Archives Explored 2016 at Winsford Library

Medieval deeds to help tell the story of salt.

Winsford Library will be running another ‘Explore your Archive’ event on the morning of Saturday 3rd December when visitors to the library will be able to look at some archive documents not usually on public view.

During this year’s ‘Explore Your Archives’ week Cheshire Archives & Local Studies have been revealing the story of some of the oldest documents kept in the county’s archive.

Lisa Greenhalgh, Senior Archivist said, “Medieval deeds are fascinating, changing hands over centuries they record details of people, property, land and business, including the salt trade.  The handwriting is very different but thanks to the ink used they can still be read today.   If you’re interested in deciphering the details we have a new volunteer project – if you’ve got the skills we need your help.”

Visitors including children and families can also get ‘hands-on’ with a medieval-style craft activity using historic ink and pens with Rachel Manning, conservator from Cheshire Archives and Local Studies.  Staff from the Saltscape Landscape Partnership will be on hand to showcase their heritage skills courses and events, and to hear from local people with stories and memories of Winsford’s important role in the salt industry.

Members of the public will also be able to have a dig through the ‘Salt Box’.  This is a yellow ‘Cheshire Grit’ box just like the roadside boxes up and down  the country containing rock salt mined in Winsford. It’s now on permanent loan to Winsford library and contains copies  of precious documents, photos and records from the salt collections telling the stories of the key players in the industry from the visionaries to the workers and explores the changing landscape with historical maps and plans.