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Pearl Document Scanning Blog

News and updates related to the document scanning industry.

Digital Archive Makes Historic Wills Available to View Online

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41 million wills registered in England and Wales dating back to 1858 have been digitised and made available online in a Government backed scheme to help people find out more about their ancestry and the lives of historical figures.

This digitising project, run by HM Courts and Tribunals service, has created an entirely digital archive which can be accessed for a small fee by anyone around the world wishing to view specific wills.

Among the archives are the wills of authors Charles Dickens, AA Milne and George Orwell. Dickens requested in his will not to be the subject of any “monument, memorial or testimonial whatsoever”, a request that has been broken not once but three times since his death in 1870. AA Milne is said to have left his fortune to a London club and his former school in Westminster while Orwell wanted his manuscripts preserved.

These newly digitised will open up a fascinating world for us to explore. Particularly interesting for us up here at our Manchester office was the inclusion of the will of Alan Turing. The ‘father of computer science’ has many memorials in the city and his will briefly shared his possessions between his mother and a few close colleagues.

Aside from well-known historical figures, this digital archive will also give the general public paid access to the wills of their relatives. So, rather than having to visit a probate registry, the documents can be requested and received online in the 10 day period instead.

This news once again proves the value of digitising to preserve the future of valuable information. Back in 2013, the wills of WW1 soldiers were also digitised to safeguard the pieces of history previously stored as physical copies in temperature controlled rooms.

Pearl Scan Archives Digitisation ServiceBacklog banner

Here at Pearl Scan, we offer a completely bespoke archives digitisation service so whether you want to scan books, manuscripts, newspapers or fragile documents, we can provide the perfect solutions for you. We have the facilities to scan a wide range of projects to produce high quality, text searchable images, perfect for digital archives. Fragile items are treated with the utmost care and all scanned images are put through extensive quality checks before delivery.

If you would like some more information on the archives digitisation service we offer, get in touch today to speak to a member of our dedicated and experienced team. For a free, no obligation quote for your scanning project, complete our online ‘request a quote’ form by following the relevant links below.

If you liked this, take a look at some of these related articles;
All UK Oil Paintings Online Thanks To BBC Scheme
The Oldest Law in England- Now Available Online
If The Vatican Can Go Digital, So Can You
Photo Scanning Gets Ryder Cup History Online

All UK Oil Paintings Online Thanks To BBC Scheme

All UK Oil Paintings Online Thanks To BBC Scheme

At the end of 2012, A UK charity collaborated with the BBC to complete the enormous task of getting all the UK's oil paintings online via their project Your Paintings.

Your Paintings was a joint initiative between the BBC, the Public Catalogue Foundation (a registered charity) and participating collections and museums from across the UK. The venture saw 212,000 oil paintings, including artwork by the likes of Francis Bacon, Pablo Picasso and John Constable, digitised and put on display on the BBC's Your Paintings

While we speak a lot about digitising documents to create a paperless office, here we can see other great reasons to digitise. Not only does the process of digitising preserve the future of rare and delicate items but it also gives those who would not necessarily be able to go and view art access to it and can provide education tools to schools and homes across the UK.

We can now see that the long established institutes of Britain are getting on board with modernising. Along with the safety and security benefits of going digital, these companies are are saving money, space and time in the process.

If you have a collection of paintings, photos or images that you want scanning, we at Pearl Scan can help. In the past, Pearl Scan digitised have the majority of the modern art collection at Manchester Art Gallery, so we know what we're doing. This also shows that the entertainment and education sector is another market interested in the benefits of going digital.

They can see the benefits, can you?

For more information on the scanning services we offer here at Pearl Scan, including scanning large format drawings and paintings and negatives scanning, get in touch today. For a free, no obligation, quote for your scanning project, complete our online form by following the relevant links below.

Check out these related article for more industry related news:
The Oldest Law in England- Now Available Online
New York's Paperless Legislation
East Lindsey Council's Paperless Strategy

The Oldest Law in England- Now Available Online

The Oldest Law in England Is Now Available Online

Thanks to the digitisation of an ancient manuscript predating the Magna Carta by almost 100 years, one of the oldest laws in England can now be viewed online.

The entire medieval manuscript, Textus Roffensis, was scanned and put online by scientists at the University of Manchester. It contains 476 pages and 484 images in total. Dr Chris Monks of the University of Manchester believes the manuscript is "truly...unique" and the reaction to the new accessibility of the digital version seems to be largely positive.

