A series of brief introductory guides to caring for your sound collections, and using them in an archival context.
Since the late 19th century, sound heritage has played a significant and growing role in framing our memory of the past. Despite this, most sound recording formats face the twin threat of degradation and the obsolescence of access technology. Recordings are held on discs, tapes and other formats for which playback equipment is no longer produced or supported by industry. Archival consensus internationally holds that we have very little time in which to digitise our audio and video material; by around 2030, the scarcity of legacy replay equipment and spare parts will render the process prohibitively expensive or impossible. For some collections, it is already too late.
As part of the Unlocking Our Sound Heritage project funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the British Library has produced a series of brief introductory guides to caring for your sound collections, and using them in an archival context. While aimed primarily at non-specialist galleries, libraries, archives and museums who hold sound recordings, many will be of use to anyone with an interest in sound recording and collecting.
Sound & Vision Reference Service
The British Library
96 Euston Road
Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7831
Sound & Vision Reference Enquiry Team