Agenda and minutes

Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Joint Archives Committee
Thursday, 14th November, 2019 10.30 am

Venue: City Central Library, Hanley

Contact: Jonathan Lindop  Email: jonathan.lindop@staffordshire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

10.

Declarations of Interest in accordance with Standing Order 16

Minutes:

There were no Declarations of Interest made.

11.

Minutes of the meeting held on 13 June 2019 pdf icon PDF 143 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 13 June 2019 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman.

12.

Predicted Outturn 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 204 KB

Joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)  giving details of the predicted outturn for the Joint Archives Service for 2019/20 (Schedule 1 to the signed minutes).

 

Members noted that to date, the Joint Archives budget net spend was £400,313 or 63.2% of the total budget for 2019/20. At the year-end the budget was forecast to be overspent by £177,269 owing to greater than anticipated spends on (i) Staffing (£179,943); (ii) Transport (£1,376) and; (iii) Supplies and Services (£11,466). However, this situation was predicted to be offset by an over recovery of income by £15,516.

 

In addition, they noted that (i) the balance in the General Reserve was currently £294,830 following receipt of a £1,364 grant from the New Burdens Fund for the transfer of public records under the ‘20 Year Rule’; (ii) the balance in the Archive Acquisition Reserve was currently £57,542 (iii) that £10,300 grant aid received from the Art Fund Futures Fund towards the cost of the Doulton Project Archivist Post had been transferred to the City Council’s General Reserve following the Postholders resignation and; (iv) the use of £30,000 from the General Reserve to install environmental controls in the basement of City Central Library had been delayed until the next financial year.

 

During her presentation of the report, the Deputy Chief Executive sought approval from the Committee to use £4,000 from the General Reserve as match funding for the Development Phase of the Staffordshire History Centre Project following the successful Round One bid.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That the use of £4,000 from the General Reserve as match funding for the Staffordshire History Centre project be approved.

 

 

 

 

13.

Review of Fees and Charges pdf icon PDF 114 KB

Joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered a joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and the Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) regarding a review of the Joint Archive Service’s fees and charges for 2020/21.

 

Members noted that the Archive Service’s fees and charges were reviewed on an annual basis to ensure that they reflected changes in demand and costs of providing the various services available in terms of staff time, equipment and travelling. In addition, account was taken of the prevailing economic climate and the availability of the on-line service offer.

 

For 2020/21 it was proposed that the charges levied for (i) the supply of photocopies; (ii) talks; (iii) visits and (iv) permission to publish were left unaltered owing to their inclusion in 2019/20’s review. However, the Research Fee and associated charges eg Staff Facilitation Fee and Photographic Fee had been increased and a revised full schedule of the proposed new charges was circulated at the meeting for Members’ consideration.

 

During his presentation of the report Director of Housing and Community Services highlighted that income from Research and Associated Fees had been declining in recent years owing to the increasing availability of archive material on-line.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That the revised schedule of fees and charges be approved for introduction by the Joint Archive Service from 1 April 2020.

14.

Staffordshire History Centre Project pdf icon PDF 151 KB

Joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)

Minutes:

The Committee considered a joint report by the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Housing and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Families and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) updating them on the development of the Staffordshire History Centre Project.

 

The Archive and Heritage Service had submitted a bid to the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) on 8 May 2019 for Phase One grant funding towards the development of a Staffordshire History Centre comprising (i) accommodation for records; (ii) new community exhibition space and; (iii) modern search rooms and strong rooms to provide storage for an additional 25 years of future collections.

 

Following consideration by the NLHF, the Service was notified on 4 September 2019 that they had been awarded a grant of £36,000 which could be used towards the following, approved, purposes:-

 

·       High visibility acknowledgement of the NLHF and lottery players on site, online and in all other activities;

·       Proactive measures to promote inclusiveness, remove barriers to access and reach new and diverse audiences through the delivery of this project;

·       A review of the building design works;

·       Hosting pilot sessions with schools, universities and colleges to test learning material;

·       Finalising the lease, land transfer and Partnership Agreement and;

·       Increasing existing staff hours to enable cataloguing of William Salt Library Collections and re-package for future removal. 

 

A start-up meeting between the Project Team and representatives of NLHF was held on 21 October 2019 at which the Team received positive feedback. In addition, they were provided with advice and guidance on completion of the necessary work which was due to commence at the end of November 2019. Further advice and support was to be provided by an external consultant.

 

Members noted that during this Phase the various Plans produced in support of the previous bid would be reviewed and refreshed and further efforts made to secure additional match funding. They also noted the costs for the Development Phase were as follows:-

 

Cost Element

Amount

£

Contracted/Consultants

14,000

Staff

18,000

Other

3,000

Legal

4,000

Contingency

1,000

Total (Phase One)

40,000

Grant Award

36,000

Match Funding (from General Reserve)

4,000

 

During her presentation of the report, the Deputy Chief Executive highlighted that there were no major changes proposed to the design of the building. Also, Dr. Alix Slator of Alix Slater Consultancy and Training had been appointed to provide mentoring services in support of the project and initial meetings with him had been helpful. She re-iterated that further efforts would be made to seek additional match funding so that the total grant request during Phase Two could be minimised.

