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Durham County Record Office: the official archive service for County Durham and Darlington

How archives helped light up Durham for Lumiere

A world without records is a world without memory. Celebrating archives across the globe 18-26 November 2017

This year the start of Explore Your Archive week coincides with the return of Durham's fantastic light festival, Lumiere.

Planning a stunning light projection on a large historic building needs precise calculations, so when the 2015 creative team decided to use the Shire Hall building in Old Elvet for one of their Lumiere installations, they got in touch with Durham County Record Office.

Shire Hall Durham at Lumiere 2015

Shire Hall, the first home of Durham County Council, opened in July 1898, and the plans of the building are preserved in the archives in County Hall (ref CC/Arch 34-35).

Shire Hall Durham (CC/Arch 34)

Artists used the original architect's drawings of the front elevation to scale up a vivid lighting scheme which exactly matched the individual features of the building.

Imagine what the architect would have thought if he had been alive to see the 'Red House' installation in 2015!

Follow Explore Your Archive 2017 on Twitter #explorearchives 

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