Archive Project Meeting – 26th January 2017

Austin 7 Clubs Association Archive project, Meeting No.11 Thursday, January 26th 10:30am Triumph Sports 6 Club, 36 Main St, Lubenham, Market Harborough LE16 9TF

Those present: Andy Lowe – Association Chairman Chris Garner – Association Vice-chair and PWA7C Nick Beck – Scottish and Bristol A7 Clubs Phil Baildon – Association Archivist Ruairidh Dunford – Scottish Austin 7 Club (on Skype) Hugh Barnes – Cambridge Austin 7 Club
  1. Apologies for absence
Dave Martin – Assistant Archivist & PWA7C Nick Turley – PWA7C Chris Charles – Association WebMaster Fenella Leigh – Cambridge Austin 7 Club
  1. Minutes of meeting 10
Were deemed correct
  1. Progress since last meeting
  1. PB,CG to have arranged to meet (or preferably have met) with owners of collection of archive materials
Both visits will take place in the next couple of weeks (and definitely before the next Team meeting)
  1. HB Paint project ongoing work
HB continues to work with the A10DC – providing them with details of the cards we have had access to and negotiating whether we could borrow theirs for photographing (depends on NT’s availability) The set consists of some 48 cards.
  1. PB to follow up with contact for Stanley Edge Military material
The gentleman who will visit is waiting for the weather to improve before he travels to view the collection
  1. CG – Clayton DeWandre materials long term home
CG took the collection with him and will transport to Lincoln when convenient
  1. NT further interview candidates identified (CG to follow up with Austin Apprentices, AL to follow up with Austin Village)
Ian Dunford to be next interview candidate. CG is in contact with Ex-Apprentices organisation. AL has written to 2 local Birmingham papers and placed an advert in the Austin Sports and Social Club. PB will contact Barney Sharatt, author of Men and Motors of the Austin – the inside story of Longbridge
  1. HB to create photo catalogue spreadsheet ‘pro-forma’ for trial
  2. HB to organise a ‘how to’ document for cataloguing photos
  3. HB to discuss trial photo publication with CC
See item 5 in minutes that covers Progress items f, g and h
  1. Scanner
Through the extraordinary generosity of an Austin 7 owner (who wishes to remain anonymous) and good fortune, we have been donated by an exactly the type of scanner we had been recommended to acquire by both Hampshire County Record (HCC) office and Faye McLoed, Archivist at Jaguar LandRover. Currently, this is at HB’s house where he is learning the complexities of the ‘Professional’ settings on the software used to drive it. Very high quality images should be created using it, hopefully reducing our reliance on HCC and therefore, Project costs. There will still be specific artefacts that will require the more professional workmanship of HCC, but certainly, things like our photograph collection it is envisaged, we will be able to digitise using it. There was a discussion as to whether we should keep the automatic sheet feeder that came with it and it was decided that we should as there maybe time in the future when we would want to do volume scanning of (say) Club Magazines etc.. HB mentioned that we would need to acquire certain other accessories enabling us to scan 35mm slides etc, and he was authorised to do this. (Subsequent to the meeting, HB realised that it was not only a holder that was needed to slot the slides into, but that we would need to acquire a slide scanner attachment that replaces the lid of the scanner with a mechanism for illuminating the slides from above when being scanned. HB is researching this)
  1. Photo Collection
With the scanner now acquired, we can set to digitising our photo collection. PB (aided by DM) was asked to select 50 photos of the highest priority for publishing by the next meeting. HB will scan those. HB will work with other members of the Team to set up a ‘distributed’ group that will have access to the images to catalogue them, provide descriptions and to publish them on the Archive Web site.
  1. Archive Web update
  1. Potential for use of existing drawing images
The existing set of Engineering Drawing images were reviewed. It was decided that these could be published, after a suitable catalogue entry was created for them all. It may be necessary to re-image some of them, depending on the standard of the original scans, but any images published can be described as will be replaced with better quality images as time permits. HB will discuss this with FL as her next cataloguing task.
  1. Reordering of Index Cards
RD has provided David Howe (DH) with printed images of a sample set of cards that will allow him to physically juggle them until he has come up with the best order possible. At that point, DH will provide RD with the new order details, ask CC to create a trial page in the new order for the Team’s review and comment.
  1. Oral Histories
It was decided that the next person to interview would be Ian Dunford, who could talk about the early days of the Association (and no doubt, his extensive history in the Austin 7 world in general) It should also be noted that we have been granted permission to publish the EC Gordon England interview that has recently been tracked down. Thanks go to Coventry University ‘Curve’ Project, who hold the original and the perseverance of Austin 7 owners Marcus Ling, Ian Williams and  Bryan Norfolk who all played a part in tracking down the interview and transcript. There was also a suggestion that we contact Tom Newsome, who drove an Austin 7 from Melbourne in Cambridgeshire to Melbourne in Australia if he might do something. CG will follow up.
