A Year in Pictures 2021

As we entered 2021, we again saw ourselves being placed into lockdown, thanks to a new Covid-19 variant. This meant we were once again working from home.

January & February

We may have been working form home, but that didn’t stop us from creating plans for both 2021 and 2022. We started work with the South West Heritage Trust on their Unlocking Our Sounds Heritage project to develop a series of events to be held later in the year.

Our Librarian also completed work on the old Barnstaple Literary & Scientific Institute Minute books locating information on many of the items in our collections and the development of the Barnstaple School of Art.

Barnstaple Literary & Scientific Institute Minute Books

March & April

March saw us learn about another literary link with a blog post on Sir George Newnes as well as preparing for the annual #Archive30 social media event which took place in April when we were also able to once again re-open to the public. We also started bringing in several new collections which had to be processed.

Planning for #Archive30

May & June

As we settled back into the office again Sandi, our assistant librarian discovered the story behind a family of plant hunters, and we took part in International Archive Day.

July & August

Several fascinating books came into our library collection over the summer, several of which used our collections. We also began work in earnest to put together our first joint event for over a year.

New Books Summer 2021

We also “went on holiday” with ARA Scotland who ran an #ArchiveHoliday campaign and discovered what happened when the Bath and West show came to town in 1859.

September & October

We celebrated the Voices of Exmoor and North Devon with a joint event with the South West Heritage Trust and Devon Libraries as part of the Unlocking Our Sound Heritage project. The event also included the premier of a new film created by the Plough Youth Theatre.

Voices of Exmoor & North Devon event; 18th September 2021

As part of the celebrations, Rob Lamerton, from the local studies library wrote a lovely affectionate post about family friend, Ted Lethaby. Ted was one of the many voices from the Exmoor Oral History Archive project used as inspiration for the event.

November & December

We uncovered some of the everyday horrors we see behind the scenes as we took part in Explore Your Archives week, these included Sellotape, staples, rubber bands and paper clips!


From the horrors of what happens to old paperclips we went on to celebrate the end of another year with ARA Scotland’s #ArchiveAdventCalendar where we uncovered some more gems from our collections

Roland Collection

We also started work on a couple of exciting projects for 2022, so while we may seem a little quiet to begin with, rest assured we’ll be working hard behind the scenes so #WatchThisSpace

…Barum Athena

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