A SERIES of films giving voice to Scotland’s former coalmining communities will next week be screened at a special event in Edinburgh.

Taking place at the capital’s Scottish Storytelling Centre, the evening will include three films from Auckinleck, Kelty and Whitburn, produced as part of the Films in Action series as a collaboration between Coalfields Regeneration Trust, Regional Screen Scotland, Folk Film Gathering and Screen Scotland.

The project highlights the inequalities which continue to affect the nation’s former coalmining communities and how they have been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic, while also demonstrating the creativity, adaptability and resilience of their residents in supporting the most vulnerable amongst them.

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For the past two years, filmmakers Anne Milne and Shona Thomson have been documenting stories of lockdown through 15 films made by eleven community groups throughout Scotland. The three featured films will be introduced by some of the individuals who made and took part in them.

Thomson commented: “Giving voice to the coalfield communities has always been at the heart of the Films of Action project. My filmmaking colleague Anne Milne and I feel honoured to have witnessed people telling their stories through filmmaking. Bringing the films to the big screen in Edinburgh on 29 June shows the power of coming together to listen, share and discuss what’s important to focus resources and energy on right now in our communities.”

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Nicky Wilson of Coalfields Regeneration Trust added: “These films are a real testament to the resilience and resourcefulness of Scottish coalfield communities, even in the face of lockdown. As well as celebrating this community spirit, the film screenings will provide a great opportunity for a dialogue around how to help former coalmining communities to thrive in the future.” 

Tickets for Films of Action: Coalfield Communities in Lockdown can be purchased on the Scottish Storytelling Centre website. Audiences are asked to wear facemasks unless exempt.