Today marks the launch of our annual publication celebrating the work of the archives sector: ‘A Year in Archives’. As always, this year’s publication explores exciting projects and innovative approaches from archive services of all kinds. Seeing the ways in which archives approach opportunities and challenges is so inspiring, and we want to share that with the sector and beyond.
This year’s publication takes inspiration from one of the biggest events in the 2017 archives calendar. In March, we launched ‘Archives Unlocked’, the new strategic vision for the future of the archives sector, with the support of our DCMS ministers. A Year in Archives 2017 uses the ambitions of the vision and the action plan to help us to capture some of the great work happening under the themes of trust, enrichment, openness, digital capacity, resilience and impact. It shows how hard archives are already working to make those aims a reality, and will hopefully inspire others to follow suit.
It has been an incredibly busy few weeks in the sector. At the end of last week, we announced that we had reached the major milestone of 100 accredited archive services (104 to be precise!) This week, we have our annual conference: Discovering Collections, Discovering Communities (DCDC17), which we run jointly with Research Libraries UK. It is fitting that we launch A Year in Archives at this conference, as it brings people together from a range of sectors – academic, museums, libraries and archives – with a common interest in the fascinating collections of the UK’s documentary heritage.
Last week was also the launch week for the fifth annual Explore Your Archive campaign, in which archives opened their doors to even more visitors at events. Archives took over social media, flooding twitter with images from collections for the daily themes – from foodstuff and fashion, to love letters and labcoats. All these events demonstrate what a dynamic, adaptable and vibrant sector this is, and how much there is to shout about when it comes to our archives.
I hope you enjoy reading A Year In Archives as much as we enjoyed creating it.