Janet Wilkinson, librarian at the university said "The University of Manchester Library has long recognised the need to preserve its digital material, as well as print, for future generations...I am reassured that this significant piece of history will now survive for future research purposes."

The original manuscript was suffering some water damage having been thrown into a river around the early 1700s so it seems a very good solution to have the pages digitised to future proof it for many more years. With the digitised copy, there will no longer be a worry that if the manuscript is damaged beyond repair, the information and history it contains will be lost forever.

This news has reinforced the need to scan important documents and information to digital format to increase their accessibility for people who may not be able to get to the hard copy and also to safeguard the information for the future.

If you are interested in having your documents, manuscripts and much more scanned, or if you would like some more information on how you can have your documents scanned by Pearl Scan, get in touch today.

New York's Paperless Legislation

New York's Paperless Legislation

Last week, New York State voted to allow legislature to go paperless. This will mean there will no longer be thousands of bills printed each year. As a result, lawmakers will also be able to access the legislation digitally.


Costs- With significantly less paper being printed each year, the paperless legislation will mean a huge amount in paper and ink costs will be saved. This money can thenpaperless-blog be spent on improving services in other areas.

Time- As we regularly say when we talk about the paperless office, without the need to waste time searching through a filing cabinet for documents and information, significant time can be spent doing more important work.

Moving forward- It is always good to see governments taking steps to keep up with modern technology and contemporary modern life. By switching to digital, offices will become more paper-light with open space to promote a healthy and more efficient working environment.

Paperless or paper-light offices also offer endless design possibilities. Check out some interesting paperless offices on our blog.

If you would like more information on how Pearl Scan can help your organisation become more efficient while also saving money and space, get in touch today to speak to a member of our friendly and experienced team.

Could You Be the Green Hidden Hero of your office?

scanning-workplace-wonderCould You Be a Green Hidden Hero?

WWF is looking for this year's Hidden Heroes and one category you could be up for is Workplace Wonder and Pearl Scan can help claim this title.

If you're looking to improve the green credentials of your office or the company as a whole, now is the perfect time to do it. By becoming an active environmentally friendly worker, you could get nominated for the WWF's Workplace Wonder award.

There are many things you can do to be nominated for the award from creating initiatives for the office to save energy to making your office paperless as long as you can show that you are trying to make a positive difference to our planet. So here are a few suggestions we have thought up.

Switch off lights and electrical equipment when they're not needed

You could organise a company-wide challenge to find the most energy saving office in the building. This could boost office morale and would work as an excellent team-building exercise. 

Run a cycle to work initiative

If your car park is overflowing on most days, challenge employees to cycle to work. This will keep them fit and also cut down on harmful chemicals released from all of those cars on the road each morning. If your office is too far for most to cycle then encourage car sharing. If some employees live near each other then car sharing provides a great alternative to taking seperate cars. It will also cut down on their costs of running the car on the commute if all those sharing the car contribute to the costs.

Encourage the use of mugs and glasses rather than plastic cups and bottles

Simply, the more reusable items you can use in the office, the less waste is produced. When your office is producing less waste, it will be more environmentally sustainable.

Scan filing cabinets, folders and boxes of documents

The first steps to creating a paperless office is to get rid of all of the hard copy documents that already exist. Now, we know that most documents that are filed like this tend to be too important to throw away, so you need a solution that means you can dispose of the documents without losing the information contained in them. Document scanning does just that. You can have your documents scanned to a digitised format and they will also be protected from loss, theft and damage unlike their hard copy counterparts.

Implement a Digital Document Management System

Once you have had your documents scanned to a digital format, you can put them, indexed and fully searchable, into a digital document management system. This will make your documents accessible and easy to share at the click of a button. Once all of your documents have been placed in this system, almost all of your business and document sharing can be conducted digitally to save on printing costs.

By implementing one, or all, of the above suggestions, you could be crowned Workplace Wonder. I'm sure you can come up with lots of your own too. Once you (or someone you know) WWF-Pandahave taken steps to make your office sustainable and environmentally friendly, fill out the nomination form on WWF's website before the 1st of December.

To learn more about our scanning process, please visit our page on scanning documents. If you would like to know how Pearl Scan solutions can help you and your company, get in touch today to speak to one of our friendly and experienced team.