Managed digitisation


The British Library can manage your digitisation project from start to finish and help you fill gaps in your collection with our own comprehensive holdings

If your organisation is thinking about making its archives available online or you want to free up storage space, consider digitising your collections with the British Library. We offer professional, high-quality digitisation services and can provide the project management and logistics expertise to make your project go as smoothly as possible.

We are unique among most digitisation suppliers in holding a vast range of published and unpublished content ourselves. In many cases we will already have your collections on-site and may be able to fill gaps where you have damaged or lost content.

Digitising your collections with the British Library gives you:

  • Access to one of the greatest resources of research material in the world, to fill gaps in your collections
  • Secure, 24-hour storage
  • The British Library’s preservation experts on hand to give guidance
  • Comprehensive project management and logistic solutions, to suit your unique requirements
  • Stringent process control and quality management
  • Pilot projects and pricing available upon application

Contact us for a no-commitment discussion of your requirements and the services we can offer.

Our customers

We’ve helped most of the major academic publishers realise the commercial potential of their back files. We have also digitised the collections of learned societies and managed projects for government departments. So far, our studios have produced over 30 million images for our clients.

“The quality of the images was first rate … I don’t think we would have got such a good outcome with any other supplier and they would be my first choice for digitising more of our historic newspapers in the future.”
Jan Nesaratnam, Senior Librarian, Herefordshire Library Service
“We had the pleasure of working with the British Library on a project to create Emerald Backfiles. This was a large venture for us, capturing over 68,000 articles digitally to add to our online database. The project was planned thoroughly and completed to schedule in a very professional manner.”
Paul Morrell, Electronic Production Manager, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Our equipment

Your collections will be digitised using state of the art equipment. Our core range of 22 overhead table-top scanners are able to scan at up to 600 dpi optical resolution and can accommodate material sizes of up to A0. They are supplemented by a variety of specialist scanners, including scanners for microfiche, rare books and bound originals. For more modern materials, our automatic robotic book scanner or our quick scanning kiosk can be used for superior speed and price.

As part of our post-processing procedures we also use Photoshop and other Adobe software to ensure optimal image quality and colour balancing, as well as our scanner manufacturer’s bespoke software.

Our staff

We maintain the highest levels of staff training and expertise across our imaging studios in Boston Spa, Yorkshire and St Pancras, London. 

Staff at our digitisation studio in Boston Spa, are either professionally qualified to BTEC Level 4 in Digital Imaging or working towards their qualification. In St Pancras, we have a team of imaging experts working on various scanning devices who are trained to handle rare and fragile material.

Project management expertise is provided by our trained PRINCE2 practitioners and the studios are run using continuous improvement methodologies, to ensure an efficient operation that provides maximum value to our customers.

More from Imaging Services

Contact us

How to get in contact with our Imaging Services teams

Specialist imaging

We have specialist expertise in handling a range of material types and managing complex preservation requirements


All the information you need on the cost of our services


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