Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: July 2017

Library Space Project
During a temporary closure period the Archives office has been operating from the Silent Reading Room on Floor 02. This arrangement is expected to continue until Friday 18 August.

Further details of Archives closure and the Library Space Project.

Summary of Teaching Sessions and Seminars held within the British Archive for Contemporary Writing (BACW) during academic Year 2016/17 and drawing on archive material in our collections

Total participants 2016/17 = 132
72 students were undergraduates and 60 postgraduates
This represents a 78% increase on the previous year 2015/16.

Sessions took place with literature, creative writing and media students and involved a wide range of archive collections, with material selected and tailored for relevance to their module. Students were introduced to archive handling skills and the process of archive research. Satisfaction levels were very high with 99% of students reporting that the session was very good or good and 97% reporting that it was relevant to their module. 98% of students said they felt encouraged to visit the Archive independently.

FLY 2017
As part of Fly 2017 – the Literary Festival for Young People – A BACW led workshop took place with the Norfolk Record Office and UEA author and lecturer, Rachel Hore, on using archives as inspiration for creative writing. Year 10, Year 12 and 13 students were introduced to original archive material and shown how to use collections as writing prompts to generate story ideas, as well as to flesh out character and historical setting. Students read and shared passages inspired by the Kenney Papers suffragette archives.

UEA Open days

UEA Open day 2017-148_Steve Wright Photography Limited

Steve Wright Photography Ltd

During UEA Open Days 7 and 8 July – there were exhibitions of archive material and talks on how the BACW contributes to undergraduate academic teaching and research at UEA and the ways in which students have become involved in our Unboxed project.

Permissions/copyright
A flurry of requests has been received for permission to quote or publish from the Pritchard and Zuckerman Archives. Mostly these are submitted from former users and visitors who are nearing the end of a long research or writing project. We are delighted to receive these requests as they confirm the research value of the collections, opening them up to a wider audience and to further interpretation. While we don’t hold copyright for much of the content we can usually provide a good steer on who to contact.

Doris Lessing Archive
A request for Lessing’s 1940s love letters to John Whitehorn has come from an overseas scholarly writer on Lessing.

J.D. Salinger – Hartog Letters

salinger5sm

J.D. Salinger – Hartog Letters

We were asked to verify a signature in a book held by a collector. As the letters we hold are all only informally signed ‘Jerry’ we were unable to confirm.

Kenney Papers (suffragettes)
We received a copyright enquiry for Annie Kenney’s published memoir Memories of a Militant (1924).

Pritchard Papers

PP.16.2.30.56.3.1955

Lawn Road Flats London, 1955

A new resident of Lawn Road Flats has arranged a visit to read the Papers. The Archives has welcomed a steady stream of residents who are curious about the 1930s history of the iconic building which they now call home.

Special Collections
12 requests.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: June 2017

In June, Archives staff settled into the Silent Reading Room just along the corridor and we expect to be here for several weeks. Refurbishment work continues on Floor 02 and the builders have gone to great lengths in safeguarding our equipment and the collections, even installing temporary walls and doors.

Further details on the temporary closure of Archives.


BACW

  • UEA students have been consulting Tash Aw’s Archive and Doris Lessing’s correspondence.
  • 10 PhD students of creative writing, literature, history, languages and linguistics attended our joint British Archive for Contemporary Writing and East Anglian Film Archives workshop at the CHASE Encounters Conference  held at UEA on 29 and 30 June.The workshop highlighted the opportunities and challenges of using film and literary Archive material for research and teaching, as well as the day to day role of the Archivist and the future challenge for archives in managing born digital material.

    Students were provided with hands on access to copies of unique archive material to help simulate the process of independent archive research. This provoked some interesting discussion, particularly amongst creative writers who were prompted to consider their own archive material.

Kenney Papers (Suffragettes)
• We are preparing materials for an external exhibition to be held in 2018/19.
• The collection is being used by a writer as the basis for her work of fiction.

Pritchard Papers
One user is researching for a book on Lawn Road Flats and artists of the 1930s; another is writing a book on art, design and science.

Other enquiries related to the Pritchard family tree; and to Walter Gropius’ farewell dinner guest list from 1937.

Roger Deakin

ShepherdsHutSummer

The shepherd’s hut to which Deakin refers in The Garden. Copyright Estate of Roger Deakin

Users are reminded that the BBC recording of Cigarette on the Waveney is publicly available online (a tranquil documentary of Deakin’s trip down the River Waveney in a white canoe). For UEA members, his recordings of The House and The Garden are available on Box of Broadcasts.

