Our Very Own Home

As the work of our group has grown, it became increasingly clear that we were going to have to either establish a permanent base for the ever-growing collection of material and artefacts or the group would fold. Our capacity to store and keep track on information had reached a critical point.

A search of offices to rent proved we could not reasonably afford to go down that route - our group doesn't have a regular income stream and grants for such purposes had dried up as organisations needing funds grew. So following our success with our last lottery project, we decided to talk to the Heritage Lottery Fund and see if there was a solution. that is where the idea of a self-contained archive first began.

After a lot of planning and negotiation we were offered a site at the local auction rooms and so we could begin. After being awarded the £6,800 needed to buy a container, things soon began to happen.

 

  

Late one November night the fully lined and insulated 20foot container was delivered. It took a total of 4 mins to get it off the trailer and into position. A trip to see how Sheriff Hutton History Group had gone about organising their own archive store was invaluable - many thanks for the support! 

With the container settled the next step was to order shelving, an absolute necessity for an archive! With a carpet laid, the container began to feel a lot more like an office than a storage unit.

Phase Two

Once the shelving was in place we moved forward with obtaining all the other types of storage units we needed. A map chest was a must to store the growing collection of maps, both ordinance survey and those created for sales catalogues. When the opportunity of having a Kirkbymoorside pine shop counter donated (albeit in need of restoration and repair) we were thrilled! The shop counter came from one  the old outfitters shops in town - fragments of bills were found in one of the very damp bottom drawers! We are still investigating and waiting to see if we can piece the fragments together!

Phase Three

With the bulk of the fixtures in place we now needed to ensure any objects and materials stored within were a) dry and b) visible. The interior of a container may have been ply-lined but it was very dark and the temperature in January was not good! So we employed a local electrician to connect the archive into an electricity supply, install background heating and suitable lighting. All of this means we are ready to begin the next task which is to begin to fill it with information.

Anyone wanting to be involved with this, please get in touch. We began the work on Tuesday 16th February in the NYCC Church House Library. All were welcome - no skills needed other than an interest in local history or Kirkbymoorside. There were three days of sessions from 11am until 4pm. Thanks to those who came along and saw what work we are doing and what we hope to achieve. Keep an eye out for further sessions soon.

 

Phase Four

After months of organisation the KHG was finally ready to open its doors to visitors at the first ever Open Day for the Kirkbymoorside Archives. We had two groups of children down from the local primary school to see the work they did on the 1730 survey of Kirbymoorside. Group members had been into school to work alongside the children, plotting houses and making models of key buildings, all of which were on display at the Open Days.

 

As well as the map and models the children viewed the archives and left with a better understanding of why history and local history is important.

There was alos a steady stream of visitors to see the work completed so far and members were able to help with several queries. Members from the Appleton, Ryedale and Rosedale history groups came to see the records held which related to their areas of interest and the prospects of joint projects discussed!

Thanks to the National Lottery we have been able to create a purpose-built home, which will enable the group to expand and develop it's collection for years to come. Keep an eye on the calendar for future events!