What a lively and productive week in the Archive and Study Centre!
The PETT team were thrilled to hear that two volunteers from the Caldecott Community would be joining us this week to help out in the Archive and Study Centre for a week. Little did we realise just how productive they would be, or that their residential visit would prompt another former child to pop in and help out. Three Caldecott children!! Here's just a taste of the week achievements:
Robert Clarke made great inroads into the Caldecott Association archives, sorting materials of which many have been collected and brought to the Archive over a number of years by Robert himself. The Caldecott Association Collection (SA/CA) is made up of a vast amount of material and Robert, with help from archivist Matt Naylor, has now started to bring cohesion as well as coherence to it all, by listing materials and identifying its constituent collections.
Sorting boxes and listing their contents, applying his knowledge of the accessions over the years and suggesting what needs to be done with these various sub-divisions, lots (and lots and lots) of work was put into our Caldecott Collections Omnibus document, which has given us a clearer overall picture of the collection(s), and will help us and future volunteers find our way, and ensure that those responsible for bringing these documents in to us are recognised. In the middle of all this, Robert found time to scan over twenty new images, remove rusty staples from documents, and put photographs in melinex sleeves as he was going through (helping to ensure optimum preservation conditions for material, etc).
Mark Sevia, meanwhile, worked on the oral history collection, working through his own transcripts and the recordings he had made with Craig during the Caldecott Archive Weekend earlier this year - listening to the recordings and reading his transcripts while checking for any errors or misspellings. In our morning discussion he gave us a rare insight into this process (which people usually undertake at home); and Mark and our oral historian Gemma Geldart, after several discussions about the oral history 'journey', decided to formalise things: They sat down in Gemma's office and recorded a reflective interview in which Mark discussed why the process - from the first recording, to revisiting his story six months later - has been so important to him. Mark explained in response to his recordings, that even the silences were interesting: 'That pause is my pause!' he said; and revealed that hearing his story told back to himself was as moving an experience as the actual recording of it.
Mark also told us all about the first time he saw the Queen, and someone remarked, 'That sounds like a digital story'. So amongst his other work, Mark found time to go through the Caldecott image bank, selecting photographs to use and then recorded a short story before working with Gemma to create a two-minute digital story. The film premiered, to the rapturous applause of the team, on Wednesday before lunch and will soon be available on our Vimeo channel for those who couldn't attend. Watch this space!
On Tuesday, 'Moley' popped in, bringing some more of her wonderful paintings of Caldecott to show - What a talented bunch our volunteers are too! Keen to get involved and make the most of her visit, and after a quick tutorial with Chris, she began transcribing one of the unrestictedCaldecott interviews, pausing only to reflect or comment on what an interesting process it was! Mark also took the opportunity to learn about transcribing with Chris, and decided to take his reflective interview away with him to transcribe at home. In fact, all three volunteers left with 'homework' and promises to return. And with a week like this, we're all hoping that that's sooner rather than later!
There are lots of different opportunities for volunteering at PETT, so whether you have a few hours, a few days, or are smply curious and would like to know, please contact us here or call 01242 621200
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