UEA Collection
Malcolm Bradbury’s large magazine and newspaper archive has been accessed by a visiting academic in LDC (School of Literature, Drama and Creative Writing).

Zuckerman Archive
The collection has been accessed for the correspondence of Lord Zuckerman, Lord Mountbatten and Margaret Thatcher; and for architectural drawings of German and Italian buildings held within WWII bombing reports.

Special Collections
RauschenbergA valuable addition to the collection has been a limited facsimile edition of Robert Rauschenberg‘s 34 illustrations after Dante’s Inferno. Produced by New York’s Museum of Modern Art and presented in a grey clothbound clamshell box, it includes the trade publication. Rauschenberg’s series of drawings from 1958–60 are each reproduced at actual size on individual sheets; a drawing for each Canto of Dante’s poem. A copy of the trade publication is on order for the Library’s open shelves.

There were 12 enquiries for Special Collections.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: May 2017

British Archive for Contemporary Writing (BACW)

  • Around 40 international agents (UEA ambassadors) visited the Archives in May to hear about some highlights including the Storehouse model, the Publishing module, the Unboxed project and the Literary Festival collection.
  • At UEA’s Learning and Teaching Day the BACW held a joint workshop with the East Anglian Film Archive (EAFA) ‘Digital Heritage: Equipping Students for the cultural and creative industries’.
  • Richard Beard (writer) was interviewed by Jos Smith (Director of BACW) at UEA’s Enterprise Centre. This was part of an all-day seminar for MA Creative Writing students. Beard spoke of the writing and publishing process and the rationale for placing his papers on loan in the Archive. Richard Beard Archive.

Unboxed
Three new blog posts have been published by our LDC (Literature, Drama & Creative Writing) students:

Permission requests for forthcoming publications by users of the archives have related to the suffragettes (Kenney Papers) and to the history of climate change (G.S. Callendar Archive).

John Hill Archive
We’ve been looking at agricultural land in Haddiscoe, Norfolk and how it looked in 1961 when it used to operate as a pea vining station.

Pritchard Papers
Researchers have been interested in the journalist and architectural critic Philip Morton Shand (grandfather of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall); and the archaeologist Gordon Childe (former tenant of Lawn Road Flats).

Roger Deakin
Research has concentrated on Deakin’s income and letters of refusal from agents and publishers.

Zuckerman Archive

010

Committee on Research & Development.

Researchers have been interested in:
• The use of dogs to detect metal explosives 1955-1970.
• The International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis and international scientific cooperation during the Cold War (SZ/IIASA).
• The Committee on the Management and Control of Research and Development. This is a valuable resource documenting the early articulation of Applied Science in the UK (SZ/MR).
• The Bombing Analysis Unit of the RAF (SZ/BAU).

 

Special Collections: 13 enquiries.

Temporary disruption to UEA Archives and Special Collections during summer 2017

There will be some temporary disruption to the UEA Archives and Special Collections service, including the British Archive for Contemporary Writing (BACW), during summer 2017.

The UEA Library is undertaking a space project to create further student study spaces. The work requires Archives staff to relocate from their office on Floor 02. The adjacent Archive Reading Room will also be affected during this time.

To safeguard material:

There will be no access to archive collections between 16 June and 18 August.

There will be limited access to Special Collections items by prior arrangement.

Archive staff will be working during office hours and are able to answer queries regarding the collections.

Below are some frequently asked questions about the planned work.

If you have any concerns whatsoever, please let us know.

We regret any inconvenience caused.

Justine Mann, Archivist, British Archive for Contemporary Writing

Bridget Gillies, Archives Assistant, UEA Archives

e: archives@uea.ac.uk

t: (voicemail only available during this period) 01603 59 3483  / 01603 59 3419

FAQ

How will the work affect users of University of East Anglia Archives and Special Collections?

The Archive Reading Room will be inaccessible between 15 June and 18 August.

To safeguard collections, there will be no access to Archive material during this time.

If you have any concerns about the loss of access during this period, please contact Justine Mann justine.mann@uea.ac.uk.

Archives staff will relocate from their office to a nearby Silent Reading Room.

Our office hours will be as normal and we can answer archive queries during this time.

