Local and Community History Month – May 2023

Local and Community History Month is annually celebrated in May. It’s dedicated to raising awareness and promoting the rich and long history of local communities in the United Kingdom. During this month, activities are held across the country. From field trips and exhibitions to lectures and seminars, you’ll find yourself engaged in an educational yet exhilarating whirlwind of all things history. The U.K.’s Historical Association encourages everyone to research and share information that would promote the country’s heritage. This month-long event is not just for children, it’s also for adults. When it comes to learning and advertising historical information, everyone is encouraged to participate.

History of Local and Community History Month

Local and Community History Month is such a vital observance in the U.K. due to the country’s large landmass, rich heritage, and long history. The origin of the U.K. dates back to the 10th century when Anglo-Saxon king Athelstan secured the allegiance of the neighboring Celtic kingdoms. Subsequently, Wales became united with England under the Acts of Union of 1536 and 1542. In 1707, Scotland formally joined Wales and England to form the United Kingdom, or Great Britain. Ireland was also under English control since the 1600s and formally joined the kingdom in 1800. However, the Republic of Ireland separated and became an independent country in 1922, except for the six counties of Ulster which remained part of the U.K. and are officially called Northern Ireland.

The U.K. has made important contributions to the world in the field of industry and technology. However, since World War II broke out, the country’s most popular exports have been cultural. From theater, literature, music, and pop culture, to film and television, the global perception of arts and culture has been greatly influenced by the U.K., but its greatest contribution to the entire world is the English language, which is universally spoken for cultural and economic exchanges.

As a kingdom with four geographic parts, the country also has four different historical parts with branches of local and community history, culture, and traditions that need to be upheld, celebrated and passed on to the next generation. The Local and Community History Month aims to do just that, to celebrate the past of every corner of the British Isles.

Local and Community History Month timeline

10th Century A.D.
The First King to Rule

Anglo-Saxon King, Athelstan rules and secures the allegiance of neighboring Celtic kingdoms.

1707
Union of Scotland, England, and Wales

The Kingdom of Great Britain is formed and ruled by Queen Anne.

1801
Ireland Joins the Kingdom

Ireland joins Scotland, England, and Wales as part of the Kingdom of Great Britain, ruled by King George III.

1922
Separation of Ireland

The Republic of Ireland gains its independence.

Local and Community History Month FAQs

How old is London?

London was founded by the Romans about 2,000 years ago.

What is the oldest city in England?

The oldest city in England is Colchester which was founded in 77 A.D.

How many islands does Scotland have?

Scotland is composed of over 790 islands.

How to Observe Local and Community History Month

  1. Organize a field trip

    There’s no better way to learn than to immerse yourself with the locals. Organize a trip with your friends and family, and visit the most exciting spots across the country.

  2. Indulge in historical films

    If you’re busy at home and can’t find the time to take a trip, watching some relevant films might be for you. There are several historical movies and documentaries to choose from that feature the history of the different geographic areas in Great Britain.

  3. Try some local food

    Support local communities by purchasing their delicious food and delicacies. It’s an exciting time to try something new, whether it’s ready-made food from the local market or buying the ingredients to cook at home.

5 Interesting Facts About The U.K.

  1. The origin of the word ‘Oxford’

    Oxford comes from the old term ‘Oxanforda’ which means “a ford in the river where the cattle can cross safely.”

  2. The sheep population in Wales

    According to national statistics, there are four times more sheep in Wales than there are human beings.

  3. Northern Ireland’s Dunlop

    Dunlop, the world-renowned pneumatic tire, was invented in Northern Ireland.

  4. Scotland’s Fortingall Yew

    The Fortingall Yew, Europe’s oldest tree, was planted in Scotland between 2,000 to 3,000 years ago.

  5. The shortest war in history

    The Anglo-Zanzibar war in 1896 lasted for 45 minutes.

Why Local and Community History Month is Important

  1. It boosts local tourism

    Celebrating Local and Community History Month attracts tourists not only within the U.K. but also internationally. It helps boost the economy of local areas in the U.K., providing jobs for residents and highlighting their heritage for global attraction.

  2. We love to travel

    This month is the best time to travel across the country. Pack your bags, invite your friends, and celebrate Local and Community History Month on the road.

  3. It uncovers the rich histories

    Not many people are aware of the specific history and heritage of the U.K.'s local communities. This month allows everyone to put their stories on a pedestal and celebrate their rich past.

Local and Community History Month dates

YearDateDay
2022May 1Sunday
2023May 1Monday
2024May 1Wednesday
2025May 1Thursday
2026May 1Friday
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