Grants awarded October 2020
The Keep Military Museum
‘We at The Keep Military Museum are incredibly excited to have been awarded an Archives Revealed scoping grant. Our archive is an extensive and remarkable collection of around 50,000 diaries, papers, maps and photographs relating to our regiments and their role and impact locally, nationally and internationally over more than 300 years. This grant will open up more opportunities for us to plan for and to ensure the future preservation of this significant resource. It will also help us gain better insight into the material we hold and therefore be able to engage a wider audience with, what we feel, is a unique and very much under-used collection.’
Muslim Council of Britain
The Muslim Council of Britain’s archival collection has been gradually organised over several years by volunteers committed to preserving community histories and, with this scoping grant, this foundation can now be built upon and professionalised. The archives provide a valuable insight into the history of the organisation and its members, representing a broad cross-section of British Muslim communities across the UK, and we look forward to making it publicly available for the benefit of researchers in the fields of religion and faith in Britain and related areas. Through this project, we also hope to provide increased awareness and appreciation within British Muslim communities of the importance of preserving heritage and history in order to positively contribute towards the growing and rich tapestry of archival collections across Britain’s diverse faith communities.’
The Town and Country Planning Association
The Town and Country Planning Association (TCPA) was founded in 1899 as the Garden City Association by Sir Ebenezer Howard, an English urban planner and founder of the Garden City movement. This movement focused on improving the conditions in which most people live, work and play through the creation of new, sustainable places. Today, the association is an independent charity that continues to put social justice and the environment at the heart of place-making. Due to this rich history, as well as the association’s many achievements, the issues that are covered by the TCPA’s archive continue to be of relevance in policy and practice.
‘We are delighted to receive this grant, which will support us to make important progress towards securing the protection of our archives. The challenge of delivering the homes and communities that people need is more topical than ever and making our archives more accessible will ensure we can learn from the past to inform how we best tackle current challenges.’ – Fiona Howie, Chief Executive of the TCPA
The Horse Hospital
The Horse Hospital is a grade II listed not-for-profit arts organisation with a focus on counter-cultural histories, subcultures, outsider as well as emerging art. Since its foundation in 1993, it has been committed to championing underrepresented practices and amplifying artist-led and DIY culture through its open-door policy towards collaborators irrespective of their socio-economic, cultural or artistic backgrounds. The Horse Hospital was awarded an Asset of Community Value (ACV) by Camden Council in both 2014 and 2019.
‘We are incredibly grateful to have been awarded an Archives Revealed scoping grant as this brings us a step closer to ensuring that The Horse Hospital’s legacy of more than 27 years of ‘writing histories from below’ can reach and inspire many generations to come. At a time when the survival of self-organised, artist-led cultures is being undermined by profit-driven imperatives, it is particularly important for our community to see the historical value of our work being recognised and supported.’ – Letitia Calin, Co-Director, The Horse Hospital
Grants awarded July 2020
Nottingham Women’s History Group
This scoping grant will ensure that the Nottingham Feminist Archive Collections will not only be accessible to all, but that they are also preserved for the future. It will enable the group to assess the collections’ importance and relevance. The report will guide future development work and ascertain the costs of cataloguing, conservation and digitisation required to open the collections up to researchers.
‘Without a scoping grant this unique collection of material and memorabilia relating to the UK Women’s Liberation Movement will be lost to the next generation of feminists’ – Val Wood, Member of the Women’s History Group Committee and Researcher
Michael Clark Company
Michael Clark Company has been awarded a scoping grant to address the questions of expertise, time and financial resources needed to properly catalogue its archive. Michael Clark’s pioneering work has stretched the boundaries of dance, placing it right at the heart of the contemporary arts of today. The organisation’s ultimate aspiration is to give greater access to the archive through loans, physical research opportunities and online content, so that Clark’s work can continue to inspire current and future generations.
Aberlour Child Care Trust
Aberlour Child Care Trust has provided support services to children, young people and their families in some form since 1875. Originating as Aberlour Orphanage in the Speyside village of the same name, it has become one of the largest children’s charities in Scotland. Aberlour’s archive includes records of the management of the orphanage as well as admissions and medical records, case notes, photography and correspondence from former residents and staff.