There will be limited and bookable access to Special Collections items (books/ pamphlets) within the nearby Silent Reading Room by prior arrangement with Archive staff who will supervise visits.

There will be one microfilm reader available within Silent Reading Room – Periodicals Rm 02.32  with a printing facility. This will be bookable by prior arrangement.

Unless advertised otherwise on our Website, access hours will be 09:30-12:30 and 13:30-16:30 as usual.

Please email archives@uea.ac.uk to make a request for Special Collections or for microfilm access and provide as much notice as possible.

If we have no existing bookings on a particular day, we will assist you whenever we can.

We apologise for the inconvenience caused during this period.

Our Website pages will contain up to date information on access:

For further information on the Library Space Project, click here.

 

 

The Library building through the years

This summer the Library is undergoing yet another makeover. Around 180 new and varied study spaces will be created, mainly on Floor 01. This has been made possible as over two miles of open-access rolling stack shelving will be introduced on Floor 02 (just alongside the Archives). Once the dust has settled and the stock re-shuffled, there’ll be more light, more colour and an improved layout on Floor 01. The Archives also stands to re-gain over 250 metres of shelving in its climate-controlled store.

UEA.S.2.25Keeping up with ever increasing student numbers and changing methods of study is an ongoing challenge for a Library which was built almost 50 years ago. The Plan was for a University which would contain three thousand students in ten years with the possibility of expansion to six thousand thereafter. In 2017 we now have over 16,000 students, all requiring to be connected to a device or screen of some sort or other.

Each of the six floors has had its turn for re-design, a splash of colour, more comfortable seating, with better access to computers and technical facilities. We’ve introduced individual and group study rooms and even a small cinema. In short, we have grown and we have improved, more than once or twice. Let’s take a look back.

Milestones:

April 1963
Architects Denys Lasdun and Partners publish a Development Plan for the University.

13 February 1968ToppingoutofUEALibBldg13Feb1968FrankThistlethwaiteCopyrighEDP
‘Topping out’ of the Library building by Frank Thistlethwaite (Vice-Chancellor).

25 October 1968
Official opening by Lord Frank (Chancellor) as Library Phase I is completed.

July 1974UEA.PHO.4.51
Completion of Library Phase II (Architects Feilden & Mawson).  The original block doubles in size to form a near square and extends southwards. The two halves join to form one seamless building and it comes as a surprise that it is by two different architects but with Denys Lasdun’s design.

How we looked in the sixties and seventies

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9 April 2001
Opening of the LaRC (Learning and Resources Centre), Floor 02.

June 2005UEA.PHO.22.3.7
Floor 0 refurbishment. The Reception and Helpdesks are amalgamated and positioned near the entrance.

8 March 2006
Official opening of the extension and Archives. The ‘extension’ on the east side transforms the rather square looking building into a dog’s leg. It offers smooth access between the old and new parts on all floors; this part of the Library is light and airy with extensive glazing and solar shading. Its cedar and stone cladding offers a break from the severe grey concrete.

The new Archives reading rooms, office and climate-controlled store (Floor 02) are opened by Rose Tremain (who later is appointed Chancellor). [Architects: Shepheard Epstein Hunter; construction by Kier Eastern].

27 October 2010
Opening of refurbished Floor 0 and the Silent Reading Room on Floor 1.

September 2012
Opening of the Silent Reading Room on Floor 02.

2014
Opening of large Postgraduate Study Rooms on Floors 2 and 3.16_326 UEA Campus -012_Dave Gutridge _The Photographic Unit_ large

June – September 2017
Refurbishment of Floors 01 and 02.

Details on the Library Space Project and the changes taking place in summer 2017.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: April 2017

A quieter month in terms of footfall in the Archives as our teaching sessions ended for the semester and most students headed off for the Easter break.

British Archive for Contemporary Writing (general)
Dr Jos Smith has been appointed as Academic Director of BACW. From 1 Sep 2017, he will gradually take over the role from Professor Chris Bigsby, who will step down in 2018.

Charlie Higson
006The listing of this collection is now available to read on-line.

‘Bollock Street’! This is the first title that we’ve been asked to retrieve from the stacks for a reader. A sketch on the Argyle Street squats which existed in Norwich in the 1980s, this unperformed piece was written by Higson and Paul Whitehouse.

Doris Lessing
One area of interest has been Lessing’s contribution to contemporary women’s literature.

