Tasmania’s memory moves into the future

Media Release

12 December 2022

The Tasmanian Archives are beginning a new era at Geilston Bay following the move of over 14 kilometres of archival items to a purpose-built new repository, housing Tasmania’s documentary heritage for generations to come.

The building, which provides capacity of up to 28 linear kilometres of shelving, was custom designed with state-of-the-art facilities including contemporary climate control systems, security and fire alert systems, a cool store for film and colour photography, and a dedicated room to store magnetic media.

New Tasmanian Archives building

“By storing the archives securely – thanks to the provision of funds for both the new archive facility and the digitisation of the entire Tasmanian film and sound collection – we are ensuring the documentary heritage of Tasmania’s government and its people is visible and accessible now and in future,” said Ross Latham, Director Collections and State Archivist at Libraries Tasmania.

In a huge achievement for the Tasmanian Archives, over 5 000 film and magnetic tape items in the audio-visual collection are now digitised, rehoused and restored ahead of time, thanks to the methodical work of a small team of archivists, digital services, and conservation staff at Libraries Tasmania.

“It is really exciting, a big milestone for the project, which took about a year and a half to get through,” said Karin Haveman, Manager Government Archives and Preservation, Libraries Tasmania.

“There’s film that the archivists had never seen. It brings a lot of richness to the Tasmanian people.”

Digitised items will be searchable on the Libraries Tasmania catalogue from 2023 onwards, and accessible by people in Tasmania and around the world.

Libraries Tasmania received project funding from the Tasmanian Government in 2020 so that digitisation of the entire film and magnetic media collection held by the Tasmanian Archives can occur by 2025 at the very latest, due to the risk of tape degradation and technological obsolescence.

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