German community.

Councillor Geraghty, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said:

“It provides an opportunity for people to understand the impact the First World War had on Hull and the people who lived through it one hundred years ago.”

The exhibition includes previously unseen photographs from Hull during the war, some of which will be life-sized and have been digitised in preparation for the exhibition. A number of objects that have been stored for decades have also been conserved and will be displayed for the first time, including an early gas mask, some delicate costume from the era and a Hull and Barnsley roll of honour. 

Paula Gentil, Curator at Hull Museums said:

“Some powerful and poignant personal stories have resulted from our research into the collections at the museums. After an initial enthusiasm for the war, local families underwent an agonising four years of war and, for those that survived, their lives were changed forever. This exhibition really highlights the important contribution Hull men, women and children made.”

The exhibition, in Gallery 4 at Ferens Art Gallery will be open Saturday 19 July 2014 to Sunday 4 January 2014.

The exhibition is being launched with a day of free activities, talks and live music from the era at Ferens on Saturday 19 July. Talks will be given by Honorary Alderman John Robinson, Dr. Robb Robinson from the Maritime Historical Studies Centre, the BBC’s Adrian Van Klaveren, Dr. Rosemary Wall and Dr. Nick Evans from the University of Hull, and Arthur Credland who will talk about the Zeppelin raids.

To find out more visit the exhibition website.

The launch has been organised as a collaboration between Hull Museums, Heritage Learning and the University of Hull and is supported by funding from Arts Council England and the Arts and Humanities Research Council.