School Development Support Agency

Improving Outcomes for Children and Young People

WW1 Shared Pasts Shared Futures

WW1 Shared Pasts Shared Futures

World War 1 - Shared Pasts Shared Futures

The SDSA applied for and received a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to design and deliver a project to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of World War One. Working with partners, we will provide resources and activities to enable young people, their families and individuals with an interest in the subject to engage with an important period in Leicester’s past.

Shared Pasts, Shared Futures

Shared Pasts, Shared Futures will help people to explore, record and preserve the culture and experiences of Leicester’s inhabitants in the period leading up to and during World War One.

Project info

The SDSA is working in partnership with a variety of organisations to deliver a citywide project to commemorate the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War on August 4th 2014.

The project will explore two parallel themes:

  • The first is how people in Leicester used to live and the social and economic impact the war had on them.
  • The second will focus on how the war impacted on the ancestors of members of the city’s newer communities.

To support this work, resources have been developed to encourage people to explore their own and the city’s heritage. Opportunities will be provided for research, the development of specific skills and active involvement in a variety of opportunities. Some of these will enable schools and colleges to engage directly with the project but there will also be wider opportunities for individuals and community groups to get involved in different settings. A key aspect is that people from different generations will be encouraged to work and learn together.

Introduction to Great War In Leicester Resource Packs

The centenary of the First World War is an excellent time to use local original documents to explain what life was like in Leicester before and during the war. The Record Office for Leicestershire, Leicester and Rutland (ROLLR), in conjunction with the Schools Development Support Agency (SDSA) and the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), have produced four Resource Packs highlighting the impact of the war on Leicester and its residents.

The material included in the packs has been sourced from the ROLLR’s extensive archive collections and further information is available from them. Please see our website at or email The packs cover the following four aspects of local life:
WW1 Resource Pack 1 – A Soldier’s Story follows the life of Leicester man Alfred Burrows as he joins the Leicestershire Regiment and goes to fight on the Western Front.
WW1 Resource Pack 2 – The Lives of Children is a guide to what life was like for rich and poor children in the years leading up to 1914.
WW1 Resource Pack 3– Research Guides explain how to undertake your own research using local examples of factories, schools and other buildings.
WW1 Resource Pack 4 – Places of Interest highlights places in Leicester which have a wartime significance from the war memorial in Victoria Park to less well known sites such as the railway station and Secular Hall.

WW1 Resource Pack 5New activity packs are now available to download to support the World War One galleries at Newarke Houses Museum. Three activity packs are available: a family pack, for ages 7-11 years and 11-16 years. The packs are suitable for families, school and community groups and include activities to do in the museum and at home.

Video - Leicester at War Walking Trail

Historic England and Lord Lieutenant’s Writing Competition

Training and workshops offer

Use of Images and logos
You can download images for your own personal or educational use. The image may not be duplicated in any medium for another person or institution.If you use images or text in presentations for educational purposes, you must include with each image or text a copyright notice and acknowledgement to Leicestershire County Council.

Reproduction of images for any other use without permission will infringe regulations and may make an individual liable to civil penalties.If you wish to use an image for any other reason than educational or personal use in digital or any other format you must obtain permission and a fee will usually be charged. Contact us for more info.

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