We go back in time to visit the ‘Old Forge’ Wartime House in Sittingbourne
A hugely successful experiment in recreating the daily grind of life on the Home Front circa 1943, situated in a typical middle class family home and complimented by a veteran cast of professional re-enactors who bring the whole experience vividly to life.
From the moment you walk through the back door in the costume shop, just like something straight out of Mr Benn, you are instantly transported back in time into the office of an ARP warden who greets you with a smile before engaging in a conversation about last night’s activities.
Subsequently you then have chance to explore a dining room, living room, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen and best of all a genuine in-situ anderson shelter in the back garden.
You are able to enjoy the whole experience at your own leisure, freely moving throughout the property meeting different characters as you progress, each of whom is thoroughly knowledgeable and entertaining. Certainly a lot of thought, time and effort have been invested here and it shows.
In fact the experience has taken some 18 months to reach fruition with the help of a team of enthusiastic members from the Sittingbourne Living History Group and members of the public. The house is filled with original fittings, furniture and artefacts and you are able to learn how to ‘Make do and Mend’, find out how to make your rations go further and even help out ‘Dig for Victory’ garden.
The attention to detail is fantastic, you are actively encouraged to take seat in the living room and warm your feet by the fire and take part in family life. But eventually just like Mr Benn you remerge back in the costume shop and back to 2014.
For those interested in visiting yourself, the ‘Old Forge’ Wartime House will be available to visit on the first Saturday of every month between 10Am – 5PM. They also cater for school parties where the children get to experience what it would have been like to be shipped by train to escape the bombings of the city’s.
The ‘Old Forge’ Wartime House
back of Character Costumes
28 East Street, Sittingbourne,
Kent ME10 4RT
Tel: 01795 479 252