Report to Heritage Lottery Fund
Report No 6
Issue 99/4 ICT Report
Issue 99/5 Communications.
A system of escalating “nags” to be made by SCAN to HLF was agreed.
Issues Not Resolved
Issue 99/3 Cashflow
This remains unsolved, currently awaiting response from HLF.
New Issue 99/6
Delays in appointing staff.
While the appointment of curatorial staff is proceeding smoothly there are delays with the appointments of the remainder of the staff.
The appointment of Roberta Ciochi as a member of the project (due to begin on 13 September) was nullified by her subsequent appointment to the NAS conservation post vacated by Peter Dickson. Recruiting procedures for another conservator are already in hand, but conservation of the testaments will inevitably be slowed down in the immediate future by the lack of the third team member.
A serious delay has been caused by the need (under the existing personnel rules) for these posts to be reviewed by the Scottish Executive Efficiency Unit. Their review has still not been received.
Administrative support post
This too has been caught up in the Scottish Executive personnel system.
Top Level Finding Aids
Dr Borthwick made two preliminary visits to participating archives: to Falkirk Council Archives on 18 August and to Angus Archives on 30 August. These visits were designed as learning exercises to establish what sort of problems might occur when more formal inspection visits are undertaken during the life of the project: difficulties in interpreting finding aids, in carrying out the SCAN work in situ or in arranging the work at a time convenient for both sides. A visit was also made to Glasgow University Archives on 31 August to discuss briefly name authorities and Encoded Archival Description. A member of staff of the Archives has developed a template to allow EAD tags to be automatically inserted when an archival description is being written, which works as a macro in Word, which may be useful for SCAN. Dr Borthwick participated in the round of informal introductions to the work of SCAN available to those being interviewed in the curatorial recruitment exercise for NAS/SCAN. In the absence of the Project Administrator, still to be appointed, Dr Borthwick undertook the role of Conference Organiser for the EAD Conference to be held on 24-25 September.
Special Archive Services Project
Joanna Baird worked on a glossary of useful Scottish words for inclusion on the Scottish Archive Network prototype web-site. Joanna also created a draft of the new Scottish Archive Network leaflet and submitted it to a design company who later provided a quote for SCAN stationery. Joanna visited the National Library of Scotland on the 16 and 20 August both to discuss their web-site and also to view their digital camera set-up. Joanna Baird joined Dr Borthwick on his two preliminary visits to participating archives: to Falkirk Council Archives on 18 August and to Angus Archives on 30 August. These visits were useful in drafting a surveying sheet that could be used for future visits to participant archives. The initial results and conclusions drawn from these visits are being compiled into a draft report for submission to the SCAN board for comments and suggestions. A visit was also made to the National Railway Museum in York on 26 August to discuss plans for an exhibition based on images provided by the NRM and documents from the National Archives of Scotland. Joanna Baird also participated in the round of informal introductions to the work of SCAN available to those being interviewed in the curatorial recruitment exercise for NAS/SCAN.
Hazel Anderson worked on the St Andrews commissariot data base, where conversion from the original index had caused problems. She also compiled a list of occupations and designations from the index for the SCAN Testaments web-site. With the help of Rob Mildren and Joanna Baird she compiled a PowerPoint presentation on digital imaging, which she gave to senior NAS staff on 31 August.
Her monthly liaison meeting with NAS conservation and search room staff included discussions on paginating the testaments registers and support equipment for volumes during digital capture.
The St Andrews testaments registers (CC20/4 & 7) were withdrawn from public use and are now undergoing conservation in accordance with the proposals recorded in the audit trail database. No problems have been reported by the search rooms relating to withdrawal of these records, and the new reader/printers for use with the testaments microfilm are functioning well.
On 2 August Dagmar Hinz joined Peter Dickson on the SCAN conservation team. Their current conservation work includes strengthening fragile pages in the older testament registers and dealing with problems of unstable inks.
It was agreed at the first Project Board meeting on 11 August that that the first throughput reports would be made available for the following Project Board meeting on 1 October 1999.
At the end of August payments of £87,155.55 had been received. Invoices to the value of £18,451.68 were submitted for drawdown in August.
Total Staff Employed at 31 August 1999
1, Dagmar Hinz, conservator
No procurement during the reporting period.
No of Participating Archives at month end
Changes since last report
Statistics on Use of Network Facilities
Nothing to report
Nothing to report
The minutes of the Project Board which met on 11 August are included with this report.
16 September 1999