Where archive footage met digital storytelling
Rhondda Lives! was a digital storytelling project run by Valleys Kids from 2007–2009. It was set up to explore what stories a community would tell if archive footage of its area was shown there once again.
At 1-3 minutes long, a digital story is not a life story or flight of fancy, it expresses the events and emotions of a little fragment of personal experience using the storyteller’s own words and voice.
The digital stories made as a result of Rhondda Lives! are unique in using archive footage from BBC Wales and the National Screen and Sound Archive of Wales for much of the imagery.
Many themes crop up again and again in the stories: affection and respect for family members; hardship in many forms; the value of education and deep, deep fondness for the Rhondda and the close and friendly community who live there.
The stories were loaded onto a touch-screen kiosk that toured the valley and spent a month in the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff, enabling many people to see the films. It was powered by exciting Storybank software developed by Swansea University and at then end of the project was placed in the Rhondda Heritage Centre.