The Award winning Malmesbury Voices collection contains about 250 audio recordings of local residents telling stories about themselves, the town, surrounding villages and local events. Topics include leisure, business, education, the Carnivals, churches, farming and shops. A section added in 2020 is devoted to memories of the Linolite light fittings factory which existed in the town from 1941 to 1993.
The collection provides an insight into local life and language. Some of the early recordings are with people born in Malmesbury at the beginning of the 20th century.
The collection is accessible via touch screen in the Museum.
In 2020 the Malmesbury Voices project was awarded two prestigious prizes:
- Firstly, in June, Bill Reed was awarded a Personal Achievement Award from The British Association for Local History for the Malmesbury Voices Project for his extensive and longstanding voluntary work in local history. Bill is responsible for the collection of all the recordings, and their associated images, that make up “Malmesbury Voices”.
- Secondly, in November, the Malmesbury Voices project won the South West Region Marsh Trust award for “Volunteers for Museum Learning”; this being run in conjunction with the British Museum. Bill made the recordings, Peter Holland created the interactive display for the Voices in the Museum and Janet Casselden used the Voices in projects at local schools.
Samples from the collection:
Here is a link to a Malmesbury Voices podcast on Malmesbury Community Radio.
Bill Reed introduces the Malmesbury Voices project and plays some choice examples.