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SKILLSET announces new archives skills programme

18 March 2009

Skillset is leading a new archives skills programme, to ensure that there are skilled professionals to preserve, manage and provide access to the rich and diverse moving image archives in the UK.

This programme was developed following on from the Strategy for UK Screen Heritage, ‘Screen Heritage UK’, to be delivered by the British Film Institute (BFI), and funded through a £25million investment from the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

The archives sector demands a range of skills, as its workforce has to deal with materials ranging from old film that needs to be viewed on almost obsolete machinery, through to contemporary digital content. Furthermore, there is an aging workforce, a lack of new entrants, and a lack of information surrounding the sector in terms of career opportunities.

Skillset is looking to support organisations with national reach and profile, to deliver and manage training in the areas identified with the UK audio visual archive sector as having a skill shortage.

The Archive Skills – Continuing Professional Development funding programme is designed to provide opportunities for existing professionals working with audio visual archives to update their skills in priority areas of need.

The Archive Skills – Structured New Entrants Training funding programme aims to provide the audio visual archive industry with a minimum of seven new entrants with the right level of skills and knowledge to successfully pursue a career in the UK audio visual industry and keep pace with changing technologies.

Neil Peplow, Skillset’s Director of Film, said: “This is an exciting new strand of activity for Skillset. We have a unique and rich screen heritage in the UK, and it is essential that we do all that we can to ensure that we have the necessary resources and skills to preserve it. We have increasingly sophisticated methods to preserve our archives, and we need to make sure that the people working in this sector are equipped to keep pace with changing technologies.”

Skillset is looking for applications to deliver training that is managed by or in partnership with industry, and is innovative and provides value for money.

Applications are now open. Deadline for applications for the New Entrants training funding programme is 12.00 noon, 3rd April.

The deadline for applications for the Continuing Professional Development programme is 26th June 2009, 12 noon. Applications are welcomed at any point until then. Decisions are made on a rolling basis and take 8 weeks.

For information and to apply to either of the Archive Skills funding programmes go to the Skillset website:
www.skillset.org/funding/organisations/apply_FSF

This programme has been developed as part of Skillset’s Skills Strategy for the Archive Sector, and is supported by the Skillset Film Skills Fund and the UK Film Council Digital Film Archive Fund.

For case studies of people working in the archives sector please visit our website here: www.skillset.org/skillset/archives/roles

For further press information please contact Hannah Wilkinson at Organic Marketing on Hannah.wilkinson@organic-marketing.co.uk or 0207 927 6591