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Capacity building and advocacy

Good preservation practices are central to the ability to access collections and content over the long-term. Through the Preservation Advisory Centre, we provide information, services, training and tools to help those responsible for library and archive collections achieve accessible, usable, sustainable collections.

Our Preservation Advisory Centre provides guidance and support on physical and digital preservation issues to libraries and archives. Acting as a hub for preservation knowledge on collection care issues, the Centre shares the experience of the British Library and other organisations through published information, seminars, training, discussion sessions and. partnership working.

Information and services available through our Preservation Advisory Centre include:

  • Preservation management services

Services include the Preservation Assessment Survey for carrying out a statistical analysis of preservation needs, and the Preservation Health Check for a review of current preservation measures against best practice.

  • Workshops and events

Ranging from the introductory session ‘Essential Preservation’ to sessions on Salvage and Preservation Policies, our one-day workshops draw on experienced collection care professionals and British Library staff to provide focused training to small groups.

  • Guidance booklets

Our series of freely available booklets provides introductory guidance on a range of preservation topics

  • Electronic resources

Our free ‘Caring for collections’ resource is designed as an introduction to collection care issues for people working and volunteering in libraries. The resources is accompanied by a workbook and can be used at your own pace. It covers how books deteriorate and get damaged and what you can do to minimise that damage.

  • Collection Care FAQs

Answers to frequently asked questions such as ‘how should I store books?’ are available on our web pages.

  • Reports and guides

The work that we do to advance preservation practice is recorded through our reports, guides, conference presentations and papers which address both physical and digital issues.

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