Harvey’s Foundry Trust has been awarded a grant of £1,967.00 from AIM and the Pilgrim Trust to undertake conservation work on a collection of papers dating from the late 1800’s.
The papers known as the Biggleston collection have been kindly donated to the centre by Ray Wise, they were found in the eaves of the Biggleston shop in Hayle, when Mr Wise renovated its roof ten years ago.
The collection consists of over 1,200 papers mainly receipts, letters and postcards (most still on their original metal bill spikes) relating to the shop. Biggleston’s has stood as a shop in the town for over 120 years; it is a landmark building and people treasure it. These papers give a fascinating and rare insight into the town during this period, the wide range of materials that could be bought and sold, and dealings between the shop and companies from around the UK and the world.
We are working with PZ Conservation C.I.C on this project, experts on the conservation of book and archive materials who are providing guidance, training, materials, conservation work and are also advising on the long term storage of the documents. We are also using this opportunity to train volunteers in paper conservation.
The papers can be viewed by the public in a number of ways, regular updates on the project through social media and our website, some of the papers will be digitised and available through our website, and some of the papers will be used as part of the new exhibition. The collection will also be available for viewing by any member of the general public who asks to see it for research purposes.
Laura Walton from the Trust said:
Finds like these are very rare for us and the documents are invaluable to help us build an understanding of the town’s history. This grant is giving us the opportunity to preserve the papers and enable them to be seen by the public for the first time.