A small team of NAS volunteers is working with Southampton University students to catalogue a significant collection and make the archive available for everyone. Over the years, a significant collection of plans, digital scans and photographs of small boats has been created, based on the large collection of vernacular boats that used to be in Exeter Maritime Museum. Now that the collection has been auctioned and distributed around the world, these plans, digital files and photos are an important archival resource both of the unique boats themselves, but also as an iconic collection of maritime heritage. 

We've assembled a small team of volunteers who have an interest in small boats, plans and archiving, and together with Southampton University, we're provide them with training and support where needed, so that they can create an archive that makes the plans and photos accessible to the public. 

The tasks that we are doing include:

  • Cataloguing photos and paper plans
  • Preparing documents for scanning
  • Creating inked versions of pencil boat plans
  • Cross referencing spreadsheets with boat plan and documentary data
  • First-aid conservation
  • Photo re-naming
  • Anything else that pops up and needs doing!

Our base of operations is the Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the Avenue Campus of Southampton University SO17 1BF and the finished archive will be deposited at the University Archive in the Hartley Library.

The archive team meets on the last Wednesday of the month from midday until they've had enough! If this sounds interesting to you, then please contact [email protected] to get involved.

There's also going to be remote cataloguing opportunities for people who can't make it to Southampton. If you're interested in this, please contact [email protected] and we'll keep you informed