In 2008 and 2009 Hearing Link worked closely with the British Library and the Oral History Society to interview over 65 adults with aquired profound hearing loss (APHL) about their hearing loss diagnosis, relationships with medical professionals and the effect of hearing loss on employment, family life, education, access and awareness.
Their interviews have been archived at the British Library, and an education pack has been produced to raise awareness of APHL.Over 150,000 people in the UK live with the effects of APHL, becoming profoundly or totally deaf in adult life.
This can be either suddenly and without warning or progressively over number of weeks, months or years. For most people, APHL is a catastophic, alienating and disorientating life event. Many of these people feel that although it is them who cannot hear; their voice is also unheard.
The Unheard Voices interviews are now available as recordings and transcripts on the British Library website http://sounds.bl.uk/Oral-history/Disability-Voices
The British Library Sound Archive hosts the audio recordings and typed transcripts from the Unheard Voices project. You can find out more about the disability collections in the archive here.
My life with Menieres Disease. Gerry Leeper says 'When I was first diagnosed with Menieres disease I was still working, but I was having to come home when I wasn't well and I was scared I'd lose my job.'
There is nothing man cannot achieve. Actor and army veteran Tim Barlow says 'If you really want to do something and somebody tells you it's impossible, you find there are ways around it.'
Living with Neurofibromatosis Type 2. Sharron Pridham says 'Once people know that I am deaf and they realise I haven't been ignoring them saying 'good morning' to me, it's fine.'
Working together. Tony Rugg says 'We just celebrated our 27th anniversary; we have come through it all.'
Hearing loss through gunfire. John Hirst says 'My wider family, children and grandchildren treat me quite naturally, they all - they are all deaf aware in a unobtrusive sort of way.'
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The Unheard Voices Education Pack explores the interviews from the Unheard Voices project and is designed for use in the National Curriculum and the Curriculum for Excellence.
It is also used in training by social workers, audiologists and hearing therapists.
What Causes Hearing Loss
Attitudes to Hearing Loss
What is APHL?
Families with APHL
What is Oral History?
Hearing Loss and Employment
Technology Through Time
Many of the photographs used throughout this site were taken by British Library photographers Tony Grant and Chris McGlashon. Copyright belongs to the British Library.
Hearing Link Registered Charity Number 264809 Registered Charity Number in Scotland SC037688