Exciting experimental project funded by The National Archives

In December we were delighted to receive the news that our application for a grant of £3,260 from The National Archives had been successful. This funding comes from a new fund called the Archive Testbed Fund which gives archives the freedom to try out something new and potentially transform the ways that archives across the UK work.

Our project will test a portable fundraising and information unit. The unit will contain an information panel about the Trust, a promotional film that will bring the collections to life and an inset contactless giving point to encourage donations. As far as we know, using film in combination with contactless technology is a completely new approach for archives. We hope that it will allow us to take archives out to locations where it might be difficult to take precious original material and we're excited to be pioneers testing out whether this approach engages people and encourages them to support the Mountain Heritage Trust's work.

As a small charity, fundraising is extremely important for the Mountain Heritage Trust. While we have a brilliant grant fundraising Trustee in Liz Sutton and we are extremely grateful for financial support from the British Mountaineering Council with some of our staffing costs, raising funds for everyday running costs and match funding our grant bids has been challenging. We're hoping to raise awareness about the work of the Trust with this project and also raise funds. If it is successful, it will mean that we can more easily continue preserving and sharing Britain's incredible stories from the mountains and rock faces of the world.

As part of the grant we'll be sharing our experiences with the wider archive sector and will keep you updated on progress via our social media channels.

Work on the film is about to begin (we're working with the amazing Land and Sky Media) and we are aiming to get the fundraising unit out on the road in the spring initially for mountain events like Sheffield Adventure Film Festival, Keswick Mountain Festival, Kendal Mountain Festival, BMC area meets and the BMC AGM.

In September we'll be presenting our findings about the success or otherwise (we hope success!) of this project and the lessons we learned along the way to the wider archives sector at the annual Archives and Records Association conference.

Cover images: Chris Craggs Collection

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