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10 May 2019

Introducing the Trust’s Honorary Archives Advisor

Written by Ian Riches
Documents from the St Kilda archives
Documents from the ‘Bute Box’ – an invaluable collection of books, periodicals, letters, diaries, journals and other material relating to St Kilda
We’re delighted to welcome Dr Alison Rosie as the Trust’s first Honorary Archives Advisor. The Trust has a team of external advisors on subjects that reflect and complement the breadth of our collections and interiors.

Our honorary advisors provide valuable specialist knowledge, helping us to protect and promote the material culture in our care for the enjoyment of everyone.

Alison’s main role will be to provide guidance and advice on all aspects of the Trust’s archives, including our corporate archive and collections of historic documents relating to our properties.

Dr Alison Rosie, the Trust’s new Honorary Archives Advisor
Dr Alison Rosie, the Trust’s new Honorary Archives Advisor

A native of Caithness, Alison studied medieval history at Edinburgh University before completing a Diploma in Archive Administration at the University of Wales, Aberystwyth in 1983. That same year she returned to Edinburgh University to pursue a PhD on court culture at three princely courts in the 15th century, which took her to various archives in France and Italy.

She has worked at the National Records of Scotland since 1986 in a variety of roles but most of her career has been spent in the National Register of Archives for Scotland. This was set up after the Second World War to locate and survey historical papers held in private hands in Scotland and to provide support and advice to owners on issues relating to their care and preservation.

This has meant working with a wide range of people all over the country, from archivists to owners of estates, businesses, community heritage groups and societies, as well as individuals with small collections of interesting documents.

One of her first tasks in post was cataloguing the papers of sculptor Hew Lorimer, now held at Kellie Castle. And one of her most fascinating discoveries in the archives relates to another National Trust for Scotland property, namely the earliest census of the inhabitants of St Kilda dating from 1764.

Ian Riches, the Trust’s Archivist, said, ‘I’m thrilled that Alison has agreed to take up the role of the Trust’s Honorary Archives Advisor. One of the first tasks I was involved in was also the Hew Lorimer archive at Kellie Castle and I got to know Alison well during the course of that project. Since then, Alison has been a great help to me professionally, always happy to help out with any archive-related question I have, and so I am delighted she has agreed to join us.’

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