UK Web Archive blog

01 August 2012

Diamond Jubilee Collection live

We are pleased to announce that our new web collection about the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee is now live. This collection represents an important historical record of online resources which is hoped will provide a lasting legacy of the event and fulfil our aim to prioritise selection of websites that feature political, cultural, social and economic events of national importance.  

The collection, comprising over 130 titles, was initiated in late 2011 by the British Library in collaboration with the Royal Archives and the Institute of Historical Research. Content has been selected by subject specialists from a variety of sources including the Twittervane tool developed by the British Library which enables curators to identify sites frequently shared on social media relevant to specified search terms. Websites were also selected by members of the public who submitted nominations on the UK Web Archive’s online nomination form.

Archiving of websites commenced in January 2012 with a focused period of high-frequency and intensity crawls in the weeks directly before and after the Jubilee weekend on June 2nd – 5th. All harvested websites were checked for quality and completeness before submission to the archive. We will continue to collect websites until December 2012 in order to capture analysis and debate on the issues around the Jubilee.

The aim of the collection was to cover the event as comprehensively as possible and to reflect a multiplicity of strands and themes including official events, the economic impact, public sentiment and political and constitutional debate. Staff at the Royal Household nominated sites of official interest such as the website of the British Monarchy and the official website of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Websites of official events initiated by Buckingham Palace have been archived including the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Beacons, the Big Lunch and the BBC Concert at Buckingham Palace.

The Jubilee inspired local, unofficial celebrations such as street parties and other community based events and a selection of their websites have been captured, for example Newry Drama Festival, the Horsted Keyes Diamond Jubilee Organising Committee and Wetherby’s Diamond Jubilee Website.

Beginning in March 2012, The Queen, accompanied by The Duke of Edinburgh, conducted a series of royal tours throughout the UK to mark the Diamond Jubilee year. We have captured samples of local press coverage to cover Her Majesty’s regional visits. See for example the Queen’s visit to Ebbw Vale, Gwent and the Blog by photographer Chris Seddon capturing the Queens Diamond Jubilee Tour of Leicester.

As much of the UK geared up to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee, the occasion also impelled debate about the future of the monarchy. Dissenting voices and opposition to the monarchy have been captured in the archive, see for example the website of the Jubilee Protest ‘Protest at the Pageant’ and Republic: campaigning for a democratic alternative to the monarchy.

The Mass Observation Project worked with us to record online observations from members of the public about the Diamond Jubilee. The observations were hosted on a blog which has been harvested as part of the Diamond Jubilee collection.

New content will continue to be added until December 2012. The British Library would be delighted to receive your nominations for this collection via our online form.  

Nicola Johnson, Web Archivist 1st August 2012







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