Help Archives+ Centre chart life during lockdown in Manchester

Help Archives+ Centre chart life during lockdown in Manchester

Manchester’s Archives+ Centre wants to capture the experience of living through the coronavirus pandemic for future generations – and needs your help.

Archives+, the city’s showcase and repository for archives and family history, is inviting all Mancunians to share their writing, drawings, photos, audio and video files, which could form part of future exhibitions about life during the COVID-19 lockdown.  

All submissions from Manchester residents, no matter how big or small, are welcome.  

Situated at Manchester Central Library, Archives+ is a purpose-built home for local, regional and national collections of documents, photographs and films, providing the public with access to their local history and heritage.

Some people may have already written down or recorded their thoughts, or expressed them through creating artwork – but if you are keen to capture your feelings about the times we’re living through and are not sure where to start, the following prompts might help:-

If you have had the virus, how did it affect you?
How has the virus impacted on your work?
How has the virus impacted on your home life?
What are you doing to keep busy?
Have you got to know your neighbours better?
How has the virus affected your view of the future?
What are your feelings on how Manchester has responded to the virus?

Please make sure that anything you submit is your own work.  If you would prefer your submission to be used anonymously in a future exhibition, please let the team know – but do include your name, location and contact details, so that they can contact you for further information if needed.  

Submissions of documents, photographs or short sound files (aim for around one minute in length) can be made digitally by emailing  If you are submitting a photograph, please include details of when and where it was taken and why you took it.  

For submissions which are on paper, or in another physical form, please keep them safely at home until your local Manchester library reopens, when you will be able to submit it in person.  

The Ahmed Iqbal Ullah Race Relations Resource Centre & Education Trust, based at Central Library, is also calling for submissions, as part of their mission to ensure that historical accounts from black and ethnic minority communities are equally represented in the story of how the coronavirus has affected Greater Manchester. 

If you wish to submit a short video file, contact the North West Film Archive, which is based at Archives+, by visiting  
Executive Member for Skills, Culture and Leisure, Councillor Luthfur Rahman, said: “Future generations of Mancunians will look back on these times and wonder what it was like to actually live through them.  That’s why we’re keen to capture some of your everyday feelings about life under lockdown and your thoughts on the city’s incredible response to the pandemic.

“The Archives+ Centre is an amazing place and our staff have the skills and expertise needed to sensitively create exhibitions to tell Manchester’s stories.  So if you’re inspired to write down, film or record your experience, or create your own artwork to express your feelings during these difficult times, our team would love to hear from you.  

“Remember, there is no right or wrong way to do this, because your experience is truly unique.”

For more information about Archives+, go to

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