SAPPHIRE on the move

The SAPPHIRE initiative is on the move again! After three years being co-directed from Dundee, it will return fully to Edinburgh in January 2015, when co-director David Finkelstein takes up a new post as Chair in Continuing Education and Head of the Office of Lifelong at the University of Edinburgh. Its archives are also being shifted to Edinburgh University to be managed by the Centre for Research Collections. David will join co-director Professor Alistair McCleery from Edinburgh Napier University in furthering cross-institutional partnerships between key Edinburgh institutions involved in Scottish book trade history research.

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SAPPHIRE features in History Scotland journal

The SAPPHIRE initiative features in the January 2016 issue of History Scotland, which dedicates a page to its rich archive of material related to the social, economic and cultural history of Scotland's print industry. It highlights some of the recent projects SAPPHIRE has undertaken, and notes the move of the physical archive to the University of Edinburgh's Centre for Research Collections. The Centre is located in the University Library in George Square, where material can be consulted from Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

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40 Years of Scottish Publishing, 1974-2014

In May 2014 SAPPHIRE joined forces with Publishing Scotland to create an exhibition celebrating 40 years of Scottish Publishing. For further information, see the project page


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SAPPHIRE documents the Wayzgoose phenomenon

As part of its commitment to making resources available on the social and cultural history of the print trade, SAPPHIRE has added new material to its site about the Wayzgoose phenomenon. 'Wayzgoose' is a term formerly used in the UK (and elsewhere in the English speaking world) to describe annual social outings that were organised by unions, management and workers in the publishing and printing trades. An ESRC funded SAPPHIRE initiative spent 18 months documenting this phenomenon. One of the results was an exhibition outlining some of our findings. We are pleased to make available the panels from this exhibition on our site at

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As of 27 March 2014, the SAPPHIRE website continues to maintain milestone viewer numbers, notching up its 46,000th visitor since site monitoring began in 2007. In the three years since last site monitoring report was issued, 45,000 individual page views have been recorded from 16,000 internet users in 145 countries. Our most popular pages have been our introductory page, (5,000 hits), our industrial papermaking page (4,200 hits), our oral history archives (2,400 hits) and our Thomas Nelson project page (2,000 hits).

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