Digital archives ‘R’us: Swindon Viewpoint and Swindon Local collection
I’m in danger of getting evangelical on this topic but hey, I think it’s worth the risk. 🙂
I first came across the Swindon flickr collection a couple of years ago when I did some volunteer tutor support with the library service’s computer courses. I was honestly dumbfounded (and trust me, I’m not easily struck dumb! ) and staggered by what this collection contains. It’s so much more than photographs. There are letters, newspaper articles, programmes, tickets – the list is endless – all scanned and categorized to help you navigate through it. But please don’t take my word for it – take a look.
Swindon Viewpoint on the other hand is relatively new to me. I was recently alerted to its existence and blogged about it here. So why am I mentioning it again? Well because I’ve now registered with their site so that I can have a good old root around in its archives and I’d urge you to do the same – with both this and the Swindon flckr collection. Okay – I can hear you asking ‘Why should I bother with all that?’ Well, in Swindon Viewpoint’s own words – here’s why:
‘Swindon Viewpoint is your focal point for the visual life and times of our area. You can come here to find out what’s happening now, but also what our town once looked like and how it has developed, what its people have thought and cared about; and the diversity of lifestyles and entertainments of the past as well as the present. You can use it to teach children our history, improve your own understanding, help older folk reminisce, or you can get up to date with events of the moment, or current debates, – and join in with these.’
So if it’s local history or family history that floats your boat then these guys are really worth their weight in gold. But of course you don’t have to have a specific purpose in mind to make the effort to register with and use both these services. If you are Swindon born and bred or even if, like me, you are an ‘incomer’ but with an interest in the town – you might just want a good old wander down memory lane. And what’s wrong with that? Wander away – that’s what I say.
As well as the websites mentioned above, both services also have related Facebook pages, so at the very least why don’t you give them both a ‘Like’ and then you can easily get a flavour of what they are up to on your timeline. After all – YOLO! 🙂