Arts centre awarded Â£55,000 to celebrate Havant-based company'sÂ history through project
AN arts and heritage centre has been awarded with more than Â£55,000 to record and celebrate an internationally-famous brand's presenceÂ in the heart of a town.
The Spring Arts & Heritage Centre has been given Â£55,900 through the Heritage Lottery Fund to record the history of the Kenwood factory in New Lane.
TheÂ project will tellÂ theÂ story ofÂ theÂ brand founded by Kenneth Wood in 1947 in Woking, and which moved to Havant in 1962, when aboutÂ 700 people were employed atÂ theÂ factory.
TheÂ grant will fund a documentaryÂ featuring interviews withÂ Kenwood workers past and present, tracingÂ the development ofÂ theÂ company over six decades, with a 1960s-themed day for the public being held next month.
Sophie Fullerlove, director of The Spring, said: '˜We are excited to be givenÂ theÂ opportunity to celebrate Havant's role in a pioneering brand and are grateful toÂ theÂ Heritage Lottery Fund for backingÂ theÂ project.
'˜We will be holding a 1960s-themed day in September to celebrate Kenwood's arrival in Havant and we hope as many former and current employees as possible will attend.'
While manufacturing transferred to China inÂ theÂ 1990s,Â theÂ company's headquarters remains in New Lane and has provided both employment and social opportunities for staff over the years.
Mark Welch, managing director of Kenwood, said: '˜TheÂ project will highlightÂ theÂ role Kenwood has played inÂ theÂ community for more than 60 years and enable both current and former workers to record their experiences of working forÂ theÂ company.'
TheÂ project will be launched atÂ TheÂ Spring's free Mixing '˜n' Twisting 1960s-themed day on Saturday, September 29,Â from 11.30am onwards.
Kenwood's iconic vintage van will be on display and John Wood, step-son of founder Ken, will be in attendance to share his memories. There will also be opportunities to try out 1960s nail, hair and make-up styles and watchÂ theÂ classic film Taste of Honey.
The documentaryÂ will feature as part of a temporary exhibition inÂ TheÂ Spring's mezzanine from April next year.
It will also be part of a new interactive Kenwood-themed exhibit inÂ theÂ museum's existing 1950s-60s kitchen. A book featuringÂ theÂ memories of all contributors will also be created.