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Melvyn Stokes AHRC Award

2 March 2017

Lawrence of Arabia

Melvyn Stokes has been awarded £78,887 by the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) for a new twelve-month project, 'Remembering 1960s British cinema-going'. This is a grant for impact and public engagement that follows on from the earlier AHRC-funded project 'Cultural memory and British cinema-going of the 1960s' (1 January 2013-31 December 2015, £324,849), which was designed to collect – by means of questionnaires and interviews – memories of those who went to British cinemas half a century ago. 

'Remembering 1960s British cinema-going' aims to bring the wealth of research produced by the earlier project to the attention of a much wider range of audiences and publics. It will also encourage the use of the digital collection of anonymised research materials (https://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/digital-collections/collections/cinema), an output of the original project, by members of the wider community as well as scholars.

To achieve these aims, the new project will organise a series of 44 events across the UK. Three of these will be large ‘immersive 60s cinema’ screenings, recreating some of the atmosphere of sixties cinema-going with the aid of UCLU Drama Society. The project will collaborate on other events with local civic and history societies, film clubs, and branches of the University of the Third Age. 

Since the research has identified a different culture of cinema-going amongst some groups, including members of the BAME and LGBT communities, these findings will be presented to and discussed with members of the groups concerned. Since the memories we have collected throw considerable light on British history of the 1960s, the new project will also demonstrate the relevance of our research to teachers and students of AS/A-level courses on modern British history through a series of events organised in collaboration with schools.