 

With regard to the timetable set out in the report, the Deputy Chief Executive clarified that Permission to Start had been completed in November 2019 and not 2020 as stated. Whilst every effort would be made to ensure the success of the Project, in the event the Staffordshire History Centre failed to attract Phase Two funding, contingency plans had been developed in order to provide some resilience.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.

15.

Conservation of Shelley Pottery Archives pdf icon PDF 188 KB

Joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)  

Minutes:

The Committee considered a joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) regarding donations received from (i) the family of Mr. R. Renolds; (ii) The Shelley Group (UK); (iii) National Shelley China Club (USA) and; (iv) The Australasian Shelley Collectors Club Inc towards the conservation/repair/restoration of the 35 Shelley Potteries Ltd Pattern Books included in the Minton Archive.

 

Shelley Potteries had produced a wide variety of pottery in both fine china and earthenware from the early part of the 20th Century through to its take-over by Allied English Potteries in 1966. Its products were sought after by collectors and had a wide following throughout the world. The Pattern Books provided essential information of interest to collectors/historians for the identification and authentication of pieces produced by the factory. However, all the books were, to some degree, in poor condition ranging from missing spines to complete disintegration of their structures. Therefore, the three collectors’ organisations together with the family of the late Mr. R Reynolds (the last Decorating Manager of the Company prior to its takeover) had made donations enabling all the books to be conserved/repaired/restored, as follows:-

 

Donor

Amount

£

The Reynold’s Family

900

The Shelley Group (UK)

 

National Shelley China Club (USA)

 

Australasian Shelley Collectors Club Inc

 

Total

10,572

       

During the discussion which ensued, Members expressed their appreciation on behalf of the two Authorities for the above donations. In response to a request from the Committee, the Director of Housing and Community Services undertook to draft letters of thanks to the individual donors, for signature by the Chairman and Vice-Chairman prior to despatch.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That letters of thanks be sent to the Family of Mr. R. Reynolds and organisations concerned, on behalf the Joint Archive Service, for their kind and generous donations enabling the 36 former Shelley Potteries Pattern Books included in the Minton Archive to be conserved, repaired and restored, as necessary.

16.

Standard Text for Archive Service Policies pdf icon PDF 187 KB

Joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council)

Minutes:

The Committee considered a joint report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director for Families and Communities (Staffordshire County Council) and Director of Housing and Community Services (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) regarding the adoption of standard introductory text for all Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Joint Archive Policies.

 

The Joint Archive Service were awarded Accredited Service status under The National Archives’ (NA) Scheme in 2017. However, during the assessment various actions were highlighted in order to make further improvements including a light touch review of the Services’ Policies to ensure consistent branding, balance and cross referencing. In addition, the Conservation Management Plan developed for the Staffordshire History Centre Project also recommended the alignment of key policies across the Archive, Museum and William Salt Library Services.

 

Of the nineteen policies across the above-mentioned services, ten were included within the Committee’s Terms of Reference. The remaining nine were either the responsibility of the Chief Officer under Scheme of Delegation arrangements or the William Salt Library Trust. Accordingly, new standard introductory text had been developed for those Policies within the Committee’s purview to explain the composition, vision and values of the Service, as follows:-

 

“Staffordshire Archives and Heritage comprises Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archive Service, the William Salt Library and the County Museum Service. The Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archive Service is an Accredited Archive Service administered and funded by Staffordshire County Council and Stoke on Trent City Council under a joint agreement. The William Salt Library is a charitable library delivered by the Archive Service on behalf of the Trustees. The County Museum is a provisionally Accredited Museum funded by Staffordshire County Council and works in partnership with museums across the County and region to provide museum development support.

 

The Archive Service manages and delivers services via Staffordshire Record Office, Stoke on Trent City Archives and the William Salt Library. A significant proportion of the County Museum Service’s collection is on long term loan and public display at Shugborough Estate. The Archive Service provides services for Staffordshire County Council in relation to its legal documents and archives. 

 

The vision is:

Connecting people to the collected stories and heritage of Staffordshire, Stoke on Trent and beyond.

 

The mission is:

To connect people to the memories of Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent, by engaging them with the collections we develop and preserve for current and future generations”.

 

 

In the Discussion which ensued, the Committee requested that the reference to ‘Shugborough Estate’ in the above-mentioned text should be preceded by ‘National Trust’s’ in order to clarify the current position regarding the ownership and management of the estate.

 

In reply to a question from the Member representative of the City Council, the Deputy Chief Executive undertook to include relevant Organisations’ logos on the various Policies, as necessary. She also informed Members that Staffordshire County Council’s Head of Archives and Heritage Service had recently been appointed to NA’s Accreditation Panel.

 

RESOLVED – (a) That the report be received and noted.

 

(b) That subject to the inclusion of ‘National  ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.

17.

Date of next meeting - Thursday 6 February 2020 at 10.30 am County Record Office, Stafford

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the date, time and venue of their next meeting be noted.