Gateway to Your Archives: A Sneak Preview!

You’ve probably read in my previous blog posts that I’m currently planning archive training workshops for community groups across York. As I start bringing the content for these workshops together, here’s a sneak preview of what’s coming in 2015!

The consultation process for the Gateway to History project revealed to us very early on that communities want advice and support for managing their archives. With this in mind, our activity plan includes delivery of archive training workshops. These workshops will include practical and relevant advice and to make sure we deliver this, everyone I talk to gets a chance to say what they would like to learn about.

My discussions so far have revealed the most popular subjects to be:

  • Archive storage including case studies
  • Risks to your archives (fire/flood/theft)
  • Cataloguing your collections
  • How to manage digital records
  • Ideas for how you can use your archives for innovative projects
  • How archives should be prepared for deposit at York Explore
Cupboard or community archive? A case study sneak preview!

To turn these subjects into a workshop session and a written resource I’m  working through best practice archive standards and guidance. The main source of this guidance is The National Archives and the British Library Collection Care website with information for both archivists and non-archivists. The problem I’ve found is that this guidance  assumes their audience is a large organisation with available funds to install a purpose built strong room.

I’m creating a resource that covers all the important information but presents it in a way which is realistic  for groups with limited funds, storage space and staffing. Our aim is that the training and resources we provide give community groups the confidence to take control over their collections. We also want communities to see  Explore as an established place of  friendly professional support where their ideas can be shared and made a reality.

If you’re part of a community group in York and interested in learning about how to manage your archives, get in touch and share your thoughts on content for our workshops. We don’t yet have dates  finalised for the workshops in 2015, but if you’re interested in coming along get in touch and we’ll add you to our contacts list. Further details will follow towards the end of this year.

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