These records are important not only to individuals with a personal connection to the organisation but also for their potential to contribute to our collective understanding of social and social work history. The scoping grant will be used to conduct a review of the 172 boxes of historical archives held in offsite storage. This is an important step towards a larger piece of work to catalogue the collection fully and make it accessible, where appropriate, as an online resource.
‘I am delighted that Aberlour has been awarded this scoping grant as it’s the first step towards maximising the potential of our archive and making it more accessible to all’ – SallyAnn Kelly, CEO of Aberlour Child Care Trust
Goldsmith, University of London, in partnership with Lewisham Council
The Young Mayor of Lewisham archive is owned by the London Borough of Lewisham and Goldsmiths, University of London, and dates from the 1990s when the first youth democracy programmes were being developed by the borough. Goldsmiths and Lewisham Council believe making this collection available digitally and in person as a resource for the borough will:
- give voice, recognition and space to the histories that have shaped Lewisham
- inspire young people through critical and civic engagement with the past to realise their potential to bring about change and play an active role in their collective future
- enable alumni to share their experiences of the programme and its effect on their lives in order to inspire and encourage today’s young people in these uncertain times
- generate new research and knowledge exchange about Lewisham’s youth and community histories
‘For us, this grant represents a critical first step in our journey towards making the Young Mayor of Lewisham archive an accessible and living resource for everyone, especially local communities in Lewisham.’ – Dr Kalbir Shukra, Head of Community Studies at Goldsmiths, University College London.
Grants awarded December 2019
Doncaster Deaf Trust
Doncaster Deaf Trust started as a school for the deaf in 1829 and now includes a nursery, school, college and children’s care home on a 24 acre secure campus on the outskirts of Doncaster. It is Yorkshire’s oldest deaf school and the third oldest in the UK. The Trust archive includes a comprehensive record of the Deaf school from its foundation to the current day and is housed on site at the school. The Trust will be using the scoping grant to develop a better understanding of the content of the archive and plan how to make it more accessible. The grant will also be used to explore ways of creating a permanent exhibition of archive material that will be available to the public and researchers wishing to engage with the collection and improve understanding of what it was like, and is like, to be deaf.
‘This scoping grant is the real starting point on our journey to making the archive accessible to all.’ – Alexis Johnson, Executive Principal of the Doncaster Deaf Trust
Govanhill Baths Community Trust
Govanhill Baths Community Trust (GBCT) grew out of a vibrant and historic community campaign to save the baths from closure in 2001. The building is currently going through a major capital refurbishment to become a modern wellbeing centre due to open in 2021. The Govanhill Baths Archive is an important element of the programming at GBCT and the scoping grant will be used to provide an overview of the collection, assess its significance, highlight conservation needs and explore the potential for exhibitions, access and engagement.
‘The archive is a fascinating and truly unique collection which reflects the wide and varied activities which have taken place in the Baths from its use as a Municipal Baths and Wash-House, to its occupation by the Save Our Pool campaign and the development of the GBCT.’ – Frances Diver, Director and Secretary of the GBCT
Scouting is a national movement formed in 1907 by Lord Baden-Powell, and open to young people aged 6-25 and to adult leaders. Scouts Scotland actively engages and supports young people in their personal development, empowering them to make a positive contribution to society. Scouts Scotland holds archive material of great significance to the history of Scouting and will be using its scoping grant to plan the long term care of this important collection and improve engagement with it.
‘Scouts Scotland are hugely proud of our history and heritage. The scoping grant will help us move forward with our plans to organise our collection of archives so that we can eventually share them with others and use them as a vehicle to engage our young members and the wider community.’ – Katie Docherty, Chief Executive of Scouts Scotland
International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works (IIC)
The IIC, founded in 1950, is an independent professional society that believes conservation is of great value. The institute brings together conservation professionals from around the world, educating, enabling, and recognising excellence. The archive of the IIC dates from the 1940s and includes correspondence, photographs, recordings, publications and other documentation. These records represent the work of the organisation from the Monuments Men involved in its foundation to the present day. The IIC will use its scoping grant to plan how to secure and make the archive collection accessible to wider audiences.
