10th November 2023

An Update from NPHT

The year is flying by and I can’t believe we are already planning our virtual online Christmas Calendar, which will celebrate our work over the past 12 months in each window. Look out for the link in December!
Since the August newsletter it has been full steam ahead with project delivery, school and university tours, Scout and Beavers visits, outreach to special education needs schools and partner museums to name a few. We also had a presence at the World Para Swimming Games in Manchester with the pop-up museum being well received. On the back of this we've had several other requests including supporting the World Abilitysport conference with a short history film and there are plans to work with the Manchester 2023 World Taekwondo Grand Prix Final this December.

One of the most important pieces of news is that the International Paralympic Committee has announced that host nations of the Paralympic Games will have to use Stoke Mandeville to launch the torch relays, just as the Olympic Games use Mount Olympus. Since 2013 this has not been part of the official agreement of hosting the Games. This is a real step forward in equality between the Games and is very welcome. The Trust looks forward to supporting these events in the future.

Aylesbury Scouts visiting the National Paralympic Heritage Centre.

A Spotlight On ... Our Funders

As we reflect on our 6-year journey we put the spotlight on our supporters and funders who have made it possible to realise our ambitious plans and vision.
The National Lottery Heritage fund has supported us at the beginning of our journey in 2017 until 2023. We have recently submitted all the reports to complete this phase of work and we are delighted to announce that NLHF will continue to fund our work as we enter a new phase of delivery. You can read the evaluation report here.
We also welcome on board new funders who are making the delivery of our 'Becoming Seamlessly Inclusive' vision possible. Thank you to Arts Council England, ArtFund, Coventry University, Heart of Bucks, Holloway University, Kop Hill Climb, Mitsubishi Corporation (London Branch), National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Rothschild Foundation for all their support. Find out about our Becoming Seamlessly Inclusive project here.

What's On...

Come along and join us at the following events:

Friday 24th November 10:00-12:00, fun board games and activities at the Heritage Centre.

Friday 8th December, Meet Paralympic high jumper Jonathan Broom-Edwards. Join us in listening to Jonathan's journey to Paralympic gold medallist.

Tuesday 16th January, DICE Club Business Breakfast 7:30-9:30am at Stoke Mandeville Stadium. Guest speaker to be announced shortly.

Over the Summer, Buckinghamshire Libraries kindly hosted our touring handling collection and banners celebrating 75 years of the Paralympic Games. We look forward to partnering with them again as we highlight Stoke Mandeville’s key role in the Paralympic Movement ahead of the Paris Games in August 2024.

Paralympic high jumper Jonathan Broom-Edwards. © imagecomms for ParaGB.

Sign up to our latest Meet the Paralympian event here.

Recognition for Digital Innovation

On Thursday 21st September we attended the prestigious Buckinghamshire Business Awards as one of the top three finalists. We were thrilled to be announced as the winners of their 2023 Digital Innovation Award, celebrating excellence in business innovation and community impact.
This award recognises our groundbreaking 'Digital Explorations' project, which was generously funded by the Rothschild Foundation, National Lottery Heritage Fund, and supported by the Heart of Bucks. This dynamic undertaking facilitated our collaboration with 25 disabled individuals from across Buckinghamshire to meticulously capture over 60 museum artefacts that were previously uncatalogued and too delicate to handle. The project involved cutting-edge 3D scanning and photogrammetry technologies.
We will continue to build on this ground-breaking work through our 'Becoming Seamlessly Inclusive' programme with National Portfolio Organisation recognition funded by Arts Council England, the Rothschild Foundation and Heart of Bucks. Pushing digital boundaries using 3D scanning and photogrammetry and broadening heritage accessibility expertise, helping others to develop theirs.

The Digital Explorations project team at the Buckinghamshire Business First Awards.

Collections news

Changing our displays

Working with our museum trainees and partners at Discover Bucks Museum we've replaced two of the iconic objects that have been on display since the Heritage Centre opened in March 2019. They are the London 2012 athletes jacket and the cloak worn by Sir Ian McKellen at the Opening Ceremony, these objects have been viewed by over 58,000 visitors. We invited our supporters to vote on the new objects to be put on display, the winners are the plastic union jack dress and the orange collarless jacket, both costumes from the London 2012 Paralympics Opening Ceremony.

On Saturday 30th September as part of Sporting Heritage Open Day visitors had the unique opportunity to see Sir Ian McKellen's cloak close up and out of the display before it was boxed up to be taken away for restoration and conservation. Come along and see the new objects on display.

Box of slides and ipad with close up of slides on a table.


In 2023 we have so far received 22 individual donations with multiple items. These have come from local organisations, athletes' personal collections, family archives and overseas visitors. 
We've loaned some objects from our handling collection to Peterborough museum for an exhibition, and the Migration museum have some personal items of Dr Guttmann’s in their touring exhibition celebrating the contribution of refugees to the National Health Service.
We have been delighted to receive a Sporting Heritage Microform Grant. This funding is enabling us to scan and digitise film slides in our collection making them accessible to view. We look forward to delving into a recent donation from Diane West and her father's, Alan West, collection of film slides from the 50, 60's and 70's.

Keep a look out here for progress on this project!

Supporting us in 2024

As 2023 draws to an end we are looking ahead to 2024 and the exciting opportunities to share our heritage in a Paralympic year. Here's how you can get involved.
Become our next Paralympian for our meet the Paralympian series. In 2023, our Meet the Paralympian sessions have been attended by over 2,000 children and adults. Join us on this journey to educate and inspire the next generation.
Book your Company Awareness Away Day with us we are ready to inspire your team and challenge their understanding of disability, whilst exploring the history of the Paralympic Movement. Find out more here!
Book your school or community visit our learning team are ready to visit your school for an assembly or welcome you to Stoke Mandeville, the home of the Paralympic Movement.
Donate your time by joining our volunteer community or financially, however big or small.

Staff from the British Paralympic Association on their Company Awareness Away Day.

Thank you

Thank you to our dedicated team of volunteers, they've had a busy summer attending various events with the pop-up, welcoming groups to the Heritage Centre and facilitating assemblies.

Thank you to Mark Ormerod, Jackie Nash, Nick Webborn, Morisawa and Diane West for their recent donations to the NPHT collections.

Thank you to all who follow what we are doing and to those who have generously donated.

Support our ongoing work by donating here.