Introductions:

Hello and welcome to the newsletter! As a general introduction, we thought it might be helpful to run through a few things FAQ style in order to clarify the scope and purpose of the newsletter, as well as the areas of the University on which it focuses.

a large reception desk. the sign says: centre for research collections

[NOTE: This information pertains to both the new VOiCE newsletter and the blog that you’re currently reading! Each month, all newsletter content will be posted here, as well as any extra bits and pieces that we couldn’t fit.

The best way to keep up to date is by signing up to the newsletter here, which will send it straight to your inbox. You can follow this blog too by hitting the “follow” button at the bottom of this page; and be sure to check our VOiCE social media accounts to see content posted by us here at the newsletter team!]

Whilst the emphasis here is on the overarching service of the CRC, in future issues we’ll be looking at specific areas of the service, so watch this space to find out more! Without further delay…

What is the CRC? 

The Centre for Research Collections (CRC) is made up of the University’s Special Collections and Museums, including rare books, manuscripts, archives, art and historical musical instruments. It encompasses everything relating to the University’s unique and significant collections, including management and access. 

What does the CRC do? 

Fundamentally, the purpose of the service is to preserve, promote and provide access to the University’s collections. Activities that contribute to this mission include assisting with enquiries, conservation, academic and community engagement, acquisitions, digital imaging, collaborative projects, cataloguing and licensing, exhibitions, research, support and training.  

What types of collections are held by the CRC? 

At an overarching level, the University’s Collections fall into the categories of rare books and manuscripts, archives, art, digital archives and preservation, the musical instrument collection, the Lothian Health Service Archive, and images produced by the Digital Imaging Unit. More information about each of these can be found here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/crc/collections 

Where is the CRC? 

As part of the Library and University Collections area of the University’s Information Services branch, the CRC is located on the 6th floor of the University of Edinburgh Main Library.  

Who can access the CRC’s services? 

Usually, staff, students, researchers and members of the public can use the collections held by the CRC. If you are not a member of the University with existing access to the Library, you can normally register as a reference reader. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and resulting limitations surrounding access, new membership is currently being limited. Updated information on joining the Library can be found here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/using-library/join-the-library/members-public 

In what other ways has COVID-19 impacted the CRC? 

The CRC has also introduced additional restrictions during this time. Details regarding visitation can be found here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/cultural-heritage-collections/crc 

Where can I find more information relating to the CRC? 

Firstly, the website is regularly updated and hosts a vast amount of information. It can be found here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/cultural-heritage-collections/crc

Secondly, the service has a range of social media accounts, including Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, details of which can be found here: https://www.ed.ac.uk/information-services/library-museum-gallery/crc/content-for-reuse/crc-on-social-media.

 Additionally, the Library and University Collections Blog provides insights into collections, projects, services and exhibitions. This can be found here: http://libraryblogs.is.ed.ac.uk/index/.

Finally, (and most importantly) our hope is that this newsletter (and blog!) will provide a space for communication relating to the operation of the CRC, its relevance, projects, updates and services, so stay tuned! 

Written by Catherine Alexander

Author: VOiCE

UoE Collections VOiCE (Volunteers in Collections Engagement) run a monthly newsletter, podcast and blog about the different collections, people and museums at the University of Edinburgh.

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