‘Our ambition is to make this collection accessible to others, to promote the advancement of knowledge and to engage people with the history of the IIC, whilst preserving this important material. The scoping grant will enable us to strategically plan how to approach the management of the collection and ensure we can achieve our ambitions for improved engagement and access.’ – Sarah Stannage, Executive Director of the IIC
Grants awarded September 2019
Harvey’s Foundry Trust
Harvey’s Foundry Trust was originally established as Hayle Town Trust in the mid-1980s. Its central aim is to preserve buildings belonging to Harvey and Co’s world famous Foundry (which closed in 1903) and documents and objects pertaining to the wider heritage of Hayle. The Trust oversees two venues which tell the story in different ways – Hayle Heritage Centre and Hayle Archive. The latter is a longstanding community asset, established in the 1980s. It contains thousands of items, from photographs and historic newspapers to industrial, social and ecclesiastical records, objects and other ephemera. This grassroots collection gives a unique insight into the history of Hayle and wider West Cornwall. With help from a scoping grant, Hayle Archive will be able to fully survey its collection, gain insight into cataloguing and conservation needs and improve public access (both physical and online).
‘The award of an Archives Revealed Scoping Grant to Hayle Archive represents a big step forward for Harvey’s Foundry Trust, enabling us to gain real insight into our collection. This community archive has been created and cared for over several decades by local people, for everyone interested in the history of Hayle and wider West Cornwall. The grant will open up further opportunities, helping us to understand what we have and how to conserve it, and how to engage more people with the collection and our work.’ – Brian Capper, Chair of Harvey’s Foundry Trust
The Royal Life Saving Society
The Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) is the oldest and largest drowning prevention and water safety organisation in the Commonwealth. The Society was founded in London in 1891 by William Henry and a group of influential individuals seeking to reduce drowning in the Thames. The collection contains information and research about the development of drowning prevention, lifesaving and lifesaving sport techniques, as well as the formation and development of not only the RLSS but also other drowning prevention organisations in the world. There are also details relating to activities in the Second World War and the training of Civil Defence workers in resuscitation. The collection reflects the birth of lifesaving organisations and describes how new methods and techniques were spread around the world by key volunteers. It also shows the correlation between developments in RLSS reflecting social change and the advancement of medical knowledge.
‘We value our archive and the part it plays in our heritage. We want to ensure it is preserved and made more widely available and so we are delighted to have been successful in our application to the Archives Revealed Scoping Grant Scheme.’ – Clive Holland, Deputy Commonwealth President of the Royal Life Saving Society
The New Vic Theatre
The New Vic is one of the country’s most successful producing theatres and a key part of the cultural life of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. Recent successes include an international tour of their hugely popular Around The World In 80 Days, including a Broadway run, and the UK Theatre award-winning adaptation of The Snow Queen. Our visionary and award-winning community programmes are among the most successful in the country, engaging with thousands of participants through our Education Department and the ground-breaking New Vic Borderlines, which works to change the lives of the most disadvantaged members of the community. The Victoria Theatre Archive is a collection which dates back to the inception of the Victoria Theatre in 1962.
Inspired by the work of Stephen Joseph, visionary pioneer of theatre-in-the-round and led by the late director Peter Cheeseman CBE, the theatre developed a reputation for creating documentary dramas about topical local subjects. Early works included The Knotty, about the North Staffordshire Railway, Fight for Shelton Bar, about the closure of a local steelworks, and The Jolly Potters, about the struggle for workers’ rights in the pottery industry. The theatre moved from its site in Hartshill in 1986, when local people fundraised to build a new theatre for the community – and the New Vic became the first theatre-in-the-round in Europe.
‘This Archives Revealed Scoping Grant will help us to safeguard materials about the history of our building, people, art and local issues, and help to make the collection more readily available and accessible to those interested in our history.’ – Fiona Wallace, Managing Director of The New Vic Theatre
EMI Archive Trust
The EMI Archive Trust was set up in 1996 to preserve the history of recorded music, dating from 1897 until, primarily but not exclusively, pre-1947. The collection encompasses an extraordinary journey through music, technology and British history starting with EMI’s precursor, the first major European record label, the Gramophone Company. EMI Archive Trust has charitable status in the UK and was set up to protect valuable museum standard assets and historic recordings from being sold and to stop the collection ever being broken up.
The British Library understandably calls the EMI Archive Trust one of the world’s largest and most diverse music and technology archives, while Geoff Marsh, Head Curator of The Victoria and Albert Museum says of the EMI collection: ‘As the world’s largest museum of art, design and performance, with a permanent holding of over 2.2 million objects, there are few collections in the UK which put us in the shade. One of them, in terms of music, is the extraordinary archive of EMI. Not only is it a crucial collection of classical and modern music but it documents a key part of the UK’s manufacturing, design and creative history.’ The EMI Archive Trust’s strategic focus is now on public benefit via education, research, exhibitions, publishing, broadcast activities and heritage protection. A scoping grant will allow the Trustees to prioritise areas of the collection to develop as key elements of this strategy.
