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Portraits from the Past Inspire Nursery Children


Children at The Nursery in Belong, which is located within the state-of-the-art Belong care village in Chester and run by national charity Ready Generations, have been exercising their creative skills while discovering what it was like to grow up in a previous generation during intergenerational sessions combining art and history as part of a partnership with the city’s Grosvenor Museum.

Inspired by resources from the Grosvenor Museum, including portraits of famous Chester sons and daughters from the Victorian age, residents of the care village and nursery children took it in turns to paint and draw self-portraits on consecutive days. The following day, they shared their artworks and were challenged to match sitters with their likenesses.

Older participants spoke about their childhoods and what the city was like in times gone by, with the children having chance to ask them questions, and costumes helped children and adults to step back in time and imagine themselves as a person living in a previous era.

The portraits will be included in an exhibition entitled ‘See me, Hear me, Know me’ at the Grosvenor Museum in January next year, part of a partnership between Ready Generations and the museum to develop The Nursery in Belong’s Mirrored Curriculum framework, which is at the forefront of the care village’s intergenerational strategy.

Commenting on the new initiative, Nursery Manager, Ruth Sandbach, said: “We’re delighted to see children and adults benefitting from intergenerational connections following the opening of The Nursery in Belong earlier this year. The children learned new words and developed creativity and confidence interacting with others. Adults also got to put their communication skills to the test and could feel that they genuinely contributed to the children’s education and getting to understand themselves and the world around them. Both enjoyed building relationships and being part of a community.

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