Travelling through time

Travelling through time

Northern Membership & Community Council along with the Ripley Town Council and the Ripley Heritage Trust launched a virtual trail. The Heritage Trail captures stories and memories of people from the area. The launch was held at the Ripley Co-op on Derby Road (15th February, 2024) where students, members and friends were invited to take part in this special day. The Mayor of Ripley, Councillor Paul Lobley, Consort Janette Lobley and Richard Bickle, Vice-President, Central Co-op, marked the launch with the cutting of a ribbon with students from St. John School and Ripley Academy.

The trail captures the rich co-operative history including the opening of the Ripley Zoo, the origins of Ripley Co-op from the first shop on Butterley Hill in 1860 to the horse-drawn milk floats to wartime. The virtual trail was a build from the Ripley Heritage Trust trail which already existed and we enjoyed working with Andy Myers Design, to make it virtual to enable new generations to listen to stories. By walking through the town and finding signs on lampposts and listening to stories via QR codes. (Thanks to the Derbyshire Council Council and Amber Valley Council for allowing the signs to be placed on the lampposts). The trail leaflets are available from the Co-op, Ripley Town Council or the Library. If anyone is not able to walk the trail the links enable you to listen to the stories from the comfort of your armchair or back at the cafe. Students can also take the trial to their grandparents to listen together and reminisce about their earlier days.

We started with some great entertainment from Jorge a local singer from Ripley and talks from members including Marlene, Phil and Terry. All three having long careers or history with the Co-op, students from St. John School asked a number of questions and thoroughly enjoyed taking part. Also, students from Ripley Academy helped us on the day along with the MCC members. At the end of the launch everyone was treated to sandwiches and chips prepared by our colleagues in the cafe.

Upon completion of the trail, the answer to the Heritage Walk Word Game can be taken back to the Co-op to collect a colouring sheet of the hidden word and also a free instant tea/coffee juice.

The day was a really great way to interact with a number of generations and share experiences and have a greater understanding of the Co-op, not just in Ripley but around the world.

Blog written by Tanya Noon, MCRO.