Friday, 20 January 2012

Scotland's future

I have just catalogued the Scotland’s constitutional future command paper. This consultation paper discusses how to deliver a referendum that is legal, fair and decisive. It sets out the UK Government’s view on the issues in the referendum process which needs to be addressed and offers proposals on how to address them.
(image from

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Bygone Britain

I was dealing with an enquiry yesterday and I came across these seven fascinating books from the Central Office of Information. They are entitled Bygone Britain 1900-1970, and each concentrate on one topic: in the news, at play, at home, on the move, on holiday, childhood and at work.
These books have a preface by Sir Harry Secombe and contain a mixture of illustrations and articles from newspapers and magazines. They explore the vast changes that took place through the first 70 years of the 20th Century, through the serious, and the trivial stories of that period.
In the In the News book, there are wonderful photographs and articles. There is a picture of Dr Crippen as he walks down the gangway of the Montrose with his mistress Ethel Le Neve (she had been travelling disguised as a boy). After a five day trial at the Old Bailey, Crippen was found guilty and hanged on 8 October 1910.
There are pictures of Captain Scott and his ship (Terra Nova), and Mr Meares and Captain Oates cooking food for the dogs in May 1911. From the Daily Mirror 1913 there is an article with the tape message which told London the terrible news of the disaster to the Scott expedition.
There are photographs, cartoons and newspaper articles of Suffragettes. There are articles about the war years, an article from the Daily Herald 1953 when Everest was conquered and loads more.
These books are fascinating to look at to see what was happening in the various decades.
More information about the NLS mountaineering and polar collections here.