How You Can Help Build a Second World War Air-Raid Shelter
At SOFO we tell stories of everyone affected by war in the county of Oxfordshire; from the soldier on the front line to ordinary families on the home front. Our small but dedicated team of staff and volunteers work hard to tell these stories of conflict and county in many different ways, including museum displays and learning sessions.
Our latest project aims to expand upon how our visitors can learn about conflict at the museum. Already installed at the museum is a model trench, which was built with the kind help of local Cadets back when we first opened in 2014. It's always popular, and an invaluable tool when teaching the First World War to groups of students. According to our visitors, the immersive environment has offered a new way to engage with the information in our permanent displays.
"Excellent museum with lots to see and interact with, especially like the trench mock up"
David Horne, Google Review, 2020
"The mock-up of a First World War trench was very thought evoking"
Ian B, TripAdvisor Review, 2015
We would like to build an Anderson Shelter experience which visitors can walk through and explore Second World War history in the same way do with the Great War when visiting the trench.
Anderson shelters were used in WW2 by families as a place to hide when the air raid siren sounded, warning of a potential bomb attack. Photographs of the inside of Anderson shelters at the time show homely touches of cushions and photographs, as well as supplies such as food and entertainment in case families were confined inside for a long time.
Any support you can give will help us purchase the materials to create an Anderson shelter structure and collect some replica WW2 handling materials to furnish it. Think bunk beds, games, blankets and even a chamber pot!
The Anderson shelter experience will become a vital part of our WW2 education sessions which teach about the changes to life at home during wartime, and regular visitors will be able to enjoy it whenever the museum is open. We will also use the handling materials in our reminiscence work which helps participants explore their memories of the past in a safe and welcoming environment.
As a thank you, by helping fund our latest immersive project you could access a range of great rewards, from badges and souvenir guidebooks, to annual passes and even getting your name featured on a plaque in the Anderson shelter display itself.
Any support you can offer is very gratefully received!
The SOFO Museum Team