A LOCAL history group is looking to the future after raising £14,000 to build and equip an archive room to preserve its collection.

Sheriff Hutton History Group was set up in 2012, although the collection of historic material has been ongoing since 2003.

Group member Meg Ashbridge said since the death of Alan Farnaby, the inspiration behind starting the archive, it had taken a number of years to start up the collection again.

“Our aims are to collect, record and preserve documents and photographs relevant to Sheriff Hutton in a purpose-built community archive room on the side of the village hall,” she said.

“We have now met our goal of raising the money to start building the archive room, and the work will begin this month.”

Meg said the group now had to raise money for shelving, a computer, scanner and more archive boxes to cope with the number of valuable documents, photographs and oral recordings of memories that are constantly being donated.

“Such a wealth of information that is around has never ceased to amaze us, so we are very happy that we started this project otherwise it would all have been lost,” she said.

“Without the support of parishioners who attended our many fundraising events, and the very generous anonymous donations we would not have got to this point so early in the project.”

Meg said the group had uncovered relationships between families dating back to 1700, and the stories of villagers long gone, but still in the memories of many of the residents.

She said: “The archive will be open to all the community. We have a brilliant archivist who has recorded all material, and it is open to everyone. We also aim to encourage the younger members of our community to get involved in the history, and the youth club and school will be using it for projects. We have also had many requests from visitors for information.”

Meg said the history group, which consisted of local people of all ages living in the surrounding area, were planning a number of fundraising events.

“We move into this year in a buoyant mood, planning a programme of events and topics for all ages to raise the final £5,000 needed for the equipment.”

Anyone who would like more information about Sheriff Hutton History Group or who has information relevant to the village, is asked to phone Meg Ashbridge on 01347 878136 or Margaret Thompson on 01347 878465.