Time flies when you’re having fun! It’s hard to believe that it’s five years ago today that the Record Office and the Local Studies Library joined together in a newly extended and refurbished building. We were hurriedly tidying away the workmen’s tools as the doors opened and the first customers came in!
It feels like barely five minutes ago, but a lot has happened since February 2013. Over 88,000 people have come to use the Record Office and we’ve produced 46,575 original documents for our customers. We’ve also reached over 8700 people outside the Record Office doing events and activities for all ages – and let’s not forget all the emails, letters and calls we’ve received – nearly 17,500.
But numbers don’t tell the real story, so what have we been doing in the last five years? Here are a few highlights:
If you really want to get a sense of what we’ve been up to over the last five years, then browsing through this blog tells the story… from cataloguing, digitising and preserving our collections to going out and about engaging people with Derbyshire’s amazing past.
So what do the next five years hold?
Well, in part the future is digital, so we’re working on plans to continue improving digital access to our collections – this is a long process, but in five years’ time (and hopefully sooner!) we should have a radically different website and much more digital content.
In the meantime, we’re finishing off the Amazing Pop Up Archives project, which has seen us ‘popping up’ with our collections around the county. We are also winding up our NUM cataloguing project and will be blogging more about that in the future.
There are plenty more projects in the pipeline, too – we usually have at least one funding bid on the go for cataloguing, conservation and/or outreach activities, although we can’t say anything on our blog about them until we know whether we’ve been successful.
One new project that started last summer involves a group of volunteers improving our descriptions of maps of the Derwent Valley. They should be finishing that job soon, after which we will be digitising the maps so they can go online as part of the Derwent Valley Mills ‘Vital Valley’ project. We’ll be looking to involve more volunteers over the next few years in other projects, building on the group of wonderful people who already support us, so if you’d like to be involved, get in touch.
We’ve had a busy and exciting five years in our lovely building. Thanks to all our staff, volunteers and customers for being part of the last five years – here’s to the years to come and all the opportunities they bring!