Pritchard Papers
There’s been ongoing research and interest into the artists, designers and architects of the thirties, including Maxwell Fry, Marcel Breuer, Henry Moore, Ben Nicholson, John Piper and Sir Nikolaus Pevsner.

Roger Deakin
UEA and the Writers’ Centre Norwich held a celebratory symposium on 30 April to mark Deakin’s life and his contribution to conservation and nature writing. Around 80 attended the event; an afternoon of poetry, wild writing, memoirs and personal recollections. Symposium programme.

A small exhibition showing the writing process of Waterlog and Wildwood was included at the event at Dragon Hall and this has now moved to the UEA Library Foyer.
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UEA Collection
Staff and alumni have been looking at early prospectuses, congregation DVDs, and ways to further the gig archive.

Special Collections
12 enquiries.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: March 2017

Unboxed
Once again we’re grateful to our students for offering such insights into our collections. Their blog posts include ‘Men can be feminists: Lord Pethick-Lawrence writes about the suffragettes’ (Kenney Papers) and ‘Terry Pratchett on magic and realism’ (UEA Literary Festival).

Teaching
54 students and tutors attended teaching sessions this month in the Archives:

  • MA Contemporary Fiction. Doris Lessing’s Archive was the focus with particular attention on The Good Terrorist, Salman Rushdie, and Communism.
  • Publishing module for Literature, Drama & Creative Writing (LDC) PGT.
  • As part of ‘Do Something Different Week’ a seminar was run for LDC UG on the chapter outlines, draft prologues and manuscripts, of The Quickening Maze by Adam Foulds.
  • Blogging workshop. Attended by Unboxed volunteers, LDC students and Archives staff (led by Claire Hynes, Tutor in Professional Writing).

Richard Beard
The listing of this collection is now available. Beard’s latest book The Day That Went Missing (a memoir) is published this April by Harvill Secker.

Roger Deakin
BACW_RDeakin_flyer_660px_eFlyer-smallPreparations are under way for an afternoon of readings, talks and discussion to be held on 30 April ‘Roger Deakin: Exploring the Archive: Rivers and Woodlands’.

Doris Lessing

A steady interest in Lessing’s letters to John Whitehorn during the 1940s continues, in particular her work as a Hansard typist while still in her twenties, and her association with the Communist party in southern Africa.

Pritchard Papers

  • Requests have related to the architect Wells Coates (architect) and Sunspan Homes (light and airy domestic designs of the thirties); and the Lawn Road Flats’ tenants and their covert lives as Soviet spies.
  • The National Museum of Modern Art, Tokyo is currently exhibiting materials from the Pritchard Papers. ‘Improvement for Good: Marcel Breuer’s Furniture’ runs from 3rd March – 7th May, 2017 and at the Higashine City Museum, Yamagata 15th July – 24th September, 2017.

W.G. Sebald
Students from Heinz-Berggruen-Gymnasium in Berlin, Charlottenburg have submitted a guest blog post to acknowledge their memorable visit made to the Archives last summer.

UEA Literary Festival
Visitors have been watching recordings of earlier festivals including guest authors Robert Macfarlane (2008) and Richard Dawkins (2015).

UEA Collection
FT Album 61-66 Prof I P Watt Dean of English Studies 1.9.62_30.8.64We’ve been looking back at the contribution made by one of our principal founders – Ian Watt (1917-1999), Dean of English Studies at UEA. Some very relevant material was found on Watt’s short but significant time at UEA, 1962-1964. Watt was later Professor of English at the University of Stanford, Calif. [Photo: Frank Thistlethwaite Archive].

Special Collections
Eight requests.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: February 2017

Unboxed
The second blog from our ‘Unboxed’ blogging project has been posted by student volunteer Freya Turner. Our thanks to Freya for this excellent piece: ‘Tessa Hadley on uncovering memory: do we really know our past’.

Interview
Mark Cocker, nature writer, was interviewed at UEA Careers’ ‘Working with Words’ on 25 Feb. by Archivist Justine Mann.

Teaching
Teaching sessions delivered this month in the Archives drew in around 60 students. They included:

  • ‘Digital Media, Theory & Practice’. This session was repeated on the same day.  It introduced a practical digitisation project for which the Archives provided material and follow-on support.
  • ‘Writing the Wild’. Students had access to manuscripts, diaries, letters and notebooks from the collections of Roger Deakin and Mark Cocker; and watched recordings of Richard Mabey and W.G. Sebald.
  • ‘New Worlds: Science fiction and beyond’. This session was repeated over two days and focussed on the works and character of Doris Lessing, her interest in science fiction, Memoirs of a Survivor and Shikasta.

