So how do you get a job in Special Collections? I recently wrote a blog post for Facet Publishing which reflected on the skills and experience required to get started in this often competitive profession: How do I make a career in Special Collections? The post was inspired by talks and discussions at CILIP Rare … Continue reading How to get a job in Special Collections
This year I am embarking on a journey towards Higher Education Academy Fellowship. This award is given to academics and other higher education workers who can demonstrate professional commitment to learning and teaching. Why should librarians apply for HEA fellowship? To become better teachers (and learners)! It's so easy, given the constraints of time-slots and … Continue reading Why I’m applying for HEA Fellowship
The embedded archivist I am delighted to report that we at the University of Bradford now have our own embedded archivist. Not familiar with this term? An embedded archivist works within the structure that is creating the records and is therefore ideally placed to encourage and foster an archiving culture. As archive services move into … Continue reading Boxes among the bones: embedding an archivist in Arch Sci
News of a wonderful find at the University of Reading Special Collections. While cataloguing a collection of fragments, Special Collections librarian Erika Delbecque spotted something exciting ... a leaf from the Sarum Ordinal printed by William Caxton in 1476 or 1477 - the only copy of this part of the book known to survive! The … Continue reading “I suspected it was special as soon as I saw it …”: Reading’s Caxton leaf
In 1994, librarians were learning how to do gopher searches (younger readers, this was a way to search the internet, just before the World Wide Web came along). Acronym-laden databases on CD-ROM were delighting/scaring our users. I became a Chartered Member of the Library Association (now CILIP). The information world has changed a bit since … Continue reading Why I Revalidated
Delighted to share news of a report which should help anyone trying to make the case for investment in special collections. Or indeed considering whether they should invest in them ... Unique and distinctive collections: opportunities for research libraries is freely available online from the Research Libraries UK website. It's based on fieldwork I carried … Continue reading How can unique and distinctive collections support University mission?
Discovering Collections, Discovering Communities, a joint effort by RLUK and The National Archives, is fast becoming a must-attend conference for archives and special collections folk. The idea? We face tough times and huge challenges: let's collaborate and find new ways to survive and thrive. The second in the series was held last week in the … Continue reading The Pukka Pad and the Big Cake: #DCDC14 Conference Part 1
The British Library's Preservation Advisory Centre was closed in March 2014. Concerns about the loss of this valuable service were raised by many organisations and individuals. It is a pity that it has not proved possible to find a way to fund it though it is good to note that the publications (such as the … Continue reading Collection Care at the British Library
This post from the Special Collections librarian at the Jerwood Library, Trinity Laban, is inspiring. It tells a story of hidden, neglected special collections which were a burden and a concern for library staff. The writer shows how making the collections visible and making the case for their support changed everything. It's particularly interesting that … Continue reading Making the Case is Key for Music
Are you struggling with increasing numbers of users, demand for digital, crumbling collections, unsuitable storage space, intellectual property conundrums, born-digital collections, lack of skills, pressure of public sector cuts and recession ...? You are not alone! Two essential new reports reveal the challenges faced by UK special collections and archives and give us the evidence … Continue reading Too Many Collections, So Little Time?