Surveys are a useful tool when identifying priorities for conservation and help to ensure that collections are stored safely. Arthur offers advice on preventive conservation and environmental monitoring.
Case Study The Shakespeare Memorial Library, Birmingham. In spring 2019 Arthur conducted a conservation survey of the Library of Birmingham’s Shakespeare Memorial Library as part of the Everything to Everyone project. The Shakespeare collection was founded in 1868 by Social reformer George Dawson; it boasts items in 93 languages, and was the first great public Shakespeare Library in the world.
‘Understanding Bindings’ A training day for librarians, archivists, volunteers, and anyone working with historic collections who would like to understand more about the books that they handle. Leaving aside fancy decoration and the printed word, Arthur focuses on the structural features of a series of bindings. In particular, he examines the materials and techniques used in their construction, and the various reasons why they might degrade. Attendees also learn how to describe and safely handle bindings, with an opportunity to look at some historic bindings first hand. Recent customers have included Chatsworth House and the British Library, and the day can be tailored to suit the staff and collections of individual institutions.