The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #139552   Message #3201512
Posted By: johnadams
04-Aug-11 - 06:09 AM
Thread Name: Vaughan Williams library gets MLA status
Subject: Vaughan Williams library gets MLA status
It's been a long and difficult struggle to achieve this but ............

The Vaughan Williams Memorial Library (VWML), England's folk music and dance
archive, has been awarded Designated status by the Museums, Libraries and
Archives Council (MLA).

The VWML is a one stop shop for anybody interested in the folk arts - 'the
most important concentration of material on traditional song, dance and
music in the country' (A Dictionary of English Folklore) - and contains
books, pamphlets, periodicals, press cuttings, broadsides, paintings,
photographs, slides, artefacts, records, reel-to-reel tapes, phonograph
cylinders, videos, cine films, compact discs, audio cassettes and more.

The MLA Designation Scheme identifies the pre-eminent collections of
national and international importance held in England's non-national
museums, libraries and archives, based on their quality and significance.
These inspiring collections represent a vital part of our national cultural

Designated status for the VWML brings it into an elite group which includes
the Fitzwilliam Museum collections at the University of Cambridge, Special
Collections at the Bodleian Library (Oxford), Courtauld Institute Gallery,
Museum of Science and Industry (Manchester) and Wordsworth Trust.

Katy Spicer, Chief Executive of the English Folk Dance and Song Society,
commented: *"We are absolutely thrilled with this recognition of the
incomparable nature of the library and archive collections held at Cecil
Sharp House, and of the hard work done by library staff and volunteers to
maintain and enhance our unique heritage asset. Designated status will
enable us to continue expanding access to the library, and to work closely
with other institutions in the UK and internationally to share expertise and
widen our collective knowledge of the many and varied cultural traditions of
England and English-speaking nations.**"*

Alongside the VWML, two other organisations have this week been awarded
Designated status: the collections, library and archive of the Royal Academy
of Arts, and the entire holdings of Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Archive

Commenting on the new additions, Sir Andrew Motion, MLA Chair and Arts
Council England Board Observer, said: "We are delighted to welcome these
important organisations into a scheme that is playing an increasingly vital
role in helping the public to identify the very best collections across the
country. Designation is only awarded to the most compelling cases, and we
warmly congratulate these successful applicants on their achievement".