About the Spare Rib Digitisation Project

The Spare Rib digitisation project was started in 2013 and completed in 2015. Originally it consisted of two digital resources, the British Library’s curated Spare Rib website and the full run of searchable Spare Rib magazine content available for free via the Jisc journal archive platform. In January 2021 the Jisc resource was removed in order to comply with copyright law following the UK leaving the EU. For a more detailed explanation about why Jisc resource was removed please see the British Library's Social Sciences blog.

The British Library’s curated Spare Rib website features over 20 contextual articles and 300 examples of content selected from the magazine for anyone interested in discovering more about the history of this iconic magazine.

Special thanks to our Advisory Board, Marsha Rowe, Sue O’Sullivan, Rose Ades and Ruthie Petrie and to volunteer and part-time project worker Louise Kimpton-Nye.

Important information for researchers 

The entire run of physical copies of Spare Rib can be consulted in the British Library Reading Rooms and other libraries around the UK.

Spare Rib remains a very rich digital resource, and we will reinstate works where permission is granted in future.  

If you are a Spare Rib contributor please read below.

Seeking contributors

The British Library would like to offer researchers the most complete version of the digital Spare Rib website, and to reinstate material which has been redacted wherever possible.

We appeal for anyone who has written, photographed or created any content for Spare Rib magazine who has not been in contact with us yet to come forward and confirm whether they give permission for their work to be made available on the site by emailing copyright@bl.uk

If any Spare Rib contributor or a third party objects to the inclusion of their work now or at any point in the future, or wishes to make their content live but with restrictions, we can anonymise, make alterations or remove the material. In this event, please contact: noticeandtakedown@bl.uk.

Material from the online Spare Rib magazine is made available as low resolution scanned pages, and images, articles and other materials cannot be downloaded individually.

The British Library is very grateful to the many contributors who have given permission for their material to be made available for this project.

Find out more about the background of the Spare Rib Digitisation Project, its successes, and its challenges.

Usage terms

The usage terms for material on the Spare Rib site differs according to its individual copyright status. Researchers should refer to the related caption for each image, article or other item on the Spare Rib to find out how it can be used. All usage is non-commercial.

If you have any queries about how to use material on the Spare Rib site please contact copyright@bl.uk