Copper Day was an unexpected development of the ESRC Global and Local Worlds of Welsh Copper Project that I am currently working on at Swansea University. In addition to the summer exhibition, the development of web-accessible resources on copper history, digitisation and liaison with project partners and other bodies, Copper Day has emerged as probably what most people will remember the project for. It was initially an idea raised to respond to what some thought of as a rather elitist event held last October at the National Waterfront Museum on History, Heritage and Urban Regeneration. This was organised jointly by the project and the Institute of Welsh Affairs. That day had a specific aim in mind and that was to raise the issues surrounding heritage-led regeneration, what this has meant for other areas of Britain such as Cornwall and New Lanark in Scotland, and what this could mean in the future for Swansea. However, there was still a need to address how to satisfy a growing thirst for information on Swansea’s global copper heritage. What began as an idea for a ‘free people’s meeting to discuss things’ has ended up as, thanks to the willing and voluntary contributions and efforts of several individuals and organisations, a city-wide free festival of all things copper. On Saturday 5 March, (parts of) Swansea will once again (metaphorically) hear the clatter of the copperworks and (with no threat to health) smell the smog that choked the valley that was at the centre of a world industry for almost two centuries. From the Big Screen in Castle Square to the Richard Burton Archives at Swansea University, we hope there will be something for everyone.
Read more about why we thought Copper Day was important.
Read more about Swansea Copper Day and find out what’s going on