New projects allow us to celebrate our communities

COMMENT: The return of good weather shouldn’t bring dread

Have your say

Our history does far more than just inform us of where we’ve come from. It gives us a sense of who we are and where we’re going as well.

Capturing snapshots of the past is a great way of reconnecting with a community and lets us all feel more in touch with what’s important to us.

That’s why a living history project to record the memories of people from Hayling Island, using a photograph of a quirky attraction from the 1960s, is a great idea.

We’re sure many people will remember Monkey Island. Spotting a colony of apes on an island in the middle of a boating lake isn’t the kind of thing you forget in a hurry.

And now all those who do recall seeing the monkeys – or other interesting and unique sights around Hayling over the years – will get a chance to share their memories with everyone else.

There are those who will say that £41,000 is an awful lot of money to award an art project in these financially-challenged times.

But imaginative ideas such as this one from art group Dot to Dot have a valuable role to play in our society.

We know that there are plenty of good and worthwhile projects out there that would have been as equally deserving of a grant like this from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

In fact, three other community groups in the Havant area have received money from the same fund to put on a diverse range of projects.

An area of wasteland will now be transformed into a beautiful outdoor area for conservation following consultation with local children, while the library at Staunton Country Park will receive two new stained glass windows.

These projects should be viewed as an investment in our communities. It’s a chance to do something good for the local area and that’s not something to be scoffed at.

So we hope people in Havant will get behind all these exciting new schemes and enjoy taking a trip down memory lane, because remembering the past is a great way to feel passionate about the future.