‘Receiving this scoping grant award will help us steer our priorities as we implement our strategy over the next five years. The Trustees and I are enormously grateful to The National Archives and their team, who are all uniquely generous with their advice and guidance.’ – Caryn Tomlinson, Chair of the EMI Archive Trust
Salford Community Leisure
Salford City Archives is a treasure trove of information that boast a number of facets that capture the imagination and stimulate enquiry. The Salford City Archives is a local authority collection of mainly paper documents from the local historic townships, Boroughs and Urban District Councils that now make up the modern Metropolitan City of Salford. The collection is mainly collated from the local authority and relates to the business of the local council providing services to the local community. As such, it is a unique collection of items that tell us untold stories about the businesses, people and communities that have ever operated within the City of Salford. It is of immense importance to family historians, local historians, academics and local enthusiasts.
‘Salford has an incredibly rich history as home of the first canal, the first public park and the first free-to-use public library. It has also been a key player in economic, social and political change from before the industrial revolution right through to the current digital age. I’m delighted this grant will allow us to improve access to our archives to let more of our story be heard.’ – Councillor Stephen Coen, Executive Support for Culture, Leisure and Sport.
Grants awarded June 2019
New Contemporaries is a registered charity whose mission is to support emerging contemporary visual artists to successfully transition from education into professional practice. This is done primarily through an annual open-submission touring exhibition, which brings together some of the most exciting work by recent graduates from UK arts education. The collection offers an interesting insight into the early careers of some of our most significant contemporary artists and New Contemporaries’ vital place within the UK art scene.
‘We are delighted to have received the scoping grant in our 70th anniversary year. Throughout 2019, we are reflecting on our history and the unique role we have played in reflecting the UK’s changing landscape of artistic practice, arts education and exhibition spaces. This assessment of our post-1988 collection is the first step towards us activating our archive and revealing the significant part we have played in the development of contemporary art in the UK.’ – Kirsty Ogg, Director, New Contemporaries
Union Chapel Project is a charity that was founded in 1992 to care for the fabric of Union Chapel buildings (built in 1877) and keep them open to as wide a public as possible for heritage and cultural activities. We aim to curate and support a year-round programme of popular and innovative cultural performances and activities to enrich London’s diverse communities. Strengthening relationships within and between these communities through participative and transformative projects for social change is a key objective.
Our archive collection is an untapped treasure trove of stories. It tells tales of nonconformists and their 100 year journey from persecuted minority to being part of the establishment. It tells of the increasing acceptance of their liberal values, which have helped shape our society. There’s more modern material documenting Union Chapel’s life as a venue, such as posters from the very first Big Chill nights and legendary events by the likes of Procol Harum, Patti Smith, The Moth and Emeli Sandé. But it’s also full of the everyday too, revealing insights into the lives of real local people and their ambitions for a better world.
‘We are thrilled and grateful to receive this crucial support from Archives Revealed. Our community has been caring for and depositing into this happy array of boxes and cupboards for over 100 years. It is now time to share these wonderful stories with a wider public and we simply wouldn’t know where to start without the expert advice the award gives you. We are very excited to be bringing this project to life. Please get in touch if you would like to volunteer!’ – Philip Walker, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Union Chapel Project
Museum of London Docklands: Port of London Authority Archive
The Port of London Authority (PLA) Archive, housed at the Museum of London Docklands, is a unique collection documenting the history and development of London’s docks and river from the first enclosed docks built in 1802. While some of the early records in the collection have been catalogued, the large collection of later records from 1920 onwards are not catalogued or sorted. This includes meeting minutes, reports, correspondence, photographs, plans, deeds, film and art.
Access to a consultant provided by the Archives Revealed Scoping Grant will help develop a better understanding of the extent and content of the PLA collection, and advise on a plan for how to tackle this large archive to enable better access to the unique material it contains.
