Archive treasures being preserved by the Welsh Government and the National Manuscripts Conservation Trust (NMCT) this year include records from the internationally recognised Foyle Opera Rara Collection, held by the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, and 18th century estate surveys of the Plymouth Estate that provide insights into land ownership and use in pre-industrial south Wales, held at Glamorgan Archives.
In total four Welsh institutions will benefit from conservation funding. Successful projects also include estate records held by Powys Archives, and locomotive drawings preserved at Rhyl Miniature Railway.
These projects are funded through a partnership between the Welsh Government and the NMCT. This funding allows the conservation of important manuscripts to which access is currently restricted because of their fragile condition. Thanks to this funding, important documents that tell our national story are being made accessible to students, researchers and local users.
Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism, Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas said:
“This partnership, established in 2008 with Welsh Government support, continues to widen access to items and collections of national and international significance across Wales. I am grateful to the NMCT Trustees for their continued support in preserving our rich archival heritage.
"I am particularly pleased to see the range of material that this year’s grants will support, from estate surveys and maps, which illustrate and evidence our changing landscape, to a treasure trove of opera history, and the records of our earliest miniature railway.
Professor David McKitterick, Chairman of NMCT, added:
“We are absolutely delighted that our long term partnership with the Welsh Government is ensuring that more, important Welsh manuscripts are being conserved than ever before. Since our partnership was established just over ten years ago we have, together, invested over £340,000 in the conservation of Wales's written heritage - so much more of which is now publicly accessible thanks to our support.