Praise for Successful Girlguiding Norfolk Archive Project

A £60,000 project to conserve and celebrate our unique collection of guiding memorabilia has been praised by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The Girlguiding Norfolk Archive Resource Centre (ARC) on Patteson Lodge estate grounds in  Coltishall was awarded the money in 2018 and since then has worked hard to preserve 30,000 items; it has made the collection accessible to approximately 25,000 people in creative ways, many as a result of thinking ‘outside the box’ during the pandemic. 

Around 18,000 hours of volunteer time – estimated at a value of £536,000 – went into the project which was warmly praised by Ruth Bellamy, Investment Manager for the Heritage Fund in this region.

“Your project clearly did really well in engaging volunteers, on making an impact on your collections, and the sharing your heritage,” she said. ”  Well done!”

Download the executive summary of the report here

During the project two museum professionals were employed to advise on conservation and cataloguing and to extend the reach of the ARC to schools and community organisations.

A team of young members, called the ARC Angels, was also recruited during the project to act as youth consultants and work experience was offered to students interested in museum work. Norfolk history student, Sophie Mattholie, said she was lucky to have gained work experience with the ARC.

“It has been a great chance to find what will probably be a future career,” she said. “Most other people I’ve talked to haven’t been able to get experience like this, I’m very lucky.”

County archivist Helen Green and lead volunteer for the project said future plans included gaining Museum Accreditation, developing virtual ways to share the collection and more hands-on opportunities to bring guiding history to life through camps and other events.

“We are so proud and grateful for the opportunity National Lottery players have given us to make the most of our collection,” she said. “We hope they feel we have given good value for money.”

To find out more about the ARC visit our website

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