This week, as part of the Lightboxes and Lettering project that Rendezvous Projects is running, we went with our volunteer group for an introductory session at the London Metropolitan Archive. There, we had a really interesting talk and tour of the building by Sally Bevan, the Senior Archivist, telling about the materials the archive holds and some of the processes about how it gets there.
This is the original and very beautiful entrance hall, which we saw as part of the tour. Earlier, we’d been taken into the archive itself and the hugeness of the holdings. Sally talked about them in terms of metres, as in ‘500 metres linear’.
The building was originally built for a printers, Temple Press, which is why it’s so perfect for an archive of this size., having been designed to hold enormous and weighty machinery.
In the late 1970s I used to walk past the gauntlet of , on my way to ‘A’ level classes at Kingsway Princeton FE college. We used to go to the same pub that the Temple Press printers, and I remember making some sort of feminist point by insisting on being there while a stripper was doing her thing at lunchtimes and after class.