EGM to agree future of the LI archive
Since 2009 several groups of members have been exploring options and considering the best way forward for the archive, some of which has been kept accessible at the Garden Museum in Lambeth, while the rest is held in closed storage. In 2011 Council established the Heritage Assets Working Group which has been looking at various partnership proposals aimed at enabling the archive to flourish as a growing resource.
Having considered several different options, the Heritage Assets Working Group has determined that the best possible arrangement is for the Landscape Institute to enter into an agreement with the Museum of English Rural Life (MERL) at the University of Reading. Under the proposed agreement, the LI will make a conditional gift of the existing archive collection, on terms which prevent MERL from disposing of it without first offering it back to the LI.
As the archive continues to grow, some new material will be accepted by MERL, but where other repositories are more appropriate, or born-digital or other specialist material is offered, such material may be physically housed elsewhere. MERL will serve as the virtual hub of a growing national landscape archive and it is hoped that a friends group of interested members and others will be set up to provide additional oversight and support for the institute’s archive into the future.
This proposal has been considered by the Landscape Institute’s council and by the board of trustees, and has been supported unanimously by both bodies, in principle. The board and council consider that the proposed partnership with MERL offers many advantages to the Landscape Institute, and now wish to make detailed arrangements for the management of the collections and their future use. However no agreement can be reached with MERL until LI members have agreed at a general meeting to the principle that the collections should be gifted to them.
Full details are available here