– notes, frequently asked questions and useful links from the archivist and curator of manuscripts at Balliol College, University of Oxford. Opinions expressed are the author's own.

Open Doors additional


The reception team at St Cross for Open Doors 2014, ready with lots of information about the Oxford Preservation Trust, St Cross and its conversion to Balliol College’s special collections centre, and the current exhibition about the Balliol Boys’ Club and its members’ involvement in the First World War.


Balliol’s 1588 charter of Elizabeth I above a table of information sheets about St Cross, Balliol’s special collections, , our neighbours the Friends of Holywell Cemetery, other WW1 centenary exhibitions and events in Oxford (especially the Bodleian and OUCS) – and the charter itself.


Book stall – all free to take away during Open Doors: back numbers of the College Record, HB Hartley’s paperback Balliol Men, the 1st edition of the History of the Balliol Boys’ Club and other college publications.
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More books to browse – another copy of the Balliol College War Memorial Book and the 2nd edition of the history of the Balliol Boys’ Club, which brings the history up to the end of the club in 1971.

Inside the repository doors, we have as usual made the most of yet more display space with a few images from the collections. In past years we have sometimes used these spaces to display a medieval manuscript or two – they are extremely popular no matter what the theme of any other display in the building may be. This year I decided not to distract from the WW1 theme by showing any medieval mss, but There Have Been Complaints, so I may go back it next year…

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We have taken the same opportunity to show an excellent display by the Oxford Conservation Consortium about their work on the special collections of a group of about a dozen Oxford colleges.
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A view of the nave from the pulpit – a rare quiet moment during Open Doors!

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