International Women’s Day 2019

To celebrate #IWD2019, in collaboration with the DMU’s Equality and Diversity Team, we have created a display to acknowledge the invaluable contributions made by female staff and students at DMU and its predecessors through their work and commitment to various campaigns. As well as acknowledging the work of individuals, the display recognises the achievements of the institution in promoting equality of opportunity in professional development for staff and learning for students but also its historical contribution to gender imparity.

Foregrounding DMU’s female narrative, we support the call for change in line with the United Nations Sustainability Development Goal 5 – Gender Equality to recognise the work and contributions made by women in the private and public sphere.

The exhibition will be on display in the Campus Centre from today 8th until 15th March 2019.

Think Equal, Build Smart, Innovate for Change

Look out for a follow-up post from our Frontrunner Melissa next week explaining her archival research experience in creating the exhibition.

Happy International Women’s Day everyone !!!

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#WorldBookDay 2019

Special Collections looks after a range of rare books and journals as well as our archive and object holdings. Did you know we have a small number of early printed books, dating from 1474 to 1799?

The subject matter of the books bears no relevance to anything taught at DMU or its predecessors – subjects like theology and classics were not our specialisms! But we did have a vibrant Printing Trades course which included subjects like bookbinding and printing. We believe that the books were purchased to be studied as objects rather than for their content. Some of them are in poor condition, which allows us to have an insight into their method of production and construction.

For more information about the collection, please see our catalogue here:

Happy #WorldBookDay !


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Special Collections catalogues

A reminder that you will find our catalogues here:

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Stroud Cornock Remembered

Earlier this week, on the 26th of February, Professor Stroud Cornock passed away. Having worked for both the Leicester College of Art and Leicester Polytechnic, we felt we should share some of his achievements from his time at DMU’s predecessors.

Stroud Cornock (left), with fellow CAS members Clive Richards, Ernest Edmonds and Tony Pritchett. Photograph Catherine Mason.

Stroud was an accomplished artist and researcher and wrote several papers, one of which we hold in our collections: ‘Forms of Knowing in the Study of Fine Arts’. The article interrogates the difference between the study of the visual arts and the study of the verbal fields.

His role and some of the projects he was involved in as a professor at the institution are also detailed in various annual reports, including a paper he delivered to ERASMUS, in 1987, on visiting art schools in Holland, France and Germany which resulted in Leicester Polytechnic becoming one of the participating British art schools. If you would like to learn more about Stroud or his works click here for the obituary from his friends over at the Computer Arts Society.

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149 Years of DMU

Classes at the Leicester School of Art started on 1st March 1870 – 149 years ago!

Have you ever wondered how the School of Art became De Montfort University? This chart should help:

Special Collections recently launched an appeal for former staff and students to get in touch with their memories or archive collections ahead of the landmark 150th anniversary next year. We’ve had some wonderful memories:

“The Fletcher Building, Floor 9. Scary paternoster. Always misbehaving and stranding folk in the basement. Or up above the ceiling. You’d hear them calling for help. See just their lower legs or upturned faces. Nah. Nothing doing till the janitor got there.”

(Memory of a student of History of Art, 1985)

We’ve also had a range of items donated to the archive collections, including gig tickets:


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Archives Appeal – Visit from Helen Dunn

As part of our appeal for former staff and students of DMU and predecessors to share their memories with us, we’ve recently hosted former lecturer in knitwear Helen Dunn. Helen studied at Leicester Polytechnic and returned a few years later to take up a teaching post.

It was wonderful to have Helen look through some materials from the archive with us. She remembered so many of her students and was able to explain the set-up of the courses, how they changed over time and what was required of the students, particularly on the BA Hons Fashion Design (Knitwear). It was especially interesting to hear about connections with industry and how many students had the opportunity to design for big-name fashion retail companies.

If you have any memories or archive materials you would like to share please get in touch!

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FIS Skiing World Championships

The FIS Skiing World Championships are currently underway and we have already had some amazing performances from the British athletes. James Woods has walked away with a gold medal in the Men’s Freeski Slopestyle category and Charlotte Bankes has secured a silver medal in the Women’s Snowboard Cross. To celebrate we thought we’d showcase some of the fantastic photographs from the Ski Club GB Collection:

Here we have Tom Kronthaler, a member of the Alf Engen Ski School, demonstrating his ski skills in Alta powder.

Mike Parkes

An unknown racer reaches the halfway point as they cut through the snow toward the finish.

