Dumfries needs 6 kms of shelf space for archives

There are hundreds of thousands of artifacts and books being held in three different locations in Dumfries. Dumfries and Galloway Council says it needs 6 kms of shelf space and wants to apply for a lottery grant to find £5 million for a new centre.

Potential new archive and study centre for Dumfries

Six kilometres of shelf space is urgently needed to house hundreds of thousands of documents, some dating back nearly 550 years.

Dumfries has run out of space to hold its huge collection of archive material and the local council wants the people of the town to help secure a £5 million lottery fund to build a new archive and local studies centre.

Matthew Taylor reports:

Priceless manuscripts could be lost forever

Graham Roberts, archivist
Dumfries and Galloway Archivist Graham Roberts says some older manuscripts are disintigrating Credit: ITV Border

The chief archivist for Dumfries and Galloway warns that unless a new purpose built facility is found, many of the priceless documents could be damaged or lost forever.

Graham Roberts says that the oldest documents, dating to 1452 need to be kept in special conditions or the paper will disintegrate.

At the minute, the hundreds of thousands of individual items are being kept in three different locations.

The Archive Centre on Burns Street, the Ewart Library and a storage area in part of the former T C Farries building at Lochside are now full and are not considered suitable for storage.

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