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Conservation Unit

Our role is to ensure the city’s written heritage is preserved for present and future generations.

Archive and library material is susceptible to damage and deterioration due to poor storage, inappropriate packaging and handling. The task of the Conservator and Preservation Assistant is to preserve and conserve the city collections, so they can be safely consulted for research purposes.

The Unit works on the full range of archive material (from the 13th century to the present day) including the repair of fragile and damaged paper and parchment documents, maps and plans, seals and photographs.

We also carry out the conservation and binding of printed and manuscript volumes.

As the only local authority Conservation Unit in the region we provide a full conservation and advisory service to the archive and library services of South Yorkshire.

The Unit can advise on the storage, condition and conservation of archives held by individuals and external institutions/organisations.

Find out about our full range of Conservation services.


Preservation involves the use of passive non-interventionist measures for the protection of a document. It does not physically alter the fabric of the item by the use of chemicals or repair techniques. 

For example, preservation measures can involve the  use of appropriate packaging materials such as acid free boxes, papers and tissues.


Conservation involves the use of physical measures to prevent the further deterioration of archival documents.

Whilst we undertake minimum intervention to ensure and prolong the longevity of an item, we do use appropriate conservation materials and chemicals to repair documents (to the recognised standard BS 4971 2002). 

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Archives and Local Studies

  • Modified: Oct 23, 2014 11:06:53 AM