Volunteer as an Archivist
Since the Massey Shaw Education Trust was formed, it has accumulated a sizeable collection of archive material comprising documents, photographs, books, medals, badges and models, which have been mainly donated by relatives of personnel who had served aboard the FB “Massey Shaw” or on other London Fire Brigade fireboats. Moreover, the archives also include information on fireboats and marine firefighting more generally. In 2009 a programme of cataloguing all these items was initiated, the aim being to eventually obtain accreditation as an independent museum.
Originally, the archive material was stored at the LFB Museum in Southwark, although with the temporary closure of the LFB Museum, the MS archives are currently stored at the Essex Fire Museum in Grays, Thurrock. Currently there are three archivists working through the backlog of archives, cataloguing in compliance with Museum Association standards, under the supervision of a member of the Society who is a qualified and experienced museum professional.
Archiving requires a steady and methodical approach, working at home, with regular meetings to review progress but is certainly interesting given the variety of material the archivist’s process.