The Durrell Collection

Back in March we were delighted to be offered a wonderful collection of 500 lithographic trade cards and magazine inserts by a private collector. When Alistair Moir our Archive Collections Manager went to view the collection, he was astounded by its size and quality. Following his visit he said: “The majority of the items in the collection are Victorian, however it also contains Edwardian and later examples up to the 1930s. Many of the items are wonderful examples of the lithographic process being used to create early colour advertising media, and this quantity and quality of inserts and cards are rarely available together.” 

Considering the rarity and importance of the collection, we felt it was vital to try to acquire it, so that we could preserve, catalogue and digitise it, in order for it to be made available for public research and study for generations to come. We therefore put together a project plan and a bid to National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Following the success of this bid, we were delighted to be awarded a grant of £5,900 towards the project and the acquisition of the collection which arrived here in June. You can see some of the wonderful items here:

 Over the next year, the collection will be rehoused into acid free enclosures by our staff and volunteers and then catalogued and digitised. The resulting digitised images will be uploaded onto our online catalogue for public viewing, and a selection will also be turned into an exhibition for display in public and academic settings. 

We would like to thank the National Lottery Heritage Fund for the grant which has enabled us to acquire and preserve this wonderful collection. 

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