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Keeping KSP Alive: Our 2021 Heritage Grant Project

Late last year, the KSP Writers' Centre was one of only 61 lucky organisations selected to receive heritage grant funding from the National Library of Australia (NLA) out of 123 applications.

Left to right: Elizabeth Doepel, Sam Beard, Shannon Britza, Nathan Hobby.

A grant of $10,780.00 as part of the NLA Community Heritage Grant program gave KSP the brilliant opportunity to participate in a personalised series of conservation and collections management workshops. The workshops were designed to equip the KSP team with the skills to better manage and develop the KSP heritage collection, which includes objects owned by Katharine Susannah Prichard and Hugo Throssell VC.

Left to right: Shannon Britza, Nathan Hobby, Sam Beard, Elizabeth Lewis.

The workshop series covered everything from collections governance to digitisation to the preservation and display of books, and were facilitated by Sam Beard and Elizabeth Doepel from the Australian Museums and Galleries Association (AMaGA) WA, and Stephanie Baily, paper conservator.

TOP. Left to right: Nathan Hobby, Stephanie Baily, Gaye Sweeney, Kathy Parker, Sheree Lewis.

BELOW. Sam Beard photographing KSP's wooden camel statue, which was owned by Katharine (purchased for her by Hugo Throssell from Egypt during WWI) and donated to the Centre by Susan Hartley.

The KSP team now has a formal Collection Policy and an action plan to develop and adopt best-practice heritage collection practices. We also have a 'wish list' of longer term goals which include cataloguing the KSP collection and making this information public through Collections WA, and curating regular public exhibitions.

Left to right: Elizabeth Doepel, Elizabeth Lewis, Sheree Lewis.

Without this funding, it would have taken many, many years - if at all! - to acquire the specialist industry knowledge that we now have to manage KSP's collection, to not only ensure the information is recorded correctly and therefore preserved for the future, but to eventually be in a position where we can safely share the stories of these items with the public. We whole-heartedly thank the National Library of Australia for recognising the importance of our collection, and for their generous support.


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