Maritime memories

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Image of a ship in a bottle Rebecca's chosen item from the app - a ship in a bottle. Have you heard about our #AMemoryShared campaign? Through our House of Memories dementia awareness programme, we are using the campaign to raise awareness of sharing memories with our friends, families and those we care for, so that they are never forgotten. A person living with dementia may have trouble being in the here and now, but often they have memories tucked away at the back of their minds that, when unlocked, can lead to incredibly emotive connections and conversations.  Our Curator of Maritime Art, Rebecca Smith, has been working on a new download within our My House of Memories app that we’ve developed alongside people living with dementia: "Over the past several months, I have been selecting objects and developing content for a maritime-themed application for the My House of Memories app. I started by looking through Merseyside Maritime Museum’s collections of objects that related to the social and commercial aspects of Liverpool as a great seafaring port. The maritime history of Liverpool affected the lives of many families in the city, as a great number of the inhabitants of Liverpool would have known of someone who worked at sea. Liverpool continues to have a thriving port and the river remains bustling with a plethora of maritime activity. I contemplated my own memories and experiences of being by the sea and how objects in the Museum’s collection could prompt recollections of working at sea, living by the river and being by the seaside during annual holidays. The objects selected for the application range from cruise ship posters asking app-users to chat about their favourite holidays, to a pack of souvenir playing cards, which might start a conversation about buying souvenirs or gifts for instance. One of my favourite memories of being by the seaside was, and still remains, visiting the coastal town of Llandudno in North Wales and having a competition with my brother as to who could spot the sea first, and walking along the seemingly never-ending pier. Visiting the Albert Dock as a child, I remember the weather map on the water and also visiting Blackpool and seeing who could spot the Tower first. There are a number of objects in the maritime download that can act as prompts to unlock people’s own collections of memories of the sea, which can stimulate conversation. I have selected this ship in bottle which we have in the collection as it reminds me of my holidays and seeing boats on the water." The My House of Memories app is free and available to download through the iTunes Store or Google play, so please give it a try. The Maritime in-app purchase is new to version four of the app, and can be downloaded for just £1.49. Please share your stories and memories with us through @house_memories using the hashtag #AMemoryShared.