  1. Budget
As reported in previous meetings, our un-committed funds are in the region of £3500. We still await the bill for the latest HCC digitisation of the Show Brochures. Expenditure at Leicestershire County Council recently invoiced is to be asplit between restoration of existing artefacts (not to come from Digitisation Project Funds) and scanning of drawings requested by PB.. No other expenditure has been made by the Project since the last meeting.
  1. Publicity
  1. Open Day
Now confirmed as Sunday April 2nd. There was a discussion regarding the details of the display. It was agreed that we would not replicate the last display but create a different layout with other artefacts on display. PB was asked to come up with a plan, as last time, to show how things would be laid out. IT was also suggested that we play some films. After a discussion about the possibility of the Assn. acquiring a digital Projector, PB said he had been given one the Archive could use. CG will retrieve the Trophies from secure storage. There was also a comment about the Bert Hadley Trophies currently on loan to Donnington at some point being returned to the Archive. PB will follow up with Geoff Roe to confirm details.
  1. Newsletter
RD was thanked for editing the most recent Project newsletter, recently distributed. RD thanked all those who had made a contribution to the newsletter that had made its creation a straightforward task. RD asked that HB contact all Clubs and Registers asking them to forward the Newsletter on to their membership to extend coverage. This should be a specific request in all future newsletters.
  1. NECClassic Car show Awards
HB reported that he had been alerted to these awards by CC (Webmaster) and that he had submitted a nomination on the Project’s behalf in the category ‘Web Site of the Year’ We will hear after February 6th if we have been shortlisted. Even if we get that far, then the publicity will be helpful.
  1. AOB
  1. Russell Curtis collection
RD raised the topic of Russel Curtis, an A7 owner in Australia has a remarkable collection of A7 materials that he has built up over the years and is prepared to share with the Archive. His daughter has the ability to create high quality scans at her place of work or, Russell will be visiting the UK this summer and may be able to bring some of his collection with him. PB was asked to go through the list of the Collection and pick out any items of particular interest we currently do not hold.
  1. Recording of Collection
HB made the point that recording anything in a Word document was limiting and did not provide for any form of manipulation or ease of transfer into the main catalogue. He stressed the point that *any* recording of details should be done using an Excel Spreadsheet
  1. Brochure retrieval from HCC
It was mentioned that the Show Brochure collection was still at HCC and need retrieving. CG said he would try and arrange to do that when he next travelled in that direction.
  1. Gladys de Havilland photo album
The existing images of the GDH photo album were reviewed and deemed perfectly satisfactory for speedy publication. The collection has also been added to in recent years with a comprehensive collection of contemporary news cuttings. CG agreed to take on the task of reviewing the images and cuttings and coming up with a suitable ‘framework’ in which to publish them.
  1. Austin ‘Charges’ books
NB asked whether the archive held a collection of ‘Charges for Repair’ books. PB replied that we did, but that they were not considered a priority for collecting or digitising at this time.
  1. Thanks for donation
A discussion took place on the formal thanks to be given to people donating items to the collection. AL stated he had written to Mike Stewart who had recently donated his complete collection. This lead on to a discussion about what we should be able to do with duplicates of existing items within the Collection. It was agreed that our approach would be to have the authority to dispose of duplicates either by swap or by sale and that any funds so raised would be ring fenced to the Archive for acquisition of further materials. It was agreed that we should produce a policy document defining the approach and that it should be published in the next Grey Mag. A suitable precis of this should also be included in any communication with potential donors so it is always made completely clear as to our approach.
  1. Stanley Edge TV film
CG reported that he is still on the track of the Stanley Edge TV film for publication on the Archive site but that tracking down and speaking to the right person is proving elusive. He has resorted to writing a letter to the contact he has been given..
  1. Date of next meeting
Friday, March 3rd. Lubenham, 10:30 am. Note change of usual day of the week. Task list for next Meeting.
  1. PB and CG *must* have visited the holders of personal Archive Collections
  2. HB to speak to NT about possibility of further photography of paint cards
  3. PB to talk to Barney Sharatt to explore Oral History possibility
  4. HB Scanner ‘understanding’
  5. PB, DM to identify and extract 50 top priority photos for scanning
  6. HB et Al to define ‘distributed’ cataloguing process for photos
  7. CC to have built prototype Archive pages for photo display
  8. HB to talk with FL regarding Engineering Drawing catalogue
  9. HB to discuss prototype Archive pages for drawing display
  10. CG to talk with Tom Newsome re Oral History possibility
  11. PB to design layout for Open Day to include new displays
  12. PB to test out digital projector for the running of films on the day
  13. PB to check with Geoff Roe on return arrangements for Trophies held at Donnington
  14. HB to request all Clubs to distribute the Archive Newsletter to their Members
  15. PB to review Russell Curtis collection and (through RD) request items to be brought over (if possible) or items to be scanned locally and provided electronically *As Soon as Possible please*
  16. HB to work with FL and CC to determine Excel pro-forms for record keeping
  17. CG to collect Brochures from HCC
  18. CG to design a way of displaying the GDH collection on dedicated Archive web pages
  19. Donation and duplicate Policy Document and statement for Grey Mag. NB – although this was discussed in some detail, no-one was charged with producing this. HB to discuss with AL