It was a busy morning for Pen Y Bryn pupils on a recent visit to West Glamorgan Archives. These archives hold the ‘Longfields collection’ so there was a lot to research and discover about the association.
Outside the weather was dismal, raining hard with a gusty wind coming in from the sea, but inside the archives a warm welcome was waiting for everyone from Katie and Anne-Marie! Pupils learned how the archives hold important documents, photographs and other items to preserve them and share them as people researched their past. They discovered how documents are protected when in storage and how they are handled once requested by researchers.
There are a lot of records in the archives so pupils learnt how to find things in the catalogue and discovered the ‘Pen Y Bryn collection’. Armed with the document references it was time to discover the strongroom where all the records are kept.
As you can see, we were privileged to see behind the scenes at the archive and this is just a fraction of the records that are held there.
It was time to test the system and see if pupils could find what they were looking for!
Once they had double checked the detail in order to find their documents they had to move the shelves. It could have been impossible to do this as the combined weight of the documents on each shelf made the unit an extremely heavy structure. However, it was made easy as each unit had a mechanism which could be turned to move it so the records were found.
Back in the search room there was time to look at some of the records from the Longfields collection as well as those from Pen Y Bryn. Pupils looked at old photographs from Longfields as well as some more recent ones with Catherine Zeta Jones. They were able to browse through a selection of Year Books from the association and a file of press cuttings.