‘We are thrilled that our archive is receiving support of the Archives Revealed scheme. The PLA archive charts the development of the Port of London and the River Thames, and this project will undoubtedly help us to unearth new information and stories that will be invaluable to researchers and the public for generations to come. It is particularly timely as we look at scope for an exhibition to showcase unique artefacts and documents that have been unseen for many years.’ – Alistair Gale, PLA Director of Corporate Affairs and Strategy
Grants awarded March 2019
Lighthouse is the centre of excellence for live performance, film and visual art in the South West, providing a world-class cultural facility for Poole, Dorset and the wider region. Lighthouse has been around for 40 years and is often referred to as the largest arts centre outside London. The symphonic concert hall is home to the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. Lighthouse audiences discover and enjoy an extraordinary mix of art forms, diversity, renowned performers, emerging talent, experimental and challenging work – all under one roof.
‘We are delighted to have been awarded this grant, we are passionate about developing our archive and this award will help deliver some much needed support. The scoping work will feed into a project that seeks to collect, collate and make accessible a record of the history the Lighthouse, from its opening in 1978 to present day. Using the Lighthouse’s history and archive, we hope to engage a range of public audiences with the story and work of Lighthouse over its 40-year history.’ – Sara St George, Deputy CEO
Wheal Martyn is the UK’s only China Clay Mining Museum. Founded in 1975, the Museum is set in 26 acres of grounds near St Austell in Cornwall, on the site of two former china clay works. The Museum tells the story of Cornwall’s important china clay industry, caring for and making accessible an extensive collection of industry-associated items such as machinery, vehicles, social history objects, tools, minerals and art works. The historic grounds include a Scheduled Ancient Monument, a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a viewing platform overlooking a modern working china clay pit. The museum holds an extensive industry archive, largely comprised of documents and records from the company English China Clays Ltd – once one of the UK’s top 100 companies and leading exporters in the 1980s. The archive is cared for by the Museum’s China Clay History Society volunteers and represents a significant resource in terms of telling the story of this industry which not only shaped the landscape, economy and lives of people in mid-Cornwall but also has global reach.
Colin Vallance, Managing Director of Wheal Martyn, said: ‘We are delighted to have secured a Scoping Grant from The National Archives and are very grateful for their support which will be a catalyst for realising the potential of our significant archive. There is tremendous scope for the archive to be a source of inspiration and knowledge for more people within our community and beyond, helping to create a sense of place and deeper understanding of our rich heritage. We have a clear vision for the Archive and the work that this grant will enable is a very important first step in helping to inform and develop plans to realise these ambitions.’
Scottish Opera is Scotland’s national opera company and the largest performing arts organisation in Scotland. It is one of five National Performing Companies in Scotland, directly funded by the Scottish Government. Founded in 1962 by Sir Alexander Gibson, Scottish Opera is committed to bringing the widest possible range of opera, created and performed to the highest possible standard, to the maximum audience throughout Scotland and the UK. Each year it presents one of the most extensive touring programmes of any European opera company, performing in theatres, village halls and community halls across the country. The Company believes that opera is for everyone and its programme of outreach and education work reaches tens of thousands of children, young people and adults of all abilities and backgrounds each year.
‘I am delighted that Scottish Opera’s application to the Archives Revealed Scoping Grant programme has been successful. Our collection contains a wide range of musical, promotional and administrative records spanning the 57 year history of Scotland’s national opera company, which is of significant value to the cultural heritage of Scotland. This Scoping Grant will support us to develop a better understanding of the content and quality of our collection so we can move forward with our plans to provide greater public access to our archive, ahead of the upcoming 60th anniversary of the Company and the 50th anniversary of the Company’s Outreach and Education department.’ – Alex Reedijk, Scottish Opera General Director
The Theatres Trust
The Theatres Trust has acquired a significant archive since its inception and now houses around 45,000 items including the records of the Trust and donated special collections from significant theatre building experts such as the Frank Matcham Collection, Faulkner Collection, Brereton Collection and the GLC Collection. This is a wide reaching collection that no other organisations houses and includes correspondence of the Trust, photographs and theatres plans which are particularly unique in their entirety.
‘We are delighted to receive this Archives Revealed Scoping Grant, which will assist us to further develop our archive of theatre building records, theatre plans and photos so it can be accessed, used and enjoyed by more people in the future’. – Jon Morgan, Director, Theatres Trust
Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives
Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives (THLHLA) was formed from the library and archive services of the three Metropolitan Boroughs of Bethnal Green, Stepney and Poplar, which merged in 1965 to become Tower Hamlets. We collect, preserve, manage and provide free public access to a wide variety of materials which record, describe or illustrate the borough’s past and present. Through facilitating on site research with these collections and delivering outreach, exhibitions and events, we engage and connect local residents and visitors from across the UK and overseas with the rich histories of London’s East End.
