Access to 13 archive collections is set to be transformed by a series of grants announced today. The National Cataloguing Grants Programme 2012 has awarded £407,950 to archives across the UK to help make these vitally important collections fully accessible for the first time.
Managed by The National Archives, the grants programme helps archives to catalogue previously inaccessible collections. Cataloguing past collections has uncovered treasures, which have provided unique insight into our nation’s history.
The programme is funded by a collective of charitable trusts and foundations including the Pilgrim Trust, the Foyle Foundation and the Wolfson Foundation – we are very grateful for their renewed support.
Each individual grant can last for up to two years, enabling the archives to explore each collection fully. Among those funded this year are:
University of Bristol Theatre Collection – Centre Stage/Backstage (£22,371)
This project releases the potential of the Raymond Mander & Joe Mitchenson Theatre Collection. The collection is broad in scope, covering all aspects of theatre over many years but in particular with reference to the 18th and 19th centuries. It includes a range of different types of archive material and has regional and national significance, telling the almost untold story of popular entertainments, and so has proven wide-reaching research potential. With its transfer to the University of Bristol the collection is now cared for and made available on a strong professional basis, including a new repository to house it.
Hampshire Record Office – ‘A Serche in Oure Evidences’ (£23,809)
The Winchester bishopric archives, in particular the medieval Pipe Rolls, have been used extensively by successive generations of medieval historians, national and international, who have long recognised their extraordinary potential as sources for the economic and social history of rural and urban southern England. By contrast, the post-medieval records in the collection have been less fully exploited but are the largest and most important grouping of manorial records deposited in Hampshire Record Office, with significant potential for future research for local, family, social, economic, landscape and building history. The records represent a rich resource for the history of the bishopric lands in Hampshire and beyond, containing a wealth of topographical and family name information and detail about ordinary people’s lives from the 16th to the 20th century.
East London Mosque ‘Cataloguing of East London Mosque Archives’ (£42,250)
This is strategic application which will create a national precedent for other Muslim institutions to invest in their archives and encourage the development an archival tradition within the various Muslim communities. The archive is a significant source for the history and the evolving identity of Britain’s Muslim community. Its research potential can only be unlocked if fully catalogued to a professional standard.
See full details of this year’s grant winners on our Cataloguing Grants Programme page.