National Lottery Open Week: The impact of ICE Heritage

ICE Heritage is a two-year long partnership programme between Hampshire Cultural Trust (HCT) and the Hampshire Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), following on from The ICE Project (2017-2020) and is funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust.

The project aims to:

  • address and explore the role of creative engagement in a heritage setting improving young people’s mental health and wellbeing and explore themes such as identity and self-care
  • provide progression pathways through INSPIRE and CREATE sessions with local artists for young people who are known to, on a waiting list, receiving treatment or recently discharged from mental health services
  • create exhibitions to share with the local community and establish independent journeys to improved longer-term wellbeing

Intended outcomes include:

  • gaining transferable creative and heritage skills
  • improving confidence and self-esteem
  • increasing resilience and self-compassion
  • heightening self-awareness
  • enhancing self-worth

A number of our museums, including Westbury Manor Museum in Fareham, Andover Museum and Aldershot Military Museum, are hosting creative work with young people with activity including music and lyric writing, leather making and craft as well as photography.

When asked about taking part in arts activities:

  • 91% said it helped them to concentrate and focus, compared to 73% when asked at the start of the programme
  • 82% said it helped them to have fun and relax, compared to 67% when asked at the start of the programme
  • And 73% said that it helped them to improve confidence and self-esteem, compared to 47% when asked at the start of the programme
  • 50% also said that they learnt something new about heritage and another 10% now understands what heritage means to them
“When I sing my mental health goes away with all my problems and it’s replaced with what I can be instead of what I can’t” -Young person, music and lyric writing
“The social aspect of being part of a group was very important to me as due to my health I struggle to get out of the house and socialise with people”  -Young person, music and lyric writing
Photography exhibition created by ICE Heritage young people.
“I was quite worried, because there's a lot of people that you will be meeting and the skills I'd have to learn. And that's not always the easiest thing to do. I was worried that they weren't gonna be, like, as friendly as they were. I think that's what made me really comfortable. I'd never actually been to Aldershot before that point. But I think actually being in the museum was really a better thing because we had a lot more to photograph. I think it might have felt less comfortable [in a different venue] as we have our own little area. There were times where we actually opened up the vehicles and kind of like stuck our cameras in and got some very good shots. I was a bit worried I might be stupid in there, but no one was like that. I was just curious about trying something new, so it gave me the opportunity to let myself be creative ... I feel a lot more confident with my creativity [and] I was really happy that people actually wanted to come and see what we were doing.” - Young person, photography
“ We saw changes in confidence in joining the group each session...changes that were linked to seeing their own work develop, moment of happiness, excitement and satisfaction breaking through feelings of anxiety and being withdrawn” - Aldershot Military Museum Project Team

Click here for more information on ICE Heritage.

ICE Heritage | Hampshire Cultural Trust
The ICE Heritage Project is currently open for referrals for young people to join our final programmes in Summer 2023. Find out how to register for a referral below.

To celebrate this amazing programme, we are offering a free activity in Aldershot Military Museum’s café and also offering free entry to children and young people aged 5 to 15 years, over the weekend of the 25 and 26 March. You can find more details here.

ICE Heritage: our worlds | Hampshire Cultural Trust
Young people’s photographs inspired by Aldershot Military Museum.

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