Denbighshire Archives- Review 2017

Another year has passed and it has been another productive and busy year for staff at the office. The highlight of the year has to be achieving accredited status. This is a great achievement for us and it means that we are recognised nationally and meet current standards.

2017 has also seen lots of discussion around collaborative working between the North Wales archive services and we hope to look at this in more detail next year. We will be looking at ways in which we can start working collaboratively and try to tackle mutual challenges such as shortage of storage space, conservation needs and digital preservation together.

map

Staff

We have seen a few new members of staff here at the office during 2017.

We have new project staff working on our North Wales Hospital collection. Joanna has now left us having come to the end of her contract in December. During her 3-month post, Joanna completed a number of practical tasks by preparing and ordering repackaging materials, as well as carrying out a conservation survey and offering us invaluable advice which we will use throughout the project.

The staff will be very sorry to see Joanna go and it has been great to have a conservator on site. We wish her all the best in the future.

Our regular researchers will have noticed a new face in the searchroom this year as Jackie joins us as an archive assistant. A big welcome to Jackie, we hope you enjoy it here!

Website

A number of large estate and business catalogues have been added to the website this year including Wynnstay and Galltfaenan Estate. We now have 75% of our catalogues available to search, in full, online.

Our photographic collections are now available to search online and a proportion of the collection is available to view as a thumbnail and available to order as an instant download.

We have improved out map viewer by adding a Tithe Map layer which has been incorporated as a result of the Cynefin project and national places.library.wales website.

tithemapsonline

Over 750 people have registered on the website and we have had over 97,000 page views this year.

Researchers and Enquiries

741 researchers used our office during 2017 consulting 3184 original documents. Local history is the most popular subject for research accounting for 49% of our researchers, closely followed by family history accounting for 39% of researchers.

We answered 943 enquiries by post, email or telephone. We now have 679 followers on Facebook.

Grants

We have received a number of grants this year including;

  • A Wellcome grant to catalogue and repackage the North Wales Hospital Collection.
  • ARCW grant to export our catalogues to the Archives Hub
  • National Archives New Burdens grant to cover the cost of additional shelving

New shelving

Events and Groups

360 visitors attended our events during 2017 including our Vintage Fair in September, the Unlocking the Asylum Project Launch in November, and our annual student visit from Glyndwr University history students.

Cataloguing and Accessions

You can keep an eye on our new accessions on The National Archives survey here.

37 new accessions were recorded during the year including records of;

 

Volunteers

We now have 11 onsite volunteers and 15 virtual volunteers helping us with numerous ongoing projects such as:

  • Retrospective conversion of estate, business and council catalogues.
  • Box listing of the large collection of Clerk’s papers continues
  • Improvement and digitisation of the catalogues for our school records
  • Full transcription of our constabulary Mug Shot books
  • Auditing and re-packaging collections

In total our volunteers have contributed over 1150 hours of volunteer time during 2017.

Once again, thank you to all our researchers and volunteers, we have had a very productive and busy year!

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