Gaps in the Archive Oral History Workshops

CAHG Scotland were delighted to introduce a new project at the start of 2023, called Gaps in the Archive. During the course of the project, oral history workshops were hosted at different locations in Scotland in collaboration with members of the CAHG Scotland committee, to ensure that there was a good geographical spread for the workshops. So far the events have been held in Glasgow, Inverness, Perth, Argyll and Bute and Edinburgh, with two more workshops planned to take place in Shetland.

Following the success of the Scottish Council on Archives’ Voices: The Hebridean Story and Voices: The Community Story, two projects focussed on recording oral history interviews with people in the Hebrides and New Scots, a need for further oral history training was identified. Instead of continuing with the themes from the Voices projects, however, it was decided that each participating community group would determine what the gaps are in their collection, and use the training provided to address those gaps and carry out projects that would suit the needs of their archive.

The workshops are given by Dr Alison Chand, Oral History Society trainer and teacher at Strathclyde University Oral History Centre. Everyone who completes the training receives a certificate supported by the Oral History Society and has their participation confirmed by CAHG Scotland so that it could be used for Continued Professional Development.

Representatives from over 20 community groups from across Scotland have so far participated in the workshops. To aid in collaboration, networking and providing support, we asked participants to share information about themselves and their projects, which you can see below.

If you have any questions about the workshops, please contact CAHG Scotland Project Lead Audrey Wilson,

Heart of Newhaven Community SCIO

The Heart of Newhaven Community is a recently-created, volunteer-led charity which has purchased the old Victoria Primary School in Newhaven for use as an inter-generational community hub. The oldest part of the old school, until recently the oldest working primary school in the city, dates back to 1844. We have three main themes for our activities, identified by public consultation: Culture and heritage and Learning and Enterprise, combining to achieve Well-Being.

Several tenant partners have established themselves at the Heart including a variety of artists, childcare providers and the Victorian Schoolroom which is part of the History of Education Centre SCIO. This variety of users enables us to organise community activities and projects which fit our themes.

We are adding to a collection of local history artefacts, many donated since we opened and including recent interviews with elderly locals, up till now in the form of written stories. We now want to create a sound archive which can be accessed by interested visitors and locals alike.


Contact: Heritage Lead Trustee,

Shetland Heritage Connections

Heritage Connections is a partnership project funded by Museums and Galleries Scotland and managed by Shetland Amenity Trust and Shetland Heritage Association. It is exploring what is needed of a heritage network in Shetland, connecting volunteers and equipping them with skills to care for and explore their heritage collections.

The project runs from Oct 2023-Oct 2024 and comprises a range of training and networking opportunities, community conversations and heritage events at locations across the isles.  We are learning what support the voluntary heritage sector needs, strengthening connections, making new ones and supporting volunteers to care for and interact with Shetland’s unique heritage.

Connections made with other Scottish museums, heritage and community archives forums enable us to learn from and feel more connected to the wider Scottish heritage community.

Linked to CAHG Scotland’s Gaps in the Archive, 18 people attended oral history training provided by the Oral History Society, and we are now supporting volunteers to develop their project ideas and consider the voices and stories that are missing.

New recordings will enrich Shetland’s story and enhance Shetland’s oral collections, increasing knowledge of Shetland’s past and present, the people who live and work here, and bring aspects of our heritage to life.

For more information contact: