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Learning at Black Country Living Museum

Hidden Histories - Hush Now

Herefordshire based theatre company Feral Productions presents Hush Now, a digital theatre production filmed here at the Museum, which is now available to watch on our YouTube channel

View the trailer here:

Adapted for the stage and screen from Feral’s original site-specific production, Hush Now is a piece of digital theatre giving voice and visibility to unmarried mothers who were stigmatised, silenced and hidden away in Mother and Baby homes.

For 100 years, women across the world who found themselves pregnant, often through abuse, were sent away, effectively hidden and rehoused in a Mother and Baby Home.

To give voices to these 'unheard' women, Feral Productions collaborated with Ledbury poet Sara-Jane Arbury who turned archival research into verse. Her verses were then turned into theatrical songs by Olivia Preye and performed in Hereford in 2019 in a series of promenade performances across nine different locations.

Hush Now is one of the most interesting and profoundly moving projects I have ever done.” says writer Sara-Jane Arbury, “The hidden history of Mother and Baby Homes in Herefordshire has been a revelation. I feel a tremendous responsibility in bringing some of the stories to light and giving these women and girls voices for us to hear today. The whole process has inspired me in so many ways and I hope the poems will stay in people’s thoughts for a long time to come.”

Hush Now comprises nine songs, each lifting the lid on the adversities faced by so many unmarried mothers and celebrating their resilience and tenacity during such traumatic experiences.

(Accessibility content written by Cara Tivey & Charlotte Milburn)

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Did you know?

interesting fact image

In the Black Country a chamber pot is also called a ‘Guzz’under’ because it ‘goes under the bed’!

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