A few weeks ago Assistant Archivist Penny talked about rehousing some of the photographic collection and before that Archivist Helen introduced this year’s stocktake. In this post Gavin McGuffie, Archive Catalogue & Project Manager, and Archivist Louise Todd wraps up this year’s stocktake.
A considerable amount of work goes on behind the scenes before files are made available to researchers. Some of this work can only be done when The Search Room is closed because of the amount of space required in order to carry it out. We took advantage of our annual two week stock taking closure in order to carry out an audit of files created during the 1970s and 1980s.
The audit involved checking to make sure that no files were missing and listing them so that they can be retrieved and appraised. It went very well with almost 700 boxes being sorted, much more than we had initially anticipated!
In addition to the audit another small team of staff used the weeks to get appraised files into a final arrangement for their cataloguing. This involved removing more than 5,000 files from a number of different places (in the yearly boxes for 2nd review appraisal mentioned above, amongst 2nd review files appraised before 2008, within a couple of large series of registered files POST 121 and POST 122) and arranging them in their original reference number (so, for instance, gathering all the Marketing Department Design files together, those with the code MKD/CJ). This produced 438 acid free boxes of POST 154 – the series which represents the files created by the Marketing Department, 387 boxes of POST 157 – files created by the Postal Operations Department and 47 boxes of POST 160 – files created by the Secretary’s Office. This leaves them in a state in which they can be catalogued far more easily and also makes them considerably easier to locate since they are now stored together.