Naming it Inspirational Archives, staff from the Royal Commission have come up with a novel twist for this year’s Explore Your Archives campaign. They have planned a day where visitors are welcome to come and discover the many unique collections of the National Monuments Record of Wales archives, and then gain inspiration to create something meaningful of their own.

On Wednesday, 18 November, the Royal Commission is offering a day of creative workshops and demonstrations on 3D modelling, reconstruction drawing, animations, photography, digital resources (LiDAR, GIS), and much more. In addition there will be exciting talks by the Royal Commission’s aerial investigator, Dr Toby Driver, on Patterns from the Past: The Wonders of the Aerial Archive and by the Royal Commission’s photographer, Iain Wright, on Through the Photographer’s Lens. A selection of work by the Mad Mountain Stitchers, a group of highly-creative textile artists, inspired by the unique collections in the National Monuments Record of Wales, will also be on display, including their wonderful five-foot tall wall-hanging of Big Pit , Blaenavon. The artists will also be on hand to talk about their work, and the materials and techniques used in their creation.

Throughout the afternoon and evening, visitors will have the opportunity to explore the vast range of the Royal Commission’s collections of photographs, maps, plans, drawings, and other material in the National Monuments Record of Wales.

Visitors will be welcome to participate in workshops, working with students from Aberystwyth University’s School of Art to think creatively about using the archives to produce poetry, short stories, works of art, textiles, models, sculpture, knitting, cakes—or anything else you feel inspired to produce.

For further information, please contact the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, Plas Crug, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion SY23 1NJ, telephone: 01970 621200, email:
All are welcome. All events are free.

Above: One of over one million photographic records held in the Royal Commission’s archives: an early photograph c.1870 of Old College, Aberystwyth, then incorporating Castle House (demolished 1897), a marine villa designed by John Nash and completed in 1794. It was the first explicitly Picturesque house in Britain.

© Crown copyright: Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales (RCAHMW)



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