People, Pride and Progress: recording the histories of LGBTQ+ railway workers

People, Pride and Progress: recording the histories of LGBTQ+ railway workers

Two people holding a Pride flag
Alison Kay, National Railway Museum’s Archives Manager and Ashlynn Welburn, Oral History Project Archivist at Eurostar. Photo: JK Doran

National Lottery Grants for Heritage – £10,000 to £250,000

Date awarded
Local Authority
The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum
Award Given
Through the collection of real-life stories, this project aims to spotlight the LGBTQ+ community’s contribution to the railways for the first time.

The railway industry may no longer be the often-hostile environment for LGBTQ+ employees as it once was, but little information and few personal records of their involvement currently exist. 

This project is set to change that by working with young LGBTQ+ volunteers trained in oral history. They will conduct interviews with up to 70 LGBTQ+ people who have worked in the railway industry.  

Their lived experiences will be documented and added to the Science Museum Group’s permanent collection. 

The new collection will be available through all five museums including the National Railway Museum in York and the Science and Industry Museum in Manchester. It will be the group’s first digital archive to be available in this way.   

Helen Featherstone, Director, England, North at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “This transformative project to record the heritage of LGBTQ+ people in the railway industry will ensure that the voices and memories of the community can be heard for generations to come.” 

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