Founder's Day, 12th July 2012
July 12th, 2012, being the 80th Anniversary of the death of Tomas Bata, the Reminiscence and Resource Centre decided to commemorate the event by laying a tribute at his statue in East Tilbury. We were honoured to have Charles Pignal, the Great Grandson of Tomas Bata, a representative of the Czech High Commission and various local dignitaries join us for the event.
Brighton Students Visit East Tilbury
On Monday 14 January the Bata Reminiscence Centre based in East Tilbury library welcomed a group of 29 students and their lecturers from Brighton University.
Alicja Borkowska, senior lecturer, wrote a short summary of the visit:
All the students are 2nd and 3rd year undergraduate architecture students on the Architecture RIBA Part 1 BA(Hons) degree course at Brighton University. Every year the students are given a place to investigate and based on their research and findings they will propose hypothetical architectural proposals for the place.
This year the students have been asked to investigate the former factory town of Bata. We are particularly interested in the social aspect of the place and will be asking the students to re-imagine a new use for the factory buildings. The purpose of the visit was the show the students the factory and associated buildings and to give them as much insight as possible into how the place used to be and what it is like now. The Bata Reminiscence and Resource Centre has been invaluable in arranging a walking tour of the whole town, access into the factory buildings as well as providing archive access at the library and first hand accounts on what the place was like. We also plan that the students will return individually to the site to take further surveys and return to the library to get further information from the BRRC.
The project will run for 5 months (January - end of May 2013) resulting in an end of year degree show. We have loosely structured the year into 3 tasks, each student will propose a small architectural intervention, following with a larger look at the planning and structure of the town and ending with a smaller design proposal.
Essex Wildlife Trust Nature Park, Mucking
MikeTarbard, Chairman of Reminiscence and Resource Centre, and May Rippingale, Secretary, with Sir John Tusa and his son Sacha at the official opening, by Sir David Attenborough, of the Essex Wildlife Trust Thurrock Thameside Nature Park on 11 May 2013.
Grant from Heritage Lottery Fund.
The Reminiscence and Resource Centre have recently been awarded a Grant of £10,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund in order to refurbish the War Memorial.
Sometime ago the War Memorial was vandalised and the Eternal Flame was stolen, presumably by metal thieves. This was replaced with one which is made from one of the new plastic materials which look like bronze. In order to ensure that the name plaques on the memorial did not meet a similar fate they have been stored in the Reminiscence and Resource Centre, only being put back on the Memorial for the Remembrance Day Services each November.
We have now been awarded this Grant, along with one of £3,000 from the Welcome Forum and £1,000 from Thurrock Council to allow us to have new name plaques made, in stone, have the Memorial and surrounding area refurbished and cleaned. At the same time we are having the names of those we have traced, but who were not on the original list, added. The original plaques will then be sited in East Tilbury Village Church.
If you are related to any of the Bata Employees who died during World War II please contact us and we will then keep you informed as the project progresses.
It is hoped to have some of the work done, if not completed, by this Remembrance Day.
Volunteers from the Reminiscence and Resource Centre had a stand within the Heritage Zone at the Orsett Show which saw a lot of activity and interest.
Many people who visited the show had family and friends who had worked for British Bata during it's heyday at East Tilbury and were interested in the work of the Centre.
Two views of the Bata Stand at the Orsett Show - our new banner in pride of place.
We were really pleased that the work being carried out on the War Memorial was completed in time for Remembrance Day. The local School children once again laid a wreath on behalf of the Bata Community at their Remembrance Service on
November 11th at 11a.m.