Where are London’s Screen Archives?
‘London’s Screen Archives’ is not a place, a building, a collection or an organisation. London’s Screen Archives is a virtual archive: a network of organisations, lead by Film London, working together on a common mission to bring film heritage alive for London. In contrast to other regional film archives we have no dedicated physical space but there are lots of ways to find us: you can visit any of the collections in the network (information on their opening hours is available on this site); the London Screen Studies Collection, Birkbeck College has a viewing collection of nearly 2,000 LSA films on DVD; you can get in touch with us via our Film London offices; and of course you can view films, browse the catalogue and learn more on this website. With our many projects there are also lots of opportunities to see LSA films – sign up to our newsletter to see what’s on, when and where.
What material does London’s Screen Archives hold?
LSA does not own any material of its own, but brings together the films held by all those not-for-profit organisations in London that have archival film collections. The full breadth of London’s rich screen heritage is represented by these 70+ organisations, from feature films to home movies, with particular strengths in public information films, newsreels, films from industry and business or family films. Individually, these tell personal stories of how life has been lived: collectively, they tell bigger stories of changing neighbourhoods, patterns of work, travel, commerce, leisure and governance.
If you’d like help looking for something specific, we’re always happy to help guide you to a collection or collections that might be of interest. Please do get in touch!
LSA does three things:
- we locate and preserve London’s moving image collections
- we develop and sustain the region’s infrastructure (including skills, advocacy and training)
- we promote audience enjoyment of and engagement in film heritage of the region
In recent years, this has involved a vast range of activities, including arranging specialist filmographic inventories; providing advice on storage and conservation; training; digitisation of significant films about London; and acting as the organising body for a range of activities that bring archive film to the general public, including the London: A Bigger Picture project and Britain on Film.