The Mayor of Tower Hamlets, John Biggs said: ‘I’m delighted to hear that our Local History Library and Archives team have been successful in their initial application to help unlock many of the historic building plans that the borough holds. Behind each of these plans lay the personal stories and unique history that make up the East End, and the people who have lived here. This funding from the National Archives will help bring this currently unknown part of our shared history back to life in Tower Hamlets.’
The Tavistock Institute of Human Relations
The Tavistock Institute of Human Relations is a not-for-profit social science organisation based in London. It has been in formal operation since 1947 and grew out of wartime military leadership development and then civilian resettlement work. The Institute’s main purpose, from then until now, is for the public good – to help organisations, groups and individuals to learn, change, innovate and develop through the application of social science research to contemporary issues and problems. Experiential learning, systems thinking and group relations methodologies, among others, are employed to improve the performance of all types of organisations (including private, public and third sector) and the human experience of living and working in them. Through evaluation and action research, organisational development and change consultancy, executive coaching and professional development, The Tavistock Institute promotes compassionate leadership, sustainable change and ongoing learning.
‘TIHR’s decision to reactivate its archives has stirred an interest among scientific staff and professional partners to explore some combination of current practice and past action-oriented research. Sometimes within scholarly practice, there is a tendency to constrain the past into a narrow description as a jumping off point. It takes courage to go into the TIHR archive and make of it something relevant and applicable to the present.’ – Juliet Scott, Business Curator, Artist-in-Residence, Practice Director Arts and Organisation, Consultant, The Tavistock Institute
Royal Society of Sculptors
The Royal Society of Sculptors was established more than 100 years ago in 1904 and was granted Royal patronage in 1911. The RSS is an artist-led membership organisation offering an ambitious and engaging programme of activities for both members and the public. The organisation aims to lead the conversation about historical and contemporary sculpture through exhibitions, artists’ talks and creative workshops. The archive offers a unique and authoritative survey of sculptural genres and practitioners spanning the 20th and 21st century, as well as a comprehensive history of an organisation dedicated to sharing knowledge and passion for this unique art form.
‘The Society’s archive dates back to 1904 and is home to records for over 1,000 members as well as minute books and organisational records. This project will help us understand the archive’s significance and help us plan for its future care.’ – Caroline Worthington, Director, Royal Society of Sculptors
The British Deaf History Society
The British Deaf History Society (BDHS) was established as a charity in 1993 to promote and advance the interest in the discovery, preservation and conservation of the histories of Deaf people, their communities, culture and language. In summary the volunteer team and dedicated Trustees continue to achieve their charitable objectives by:
- Managing the British Deaf Museum, Archive and Art Gallery located in Warrington, Cheshire: the museum houses a unique Deaf Heritage collection, archives, a library and art collection. The museum increases visitors’ understanding of the experiences of Deaf people in society today and in the past
- Providing and supporting volunteer opportunities for deaf people that enable individuals to contribute their valuable experience and skills: for example, in collections management, research, publishing and archiving
- Delivering UK wide outreach Deaf Heritage Workshops which include family days, deaf children and young people events and conferences across UK communities/Deaf Communities that make deaf history more accessible, educational – and even fun
‘The British Deaf History Society is delighted to receive a Archives Revealed Scoping Grant. The grant will help us to scope our British Deaf History Society’s Photographic Collection (1890s to present day). Ultimately we would like to ensure the archive is conserved appropriately and made more accessible to a wider audience helping to preserve Deaf History for future generations.’ – Peter Jackson, Chief Executive, British Deaf History Society
Coventry Cathedral was built in the 1950s and designed by Sir Basil Spence. It sits beside two ruined buildings. One is the 13th Century Priory Church of St Mary, destroyed in the Dissolution in 1539, and the other was once the Parish Church of St Michael, which was devastated by the Coventry Blitz in 1940. This unique assembly – three cathedrals on one city centre site – tell a powerful story of death and rebirth. This narrative is made even more extraordinary by the words and actions of Provost Howard immediately following the German bombing. His universal message of forgiveness and reconciliation was a breath-taking moment then and today: it singles out Coventry as the only English Cathedral with a special mission and a clear purpose.