Doris Lessing Archive
The Whitehorn letters continue to generate interest – with requests relating to Lessing’s work as a Hansard typist, and an interest in her contemporaries in Southern Rhodesia.

Kenney Papers
Biographical material relating to Rowland Kenney (1882-1961) has been supplied to us by his grand-daughter. The activities of suffragette sisters Annie and Jessie Kenney are well documented, however less is known about their brother Rowland who was a British propaganda agent operating in Norway during both the First and Second World Wars. Rowland Kenney’s papers are currently held at the University of St Andrews.

Pritchard Papers
pp-16-2-1-59-eResearchers have been interested in the Pritchard family papers; Molly Pritchard’s influence on the design and ethos of the Lawn Road Flats; and artists and designers in the nineteen thirties. We also had a visit from the current resident of Molly and Jack Pritchard’s former penthouse flat at the Isokon Building.

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UEA Collection
Staff have been gleaning information on past gigs and bands; and looking back at a 1983 exhibition on the fine bindings held in a collection owned by Sir Robert Sainsbury.

Zuckerman Archive
WWII bombing reports from the RAF Bombing Analysis Unit have been consulted from this collection.

sangatte-coastal-battery-e

Sangatte coastal battery, Zuckerman Archive

Special Collections
There were 28 enquiries.

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update: January 2017

ch-keep-off

Charlie Higson’s script

This month saw the first post of the ‘Unboxed’ blogging project. Our thanks to student volunteer Andrew for his contribution. Chance Meetings: Roald Dahl, Monica Dickens and Charles Pick.

Induction of students to the project is continuing and professional blog training workshops have been arranged for later this semester.

Preparation is under way for the use of selected items from the Kenney Papers (suffragette archive) in a digital humanities practical assignment (Digital Media Theory and Practice).

Television scripts and sketches from Charlie Higson’s Archive have been used in a media studies lecture to support discussions on the meaning of culture and the forms of culture which may not get collected and preserved.

pp-9-1-5

Alvar Aalto outside Palmio Sanatorium, Finland (completed 1933). Pritchard Papers, University of East Anglia

An Art History student from Scotland visited to consult the Pritchard Papers, in particular the papers on Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. And a screenwriter is currently researching the personal lives of Molly and Jack Pritchard.

Enquiries have been received for letters to John Whitehorn written by Doris Lessing; and for letters to or from Sylvia Plath. Although we don’t hold letters from Plath we were encouraged to find related correspondence between Ted Hughes’s sister (Olwyn Hughes) and Doris Lessing.

The Zuckerman Archive has attracted television producers researching WWII bombing raids in Hull. Further enquiries have related to the British Bombing Survey Unit, and ballistics.

On a lighter note, Roger Deakin’s walk through the ancient forests of Poland is being looked at more closely by a researcher there. More can be read about his journey from Ukraine and through Poland in his book Wildwood.

Closer to home, Alan Hunter’s series of novels on Inspector George Gently has been the focus of a piece written on literature and historic houses. Hunter used Holkham Hall in Norfolk as the basis for the setting of his novel Landed Gently (1957).

Exploring the Archives: a monthly update #8: December 2016

This month our students have been looking at love letters to John Whitehorn and papers relating to feminism in Doris Lessing’s Archive; and the Kenney Papers for a dissertation on the suffragette movement.

External visitors have been looking at the iconic Lawn Road Flats in Hampstead, North London, including the resident Isobar Club and the Half Hundred (dining) Club.

We were able to assist an alumnus with a blog on the 100th anniversary of the Russian Revolution and his recollections of the public lectures held at UEA to mark the 50th anniversary in 1967.

It’s 40 years since the Sex Pistols were due to play at UEA. Television and radio interviews have taken place in the Archives to mark the anniversary of the cancelled gig which was scheduled for 3 December 1976. Eastern Daily Press article.

sz-sc-31-eThe Zuckerman Archive has received enquiries relating to WWII casualty surveys; and 1950s primate research relating to the measurements of skulls and teeth of vervet (green monkeys) in Gambia and St Kitts.

Special Collections: There were 8 enquiries.

Season’s Greetings to all our archive users.