BBC Archives manages one of the world’s largest multimedia archives. Our mission is to preserve content so that it can be re-used.
Our vision is to have an open archive, fit for a digital world. The BBC Archive Centre in Perivale, West London, houses most of the BBC Archive collections across 8 vaults and 60 miles of shelving containing 15 million assets. Other stores are held across London, in Caversham near Reading and at other sites around the UK. Around 200 staff work in BBC Archives; their aim is to manage the diverse range of collections and support research, reuse and access to BBC material by BBC staff and others who need it whilst they are making new content for the BBC. The earliest material dates back to 1890.
The BBC Archive is not directly accessible by the public, but BBC programmes can be researched at the British Film Institute or The British Library. Details can be found on the BBC Archives website*. Additionally, there is a wide range of resources that are accessible to the public online and a search for Vaughan Williams* produces almost 300 hits. Composer of the Week, a long running series on Radio Three has an extensive archive of programmes exploring the lives and music of composers all available online. There are around twenty episodes on the Discovering Vaughan Williams website*.