Dorset Archives Trust, the charitable trust that supports the work of Dorset History Centre, is running a crowdfunding campaign to raise £8,000 to digitise a local photographer's collection of photos before they decay.
Weymouth based photographer Graham Herbert documented all types of Dorset life from 1950s to early 1980s.
The collection, of over 7,000 packets of photographic negatives, is a unique record of the social history of the area. Herbert captured many aspects of local life, including festivals and performances; shop displays and interiors; street scenes and every-day occurrences; and agricultural and industrial work.
The negatives are suffering from ‘vinegar syndrome’. This happens when the negatives begin to decay and give off an acidic vapour that smells much like vinegar. To try and slow the pace of the decay the negatives are stored in climate controlled strong rooms at Dorset History Centre. There is no treatment as yet that can reverse or stop this condition and without intervention to digitise the collection, it will be lost.
Some of the images have already been digitised and have been used with great success in outreach activities with older people and with groups of adults with learning disabilities.
Alongside straight donations there are also ‘rewards’ on offer that range from a set of four postcards featuring already digitised images to a VIP tour of the Dorset History Centre with the County Archivist. The fundraiser is open until 13 December at www.crowdfunder.co.uk/save-herberts-weymouth.
This is a new venture for us and we are grateful for the advice and experience shared by others in the sector prior to launch.
Dorset History Centre
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