‘Sadly our Cathedral lost a lot of its heritage when it was destroyed during the Blitz. However, the Coventry Story is one of rebirth and reconciliation. We now hope that through the best use of our remaining and subsequent records we can tell this remarkable story in a captivating and authoritative way to both visitor and researcher.’ – Isabel Merrifield, Cathedral Administrator
Grants awarded October 2018
The Musical Museum – Music Carriers Collection
The music carriers collection consists of an internationally significant collection of perforated paper music rolls which includes examples of performances by Gershwin, Grieg and Rachmaninov, unique master rolls cut by the production factories, and rolls marked by individual performers.
The scoping grant will help the Musical Museum to devise an approach to research, improve the documentation and knowledge of the content through cataloguing, and look at how to increase access to and engagement with this important collection.
Michael Ryder, Chairman of the Musical Museum said: ‘Our museum’s collection of paper music rolls is not only nationally but internationally significant, given its extent and coverage. However, we have recognised that this area of the Museum’s work needs greater direction and professional input as we try to increase access to this almost “hidden” archive of information. We are altogether delighted to receive this support from The National Archives and look forward to working with them to explore these documents.’
Archives of the Association of Ukrainian Women in Great Britain
The Association of Ukrainian Women in Great Britain (AUW) is a community organisation bringing together Ukrainian women and other women with Ukrainian connections. The completeness of this archive makes this an important collection for the study of women’s organisations in the United Kingdom. The AUW archives are held at the Leicester Ukrainian Club and consist of complete runs of minutes, correspondence, reports, publicity and photographs relating to the activities of the AUW.
The Scoping Grant will focus on supporting the AUW to develop a strategic plan for the development and care of the archive collection, and gain a better understanding of the content and condition of the collection.
Maria Finiw, Chairwoman of AUW says: ‘We are delighted to receive this grant in our 70th anniversary year, when we have been reflecting on our achievements and looking forward to the future. Our archive is a unique source for the history of Ukrainian Women in Great Britain. Female perspectives on diaspora life are often missing from official records, so we are excited to start redressing the balance with this project.’
Richard Burton Archives: Vale (Europe) Ltd, Clydach Nickel Refinery records
Vale (Europe) Ltd deposited archives relating to the Mond Nickel Works with the Richard Burton Archives in 2015. The ‘Mond’ was the largest nickel works in the world when it was built in 1902 and the collection contains a remarkably complete set of records, photographs and publications relating to the history and workings of the Mond since it opened. The Scoping Grant will help the Richard Burton Archives to develop a clear plan of the cataloguing and preservation needs of the collection and the resources needed to make the collection accessible, leading to future innovative research and public engagement projects.
Sian Williams, Head of Research Collections at Swansea University said: ‘I am delighted that the Richard Burton Archives has been successful in securing a scoping grant. The history of the “Mond” Nickel Works and the nickel industry in Wales has been conspicuous by its absence from the industrial history of 20th century Wales. This grant is a first step towards making this important collection accessible and unlocking its potential for a wide range of projects and research.’
The Cheltenham Literature Festivals Archive
The inaugural Cheltenham Literature Festival was held in 1949. The archive contains tape recordings of events from 1990 onwards alongside literary design artwork, event programmes, invitation letters and other items of interest from a host of events featuring literary greats from the past 70 years. In 2018, the archive was transferred from a basement in a Town Hall to safer storage at Gloucestershire Archives, but remains uncatalogued and inaccessible to the public.
The Scoping Grant will support Cheltenham Festivals to understand the condition and value of the archive, encourage internal advocacy for the collection, develop a plan to make the archive accessible for research, and include recommendations for potential use and public engagement.
Nicola Tuxworth, Head of Programming for the Times and Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival says: ‘We are incredibly grateful to The National Archives for their support. The scoping grant they have awarded will give us such an important insight into the value and potential future of our archive as we develop our plans make it more accessible in celebration of the 70th Anniversary of the Festival.’
Grants awarded July 2018
Alexandra Park and Palace Charitable Trust
Alexandra Palace has a unique and enviable history, spanning entertainment, spectacle and innovation. The main aim of the archive service is to provide greater access to the site’s history and heritage assets, to build audiences, and to foster pride and affection for the park and palace.
