I am a Community Engagement and Outreach trainee, based jointly with Glasgow City Archives and The Glasgow School of Art archives. I studied English and Comparative Literature at the University of Glasgow and lived in Berlin for several years, where I worked as an editor, translator, and LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender) community organiser.
Two years ago I returned to Glasgow to study Community Learning and Development. During this time I carried out a practice placement at the Glasgow Women’s Library, where I discovered the importance of social and political history to community work. Through designing and facilitating several community-based projects such as political literacy workshops and reminiscence sessions with local women, I have been inspired to explore alternative methods of documenting the lives and experiences of communities that are underrepresented in ‘traditional’ archives.
My role has involved developing outreach activities and increasing the social media presence of the service to raise its public profile and increase awareness of our collections. My research has ranged from Belgian refugees during WW1 to the Scottish Women’s Hospitals and ‘Red Clydeside’.
I have also had the opportunity to pursue my interest in LGBT history by designing a workshop for LGBT History Month. In the future, I hope to encourage more synergy between the heritage and community sectors. I’m particularly interested in working with LGBT and BME (Black and Minority Ethnic) communities to help develop collections that reflect the diversity of lived experience in contemporary Scotland.
About Glasgow City Archives
Glasgow City Achives serves to collect, preserve and provide access to the historical records for the city. As well as the official records from Glasgow City Council, the collections have expanded to include records from private individuals, families and organisations based in or around Glasgow. They include: architectural plans dating from 1885 (from tenements to council schemes, to designs from Charles Rennie Mackintosh); records from over 300 schools; over a million poor relief applications; kirk session records; personal and estate records; business records from Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co Ltd, MacFarlane Engineering Co Ltd and Mitchells, Johnston & Co solicitors, among others.
We are the largest local authority archive in Scotland, with around 30,000 linear metres of records. As well as dealing with remote enquiries from all over the world, the archivists supervise a busy public searchroom, host various events and contribute to social media.
About The Glasgow School of Art Archives
The Glasgow School of Art's archives and collections are an outstanding resource for the study of art, design, architecture and art education.
They comprise of a wide range of material from the School’s institutional archives to artworks and architectural drawings, textile pieces, plaster casts, photographs and furniture. Our holdings also include a large number of items by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, giving us one of the largest Mackintosh collection held in public ownership.