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Welcome to the Museum Librarians and Archivists Group (MLAG) formerly the London Museum and Librarians Group (LMLAG)

Archives & Access Toolkit – Practice sharing resource now online

The Archives & Access project (2012–2017), funded by the Heritage Lottery and Tate, concluded this year. The project provided digital access to over 52,000 pieces from Tate Archive, and developed a range of outreach and participatory activities in order to support learning with archives at Tate Britain, on the Tate website, and with partners across the UK.

In order to share knowledge and experiences of all aspects of the project with others who are underway with – or considering embarking upon – digitisation initiatives, we have published the Archives & Access Toolkit on the Tate website.

The toolkit contains information on the approaches taken to all aspects of Archives & Access, including:

  • Funding and project management
  • Project design and development
  • Publication of materials
  • Supporting learning with archives

We found practice sharing and conversations with colleagues from across and beyond the sector to be invaluable when developing Archives & Access.  In that spirit, we hope this toolkit will be a useful resource for others working with archives, digitisation, and outreach.

Any questions about the project or the toolkit should be directed to

Hannah Barton (on behalf of the Archives & Access project team)


Opening Access to the Heritage & Education Centre

The Lloyd’s Register Foundation has just launched a new call for applications regarding use of the Heritage & Education’s library and archived material. Would it be possible to circulate the below information? The call is a fantastic research opportunity!

More details can be found on the website.

Applicants need to apply using the specially created application form in the document.

Essentially we are looking to fund between 3-6 small scale research projects over 3-6 months using HEC’s collections (between £5,000 – £10,000).

We do not fund individuals but are looking for museums, archives, libraries and Universities to apply with associated collections to put ours in a wider context.

The funding will pay for travel, and other costs but not salaries.

The research projects have to fit in with the research priorities from the research plan:

  1. Development of ship and yacht building since the 1800s
  2. Impact of maritime sector on world trade and trade routes
  3. Safety at sea
  4. Depiction of maritime technology in art

Applications are due in by 5 January, and will go through a peer review process, before the final ones going to the Grants Application Meeting (GAM) in February.

Funding will be awarded sometime in March 2018.

Repository Workshop at the British Museum 14 December 2017

MLAG are holding a conference on museum repositories and open access publishing at the British Museum on the afternoon of Thursday 14th December. There will be speakers from CILIP, Natural History Museum, JISC, National Museums Scotland and the British Library.

Bookings can now be made for this event at the following URL:

The cost is £25 (£20 for MLAG members).

Workshop programme: MLAG 2017 Repository Workshop

TWA Digitisation Grant 2017

TWA Digitisation Grant 2017 winners revealed

After receiving over 100 applications from local authority and business archives, libraries and museums (a new record), TownsWeb Archiving has announced the winners of its 2017 Digitisation Grant.

This year’s winner is Dorset History Centre with its project to preserve the deteriorating Graham Herbert Collection; a unique 7000-strong collection of photographic negatives taken by the eponymous local Weymouth photographer between 1953 and 1983. Dorset History Centre wins the primary grant of £5000 funding, provided in the form of TWA digitisation services.

The 2017 runner up prize of £2000 went to Birmingham Museums Trust, to support their project to digitise the Birmingham History Trade Documents Collection. The collection offers an unmatched insight into the city’s commercial history, featuring trade catalogues, advertisements, correspondence and other documents.

On hearing of her applications success Cassandra Pickavance, archivist at Dorset History Centre and lead applicant, said:

“We are delighted to have been awarded the funding from TWA to save the Herbert collection from being lost due to the irreversible deterioration of the negatives. We look forward to continuing to share the fantastic images of our recent past in outreach activities with a wide range of people.”

Last year’s esteemed judging panel returned once again to assess the 2017 applicants – featuring Archives and Records Association (UK & Ireland)’s Chief Executive, John Chambers; HLF-appointed Expert Advisor, Claire Adler; and Senior Digitisation Consultant at TownsWeb, Paul Sugden.

Speaking on the winning Dorset History Centre project, Judge Claire Adler said:

“The urgent need to digitise these photographs was eloquently communicated as well as the need to record and reinterpret a way of life which is currently changing in Dorset. The images have already been used with people with learning disabilities and I was delighted to see that they will be using the images to engage with communities across the region. I wish them every success with their project.”

TownsWeb Archiving plans to offer the Grant funding again in May 2018.

Readers can watch the winners announcement and find out more about this year’s successful projects here: