Stained-glass window of John Bunyan in Bedford Gaol, Bunyan Meeting, Bedford With kind permission from Trustees of Bunyan Meeting

Do you have any memories of working at the brickworks?

The Journey from Bunyan to the Brickworks explores the journeys of pride, inspiration and hope made by Bunyan who was imprisoned and persecuted for his beliefs, alongside the difficult journeys made by those who came to Bedford after the Second World War to work at The London Brick Company.

Do you have any memories of working at the brickworks? Or do you know of anyone who worked at the brickworks? The Higgins Bedford invites you to share your Brickworks memories at Pride, Inspiration, Hope: Bedfordshire Brickworks Day on Saturday 25th May. The museum will be sharing photographs, memories, stories and songs associated with the brickworks.

John Bunyan remained steadfast to his beliefs in spite of persecution and imprisonment. Many have been inspired by his most famous published work, The Pilgrim’s Progress. This charts the story from despair to hope through faith.

This story is mirrored in the stories of those that travelled to Bedford in the wake of the Second World War to work at the brickworks. Many fled poverty, mass unemployment and persecution before coming to Bedford. Working conditions at the brickworks were challenging, but many made new lives in Bedford.

Bedfordshire Brickworks Day on the 25th May 2019

A large ‘stained-glass’ effect window, in the style of the stunning windows in the Bunyan Meeting church forms the centre-piece of the exhibition. Films, recordings and objects collected from the community help to explore the stories of individuals that worked at the brickworks.

Bedfordshire Brickworks Day will include talks, activities and an interactive discussion panel where brickworks memories will be contributed to The Higgins’ Wall of Inspiration. There will also be folk music with local musicians in partnership with Invisible Folk.

Karen Fryc, of The Bedford Chronicles, who helped to develop the exhibition said:

“I am delighted that we have been able to bring this project to life, as the huge impact and lasting legacy which the brickyards created changed the landscape of Bedford forever. Our town has much to celebrate today because of the journeys made here 65 years ago.”

The exhibition is the result of a collaborative Heritage Lottery funded project between John Bunyan Museum and the Bedford Chronicles. Opens on the 6th April 2019. Free entry.