Did You Know?

Before July 1912, the original copyright holder was the creator of the photo, i.e. the photographer. Surely not a surprise.

However between July 1912 and July 1989, the original copyright holder was the owner of the material on which the image was taken, i.e. the negative. This could be a corporate body such as Magnum Photos. So the creativity in taking the photo no longer mattered!

Fortunately, for the photographer, since August 1989 copyright law again regarded them as the creators, and therefore the original copyright holders.

Copyright is never as simple as you think. If you don’t know the date of the photo, you might be trying to trace the wrong source for permission to reproduce the image.


Did You Know?

Under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, Works of Artistic Craftsmanship require an element of artistic merit not considered with most other types of artistic work.

The Act offers no definition for artistic merit, but it is generally accepted that a work of Artistic Craftsmanship requires skilled craftsmanship and is intended to have aesthetic appeal, e.g.                                                                                                                                                                            stained glass windows, bookbinding, needlework and designer clothing.


Did You Know?


The Copyright, Designs and Patents Act defines              Musical Works as:

“Original works combining melodies and harmonies, of any date, which are capable of being performed to produce sounds appreciated by the ear, and which are recorded in writing or some other form.”


However, “sounds appreciated by the ear” is undefined in the Act, but is not subjective.

woman wearing leather jacket with tongue out

A Week’s Work Experience at Derbyshire Record Office

Posted on behalf of James Slinn of Matlock, who volunteered between 1st and 5th July 2019.

Work experience this week has been enjoyable. I have gained a lot of knowledge and experience about the archives, ordering, locating, retrieving, issuing documents, and conservation work.

On the first day, I had an introduction and tour of the Record Office lead by Paul Beattie. He walked me down into the archives; I found this bit very interesting. Many records and old documents are kept here. I was particularly interested in Edmund Potter`s, (Beatrix Potter’s grandfather) pattern books. These were full of brightly coloured images.

Edmund Potter

On Monday afternoon I was in the Records Management office with Mark Smith who told me about what a records management is and how they deal with enquiries, I found this bit really quite interesting.

On Tuesday, I listened to a presentation on the Derbyshire Record Office. I also spent time working on a project researching dates for historical buildings and significant Derbyshire folk. I learnt a lot about the History of Derbyshire.

On Wednesday, I spent time in the Local Studies Library researching my family ancestors. I found this fascinating and found out information about my family history that I never knew and was able to take this information back to my parents. I answered some enquiries in the computer room where I learnt how to use the card catalogue.

discovering franklin

On Thursday morning, I spent time with Lien in the Conservation Lab. I helped dry clean one of John Franklin’s books, and repaired old documents. I really enjoyed this area of work. In the afternoon, I worked alongside volunteers cleaning and packaging archival documents. I enjoyed working as part of a team.

On Friday, I had a review and evaluation of the whole week. I have now finished my project.

I would like to thank all the staff at Derbyshire Records Office for making my work experience so enjoyable and for being so helpful.

Essential electrical maintenance work, 29 April – 10 May 2019


Essential electrical maintenance work will be taking place at the Record Office from 29 April to 10 May 2019.

This may result in some disruption to the retrieval of the historical documents from our stores.

If you’re planning to visit us during these dates, we strongly advise that you contact us in advance of your visit, then we can let you know whether we’ll be able to access the original records you’re wishing to view.

New acquisition: George Beeland, drapers and cloth merchants

While Derbyshire Record Office rarely buys documents, much like No. 33 buses, another find has popped up at auction and we’ve made another exception.

This time for three ledgers detailing the accounts of George Beeland’s wholesale drapers and cloth merchants business, which traded from 23 Iron Gate, Derby throughout the 1850s.

3 Vols

George Beeland originally ran this business in partnership with William Henry Wood. However, when they went their separate ways at the start of 1850, Beeland continued the business as sole owner until 1862.


Stephen Glover, in his History and Directory of the Borough of Derby, notes the partner’s started trading from Iron Gate in 1849. It even appears that George may have come from a family of drapers. Various trade directories record a William Beeland, draper trading from Iron Gate as early as 1843.