David Freeth doing a somersault

An unknown snowboarder launches into the air for the perfect shot.

If you would like to see more of our Ski club collection and what else it has to offer, then please feel free to contact us to organise a viewing.


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New Collection : Papers of Andrew Logan, artist

Special Collections is delighted to have acquired a collection relating to the life and work of artist Andrew Logan. To see the description and box list, please go to our catalogues:

Andrew Logan was born in 1945 and studied at the Oxford School of Architecture, graduating in 1970 and moving to London to begin his artistic practice. Logan’s social circle was an inspiration for film-maker Derek Jarman, while his studios hosted the Valentine’s Day Party, organised by Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood, at which the Sex Pistols came to media attention. Logan’s work can be seen in a variety of museums and galleries internationally although the purpose-built Andrew Logan Museum of Sculpture, at Berriew in Wales, now houses much of his sculpture and painting. A retrospective of Logan’s work was held at the Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, in 1991.

In 1972 Logan founded the Alternative Miss World event. According to an article in Accent Magazine, March 2017: “In the early 1970s, the artist Andrew Logan had an idea for a party. It would not be about beauty, it would be about transformation. The Alternative Miss World would allow anyone to enter: men and women on equal footing: racial parity in a pre-cosmopolitan London; sexuality set free in a million guises. And everyone would be judged on the same criteria as the dogs at Crufts: poise, personality and originality.

Since the first event in Andrew’s flat in Hackney, in 1972, the Alternative Miss World has set the stage for some of the world’s most creative spirits to gather — with past guests, hosts and competitors including everyone from Derek Jarman, David Hockney and Zandra Rhodes to Grayson Perry, Divine, Leigh Bowery and the stars of the Rocky Horror Picture Show.” From:

If you are interested in the collection feel free to pop into Special Collections (Kimberlin 00.21, open Tue-Fri 10-5) where we will be happy to show you the materials.

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Digital Detox 2019

From 16th – 21st January 2019 as a part of the #HealthyDMU campaign we will be closing all our social media channels in support of the #Digital Detox to promote an awareness of the impact of unrestrained social media use on mental wellbeing. For more info on the campaign and a DMU campus wellbeing schedule click here

Take this opportunity to be like Nelly doing a spot of bird watching: ‘Glad are the robins up in the trees, having a good time swayed by the breeze.’ Not a phone in sight!
























As our DMUVC says, this is about recalibrating our relationship with social media rather than giving it up altogether.

Enjoy and see you Tuesday,


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Come and work with us!

Come and join our team!

We’ve secured a Wellcome Trust Research Resources Grant to catalogue an exciting set of collections relating to sports history including skiing, boxing, football and the Special Olympics!

If you have any questions or want to discuss the role please contact me on, with the caveat that with the holidays I may not respond immediately, but will aim to do so in good time before the application deadline.

Assistant Archivist (Cataloguing)

Reference: D-60540821-02

Faculty/Directorate: Library & Learning Services


Salary Info: Grade E, £ 27,025 – £ 33,199


Contract Type: Fixed Term (26 months), Full-time


Advert Closing Date: 07 January 2019

Interview date: 16 January 2019


To act as cataloguer for the ‘Unboxing the boxer: cataloguing papers relating to sport at De Montfort University Special Collections’ project funded by a Wellcome Trust Research Resources Award.

-Assist the Special Collections Manager in accordance with the objectives,policies and procedures of Special Collections.

-Produce ISAD(G) compliant catalogue descriptions of collections included in the project scope, including relevant background research, arrangement, and making the catalogues available online with appropriate indexing.

-Ensure that any sensitive material is catalogued in compliance with relevant legal or data protection requirements.

-Undertake preservation tasks ensuring that collections are handled, packaged and stored according to best practice and the requirements of PD:5454.

-Promote the project both within and beyond the institution, including delivery of displays, talks and newsletter or social media content.

-Take on any other duties that might be required in the team.

Ideal Candidate

Candidates will have or be able to demonstrate:

-A first degree in a relevant subject; post-graduate qualification in archive studies or demonstrate significant progress towards gaining said qualification or demonstrate significant work experience in archives roles is essential

-Experience of working with library or archive cataloguing and collection management systems

-Understanding of best practice and standards in cataloguing of archives and their care

-Commitment to team working to deliver a high quality service

-Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

-Experience of using archive cataloguing software is desirable but not essential, Special Collections uses Epexio.

To apply:


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