In order to progress the commitment to preserving the archive long term, it is necessary to undertake a review of the collections to gain an understanding of scope and establish a high level catalogue structure. The scoping grant assessment will help the interpretation, creative learning and finance teams at Alexandra Palace to allocate resources for the archive and ensure the collection is embedded within the strategic direction of the organisation. Ultimately it will enable an otherwise inaccessible archive to become open for public consultation.
Louise Stewart, Chief Executive of Alexandra Park and Palace, said: ‘It was amazing and exciting to have found the archive materials during the East Wing restoration project, but we were also aware that it brought new responsibilities. The Trust is delighted to have received support from the Archives Revealed fund so that we can now give our archive the care, attention and treatment it deserves and so that the public can enjoy it.’
Society of Antiquaries of London
The Society of Antiquaries of London is Britain’s oldest learned society concerned with the study and understanding of the material past. The Archives are an unbroken record of the Society’s existence and activities since its first formal meeting on 1 January 1718.
The Scoping Grant assessment will help the Society to write a project plan and identify the resources required to implement an archive management system to achieve the goal of cataloguing the Society’s archives and making the collection accessible to new users and new avenues of research in the understanding of Britain’s material heritage.
Paul Drury FSA, President of the Society of Antiquaries of London said:
‘The Society’s archives are of national importance in the study of our cultural heritage, recording and documenting the formation of a scholarly community, of archaeological discoveries, and the development of the disciplines of archaeology and medieval history. Cataloguing our archives to modern standards is a high priority for us and this grant is especially welcome at this early stage of deciding what needs to be done and the best way of doing it – to define a project for which we can then seek wider support.’
Founded in 1818, the Morrab Library is an independent subscription library based in Penzance, Cornwall. The library’s particular focus, and strength, is in Cornish history, literature and people. The general archive has been continually enhanced since the library’s inception.
The Morrab’s collections are extensive and significant; however, few people – even within Cornwall – are aware of them. The Scoping Grant report will enable the library to write an archive development strategy to achieve its objective to be accessible to all, by bringing these secret collections to greater prominence and making them accessible to a wider public audience.
Lisa Di Tommaso, Head Librarian, said: ‘In the year in which we are celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Morrab Library, we are delighted that The National Archives is looking to support us in our ambition to ensure the library continues to flourish. We are always seeking ways to showcase our remarkable collections to a wider audience across Cornwall and the UK, and encourage greater use of them as research tools. This grant provides a stepping stone to achieving this.’
Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies
The Centre for Buckinghamshire Studies exists to preserve and make accessible materials about the history of the county and to tell the stories of what makes Buckinghamshire unique.
The Centre is working with The National Paralympic Heritage Trust to acquire and preserve collections relating to the Paralympic movement in the UK. The Scoping Grant will fund the assessment of The British Paralympic Association (BPA) collection. The report will help the Archivist understand what resources are required to make the collection available to researchers and develop an effective strategy for doing so.
Noel Brown, Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Public Health at Buckinghamshire County Council, said: ‘Our county’s Paralympic heritage is hugely important and our Archives team have been working hard to widen the access to collections such as this for some time. This scoping grant recognises the work that has already taken place, and will allow the team to take more informed steps in the best ways to preserve and interpret this unique collection from the British Paralympic Association.’
The charity Leonard Cheshire was founded in 1948 by Group Captain Lord Leonard Cheshire VC OM: it supports individuals to live, learn and work as independently as they choose, whatever their ability. The Leonard Cheshire Archive was set up in 1985 with the aim to collect, preserve and promote the memory of its founder and the 70 year history of his work and legacy.
The sound collection contains 532 tapes and includes interviews, speeches, TV and radio appearances, music recordings, sermons from the personal sound archive of Group Captain Leonard Cheshire, as well as interviews with key members of staff, service services, residents, volunteers and trustees of all of Leonard Cheshire’s charities. The scoping grant would focus on a conservation survey and appraisal of the tapes in the sound collection, leading to a conservation plan and the development of a robust approach to further work on the collection. This will enable future cataloguing and digitisation projects to proceed without further damage to the collection.
Archivist Stephanie Nield said: ‘I am thrilled that the Leonard Cheshire Archive has been successful in getting a scoping grant for the sound collection and we hope that this grant is a first step towards securing its future and sharing it with a much wider audience.’