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Workshop 1: The State of Historical Letterpress, Birmingham, 29 Sept 2017

This workshop explores the survival and use of historical printing presses and type.  It considers how and why equipment has survived, as well as the state in which it can often be found.  We are interested in what historical equipment and practices have to teach us, both about the print cultures of the past and our own today.  We also want to know who the audiences are for this material, the interests they might have, and how we might collaborate more effectively.  Bringing together a range of scholars, curators, and printers, it will be an opportunity for network participants to share experiences and best practices, and to develop new approaches to such facilities.

The workshop will at Winterbourne House, University of Birmingham.  The house, built in 1903 for the Nettlefold family and now part of the University, is carefully restored example of an arts and crafts suburban villa and garden.  Details about its print room can be found here; for directions, click here.  The workshop is open to all and attendance is free.  To register, click here.


9:30-10:00  Registration
10:00-10:10  Introduction
10:10-11:30  Session 1: Historical letterpress printing in public
 Carla Marrinan (National Print Museum, Dublin):
 '21 years of the National Print Museum'
 Lee Hale (Winterbourne Press, Winterbourne House and Garden):
 'Letterpress Production and Participation in a Heritage Setting'
 Rachel Mays (Robert Smails Printing Works, National Trust Scotland):
 '150 Years of Robert Smail’s Printing Work'
11:30-11:50  Refreshments
11:50-13:10  Session 2: Printing with historical letterpress
 Colin Clarkson (Historic Print Room, University Library, Cambridge University):
 'A secret less well kept: the Historical Printing Room, Cambridge University Library'
 Nick Loaring (The Print Project, Shipley):
 'A-Z & beyond...'
 Alexandra Franklin (Centre for the Study of the Book, Bodleian Library, Oxford):
 'Letterpress and public engagement with research'
13:10-1410  Lunch
14:10-15:30  Session 3: Historical letterpress in the museum
 Patrick Goossens (Association of European Printing Museums; Project Letter-kunde):
 'Collecting print related artifacts too preserve the true craft of printing'
 Georgina Grant (Blists Hill Victorian Town, Ironbridge Gorge Musuem):
 'Letterpress is alive and well; printing across the Gorge'
 Jo-Ann Curtis (Birmingham Museums Trust):
 'Birmingham Manufacturers Project'
15:30-15:50  Refreshments
15:50-16:50  Roundtable
16:50-17:00  Closing remarks