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Aladdin’s cave of Thamesmead treasures

PUBLISHED: 07:00 01 March 2019

Sharon Casey sifting through the memories. Photo: Peabody

Sharon Casey sifting through the memories. Photo: Peabody

Archant

An Aladdin’s cave of memories surrounding life in Thamesmead has been unearthed.

Sharon Casey unfolds local memories. Photo: PeabodySharon Casey unfolds local memories. Photo: Peabody

It will now become the backbone of the Thamesmead Community Archive.

The person taken on to make that happen is archivist Sharon Casey.

She now has the job of ploughing through the mountain of documents and pictures and put it all in some sort of order.

She said it is literally a treasure trove of important documents, photographs and memories.

Despite only being launched last month with an open day at the Peabody Parkview Hub, Yarnton Way, the scheme is already revealing new insights into the first 50 years of Thamesmead.

As well as the memories, photos and other materials that have been contributed by local people a huge cache of Greater London Council and Thamesmead Town Limited documents from the 1960s, 70s and 80s has been discovered in a garage in Southmere, following a tip-off from residents.

Sharon won the job of Thamesmead Community Archive manager and has been employed by housing company Peabody to manage the project.

She said: “We couldn’t believe that such a wealth of material had been stored away by previous organisations before being rediscovered. It’s a real Aladdin’s cave.

“There are literally thousands of documents, including original plans, more than 6,000 maps and even the minutes of meetings from 30 and 40 years ago. It’s going to be quite a task going through it all but it promises to be hugely rewarding and will tell us so much about Thamesmead’s history.

“It’s exciting to imagine just what else might be out there, we’d love residents to get in touch to tell us just what they’ve got stashed away at home.”

She is also called on anyone local who want to get involved on a voluntary basis to get in touch.

Sharon said they can become part of the Community Archive project or even have their own memories, documents and photographs of Thamesmead they’d like to share.

They need to be around until June this year and will receive training and help build a new website.

Anyone wishing to take part in this project should email sharon.casey@peabody.org.uk.

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