Corn Market

When Beeland and Wood established the business in 1849, there was also a George Beeland, draper and a William Beeland junior, woollen draper and tailor, both on Iron Gate. William Beeland senior, a draper, traded from 57 Friar Gate, together with perhaps his wife and daughter (Mrs. & Miss Beeland) who ran a millinery and dress rooms from the same address.

If you’d like to these account books, just come and visit us and ask for D8172.

A Beginner’s Guide to Copyright


We’ll be running another of our Beginner’s Guide to Copyright sessions at Derbyshire Record Office at 2 pm TOMORROW.

 What can you do? What can’t you do? What is right and what is copyright?

The session will help you understand the basic principles of Copyright law as well as recent changes to the regulations, and where that leaves heritage and community groups who wish to publish or display images and articles, or anything else which may be under copyright.

Tickets are £3, which is payable upon entry.

To book a place, please use our Eventbrite Page

A Beginner’s Guide to Copyright


We’ll be running another of our Beginner’s Guide to Copyright sessions at Derbyshire Record Office at 10 am on Thursday 21st April.

What can you do? What can’t you do? What is right and what is copyright?

The session will help you understand the basic principles of Copyright law as well as the most recent changes to the regulations, and where that leaves heritage and community groups who wish to publish or display images and articles, or anything else which may be under copyright.

Tickets are £3, which is payable upon entry.

To book a place, please use our Eventbrite Page: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/mytickets/508685274/

Volunteering at Derbyshire Record Office, Summer 2015

A lowly university student, panic-stricken and preceding her third and final year of studying Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations, it suddenly dawned on me… I need to decide what I want to do with my life!


The summer was fast approaching and I knew it would be the best (and last) real opportunity I would have to fully commit myself to work experience before having to decide which career path I would like to follow. I’ve always thought of working in the heritage sector, as history and learning are my passion and also the basis of my degree. In addition, I’m also extremely interested in local history, as I’ve grown up with parents who encouraged and fuelled this interest. Therefore, when searching through the options available, I came across Derbyshire Record Office in Matlock. I’ve always been interested in archives but, to be completely honest, was not too sure what it really meant to be an ‘archivist’. However, I was curious and intrigued to find out.

I got in touch with the Record Office and was put forward to Paul Beattie. We communicated via email and phone and he helped me to plan my volunteering around university and my part-time job. The Record Office were extremely flexible and helpful when it came to actually planning the time in which I could volunteer, basically leaving it to my discretion, which was tremendously accommodating for somebody like myself with such a busy schedule.

While volunteering, I was able to experience all areas available at the Record Office, including; the archives, local studies and conservation. I worked with various members of staff, all who were incredibly friendly, helpful and skilled at their jobs. I was able to experience: box-listing, cataloguing using archival software CALM, using microfilms, heat-set repair techniques on documents and many more equally exciting and new tasks. I received talks by different departments on; record keeping, conservation, archival projects, microfilm, special archives and more. I was also even lucky enough to view a few of the wonders of the archive – my personal favourite being Beatrix Potter’s grandad’s fabric books, which are breathtakingly beautiful and well preserved. While I was there, I was given the opportunity to delve into every area available and spend time where I enjoyed the most – this, in particular, really made my time spent at the Record Office, worthwhile and irreplaceable, as it accommodated my interests but also allowed me to explore other areas I had not considered before.

My time spent volunteering at Derbyshire Record Office has been both memorable and invaluable. I was welcomed warmly by all staff, given interesting and exciting tasks to complete that were accustomed to my own interests, and I was made to feel instantly ‘at home’. The people I met were highly skilled professionals who are accomplished at their jobs and more than willing to teach volunteers valuable skills that they can take away from the experience. They were also kind enough to answer my persistent questions about career opportunities and pathways and even gave me information and sources to look further into. I am immensely grateful to everybody at DRO for offering me their time and wisdom this summer. I know that my time spent volunteering has definitely helped bring clarity to my mind over the path to reaching my desired career. Thank you so much.

Kerry Edwards