Friends of Herefordshire Archives
Friends of Herefordshire Archives
HARC Autumn Walk 2016
Rotherwas 1916, Tuesday 13 September 2016
Rotherwas, 1916: once the summer barley was safely harvested, a vast munitions factory quickly sprang up. Soon thousands of
workers - many of them women - from as far away as London, Lancashire and Cork filled explosive shells for the Front Line.
The 2016 AGM was held at the our wonderful new building, known as The HARC, Fir Tree Lane, Rotherwas. It was a very successful evening, culminating with light refreshments and a talk, delivered by our Chairman Richard Smith, on the new HLF-funded project: "Rotherwas Royal Ordnance Factory: Front Line Duty".
The most important part of the AGM is that members voted for our new, more appropriate name change. Herefordshire no longer has a record office as such, as in the old days with the premises on Harold Street. HARC stands for Herefordshire Archive and Records Centre, and so we are now the FHA - Friends of Herefordshire Archives!
Here are some the pictures of the event:
HARC Christmas Tea Party, Monday December 7th 2015
This was a very successful event, with Christmas trees, tea, snacks & conversation. Here are some pictures.
Note: for more information on asbestos in the main library, see this link.
Grand opening of HARC with HRH The Duke of Kent KG
The official opening of the HARC took place on Thursday 1 October 2015, when Elizabeth Semper O’Keefe, our Collections and Archives Manager and Edward Harley, our President, welcomed HRH The Duke of Kent KG to our wonderful new building to unveil an official plaque to celebrate. Here are some pictures of the event.
You can see more pictures here
Meanwhile, to see the HARC Herald, a report from the contractors, Kier, click here.
And here is the latest report from Elizabeth Semper O’Keefe, Collections & Archives Manager , followed by a few recent pictures of the HARC:
Progress is good on all aspects of the new build project – the building itself is on target to be completed in early September, with furniture and some staff from other departments moving in after that. The documents themselves (being a fussy lot!) won’t move in until the environmental conditions are stable. The contractors are having to put huge fans in the strongrooms to dry out the air as the rooms are so airtight in order to meet the Passivhaus standard that there is not enough natural airflow to do this! We hope that we can move the collections in early 2015, with the building opening to the public in spring 2015. We know how frustrating it is for you not to be able to access the collections – but it will be worth the wait!
Meanwhile, back at Harold St, staff and volunteers are working hard to stock check and repackage collections ready for the move. They have already completed just over half the 17,500 boxes and we are now turning our attention to volumes and maps (10,000 and 5,000 respectively) – you can see the progress by accession number on the webpage: https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/leisure-and-culture/local-history-and-heritage/herefordshire-archives-and-records-centre/. The progress report is linked at the right hand side and is updated each month.
There is a unique opportunity to tour the old and the new record offices available as part of the Heritage Open Days on 11th September, visiting the Harold St site in the morning and HARC in the afternoon. Tour numbers are limited so booking will be necessary – look out for the Heritage Open Days leaflets for details.
We are also continuing with some outreach activities – the Godwins project has officially ended, but the interest continues and the exhibition has been displayed in a number of venues including Hereford Museum and All Saints Church. Items from the Archive collections are also on display currently in the WW1 exhibition at Hereford Museum, and Rhys took a small WW1 related display to the Castle Green fair in June.
We are also participating in some other projects including a national project to digitise school log books and together with Worcestershire are updating the TNA’s manorial index for Herefordshire and Worcestershire. But our focus is mainly on HARC and getting everything ready in time. We look forward to welcoming you there.
and a reminder that recent pictures, including the Topping Out Ceremony, can always be viewed here.
AGM was held on Friday
30th May at Hom Chapel, Hom Green, Walford, by kind permission of Erika White.
After the business meeting the Senior Archivist, Rhys Griffith,
gave a fascinating talk on the History of Hom Chapel, after
which some tasty refreshments were provided by the Committee and friends,
and everyone had a chance to chat and view this wonderful chapel
On a wet February afternoon, your Committee had the opportunity to visit the site of the new HARC building at Rotherwas. It was a fascinating tour of a new building being constructed according to the Passivhaus standard, and the effectiveness of the insulation is certainly something that every homeowner would love to have! Many photos were taken. A small number appear below, but the best way of exploring the collection is on a website better designed for such things: click here (and then click on 'Open Photo Viewer' at bottom right).
Rebecca Roseff gave a very interesting talk on Tue 18 February on the Archive of Cider Pomology. Here are some pictures:
Latest on the New Record Office Building in Rotherwas:
for up-to-date pictures of the site
See our 2014 programme here.
On Thursday 22 August a small ceremony was held to break the ground for the foundations of the new Archives and Records Office in Rotherwas, and several members of the FHRO including the chairman, treasurer and editor were there to celebrate the occasion. So it's official, and work has started! Some pictures appear here.
As mentioned in the July Newsletter, we hope that everyone will share our pleasure and excitement at the prospect of a new and specially-designed building. But times are hard and it seems almost inevitable that some finishing touches will be left for The Friends to address. The Committee has concluded that a fund-raising effort should be made to complement the new build, if possible adding a ‘wow’ factor. There can be no question of our seeking to duplicate or replace what Herefordshire Council is doing: our hope is to facilitate and improve public access to catalogues and holdings and make some contribution towards visitors having a productive and pleasurable experience.
We have been giving some thought to a fund-raising campaign to be run in the course of 2014. A sub-committee of
The Friends has been formed, including the Treasurer and Secretary, but we would very much like to find someone to join us to handle the publicity and press/public relations angles.
Could you help?
Friends' Cathedral Close Tour
A very successful and enjoyable tour of the Cathedral Close took place on Monday 22 July, led by Peter Harris.
Here are some photos:
Friends' AGM - see brief report and pictures here!
Reduced opening hours
From 1st April the Record Office will be reducing its opening hours in order to begin the preparation of the collections for relocation to new premises in 2014. We will open one week each month, including the Monday (except Bank Holidays) and Saturday.
The Friends have recently contributed £500 towards the purchase of an impressive volume of maps showing the Hampton Court Estate. The Friends of the National Libraries and the V&A Purchase Grant Fund each contributed a further £2,000. An additional £500 towards the purchase price was raised by the Record Office in its annual sale of surplus maps and books. Read more about it here.
The Friends were formed to support the work of the Herefordshire Record Office and continue to do so in a number of ways:
The Friends continue to contribute towards the purchase of the following:
Bookbinding is an ongoing activity paid for by the Friends, and donations are always welcome towards this and any other project we undertake.
© Friends of Herefordshire Archives 13 February, 2013