January 2006 - "Datafind complete 1st archiving stage for Tameside"
Mike Gurney of Tameside Council sees the Archiving of his Plans and Registers as crucial within his Business Continuity Strategy.
Tameside have now completed archiving their Burial Maps, the last map was collected last week by Datafind which was the overall large cemetery plan which they plan to have printed to Toughmap and have Signage put together.
The next archiving phase for Tameside will be starting shortly where they plan to scan their Books, again Datafind and Mike Gurney of Tameside will plan doing the work in batches to enable the council to manage the Budget more efficiently.
January 2006 - "Bradford begin archiving for another Cemetery"
Bradford have made the decision to start archving their Nab Wood Cemetery.
In October last year, Datafind completed the scanning of the Books for Scholemoor Cemetery, The work for the Nab Wood Cemetery will be start at then end of March allowing for the new budgets to come into play.
January 2006 - "2006 will put Wolverhampton on the map!"
Wolverhampton City Council have asked Datafind to scan the remainder of their cemetery maps in batches throughout 2006. This will mean that all of their maps will be fully archived by the end of this year.
January 2006 - "Salford looking to place more records online"
Brian Stott of Salford Diocese has given Datafind the go ahead to make changes to his CMS system which will eventually allow records to be uploaded into an publicly accessible website.
Brian is also looking at the possibility of introducing a kiosk into his reception area to allow the visiting public to make enquiries online.
January 2006 - "Showing Off Camden! "
Camden Council approached Datafind to ask if we could provide any help with an up and coming exhibition and presentation regarding their Bereavement Services. Datafind said "Yes We Can Help!".
Datafind worked with Camden to produce:
- A printed cemetery map on foamex board
- A banner stand describing their services
- A powerpoint presentation
The deadline was tight, everything needed to be produced within a couple of weeks. Datafind completed the task within time and to budget.
January 2006 - "Rotherham want Faster Access to their Burial Records "
Datafind visited Rotherham in October, set up our scanning equipment and scanned their burial registers within their reception area.
Richard Gibson, Bereavement Services Manager at Rotherham, has always been keen to preserve and protect his records - but also had another objective: To allow staff to quickly access the records; and long term to display the records on the web in order for the public to view them.
Datafind are now capturing over 130,000 interment and grave records. This capture is taking place from the 'scanned pages' - which means that the original books are never taken away from Rotherham's staff.
Once complete - the captured records will be 'linked' to the scanned pages - thus allowing staff to perform searches quickly. Consideration can then be made regarding placing this valuable database onto the web.
December 2005 - "Caradon choose Datafind's Administration System "
Caradon District Council have opted to purchase Datafind's Cemeteries Management Suite.
Datafind offer two versions of the software - CMS Pro and CMS Lite. Being a reasonably small council, Caradon opted for CMS Lite.
Datafind are now undertaking the following services in order to get Caradon up and running on their new system.
- Scanning their burial registers (onsite)
- Performing a data capture of their records from the burial registers
- Scanning their burial maps and turning them into clickable maps.
- Integrating bespoke requirements into the software
November 2005 - "Darlington Scan Fiche Records"
Some time ago - Darlington Council decided to scan their burial registers to Microfiche.
Microfiche is an excellent long-term archiving medium, however, accessing the images is still a problem.
Datafind Services have been assigned the task of scanning and producing digital images from their Microfiche and providing the digital images (.tiffs and .jpegs) back on CD-Rom along with our Book Viewing Software.
You can read more about Scanning from Microfiche and Microfilm by Clicking Here.
November 2005 - "Flintshire 'Sign Up' for Signage!"
Following the scanning of his cemetery maps, Mike Bennion of Flintshire County Council, has now placed an order with Datafind for signage for five of his cemeteries. His new vandal proof signage will direct members of the public around his grounds.
Craig Thurlow of Datafind said: 'Mike is really moving his cemeteries forward quite rapidly. Within a few months he has gone from having single copies of old fragile cemetery maps that only a limited number of people could have access to, through to having digitised copies that can be accessed by anyone at any location. The maps have also been printed as indestructible Toughmaps and now printed to steel vandal-proof signage too.'
Mike has mentioned that he is interested in receiving Datafind Graphical Software and Training which will enable him to graphically update his digital cemetery plans.
November 2005 - " Clackmannanshire Gets Good Press"
Datafind recently visited Clackmannanshire Council and scanned their Cemetery Registers dating back to 1866. Allan Gall is the Manager at the council and his main aim was to preserve the registers from further deterioration and to look to the future with a view to being able to publish them online for the public to access.
The project received some very good reviews in the Clackmannanshire Newspapers. Click Here to read the articles.
October 2005 - "Rotherham's Records Are Now Safe"
Datafind recently visited Rotherham Council and spent a week at their offices scanning their burial and cremation registers.
Richard Gibson had concerns about releasing his books from his offices and therefore utilised Datafind's on-site scanning capabilities.
Datafind are currently placing the scanned images into 'Book Viewing Software' - allowing Richard and his team to find, print, email and fax pages within just a couple of mouse clicks.
Hand-written letters from members of the public were glued to the pages of many books - Richard pointed out that these can sometimes hold very valuable information and requested that Datafind scan these too.
October 2005 - "Brent get Scanning! "
Datafind have recently supplied London Borough of Brent with a 'hand-held' scanner.
Brent wanted a quick and easy way to 'email' an entry from one of their registers.
The scanner is simple to use and enables staff to pass the scanner over an entry on a page within their books, the entry is then digitised into a .tiff image which can then be emailed or placed within a Word document.
October 2005 - "Scottish Borders Digitise their 150 Cemeteries!"
Scottish Borders Council are 'very' unique in the fact that they maintain and control around 150 cemeteries! This presents all kinds of issues and problems for Robert Mathison and his staff within Bereavement Services.
One of the problems is accessing the information with his books which are stored at 6 different offices. Datafind are currently visiting each of his 6 offices and scanning all of the books on-site.
Once complete, Robert and his staff will be able to view all of the pages within all of his books for all 150 of his cemeteries from any location!
October 2005 - "Wolverhampton's archiving project is now up and running!"
Wolverhampton City Council have started archiving their Burial Maps.
Accessing the images of the maps will be much easier - enabling staff to access them from any location and print copies on request.
Due to the high-resolution of the scanned maps the information within them is also much clearer.
October 2005 - "Charnwood Continue to Preserve Books"
Charnwood have continued the process of archiving all of there burial registers. Datafind started the project back in June this year and have now completed the task of scanning the balance of the books.
Charnwood now have full disaster recovery plans in place should 'the worst' happen.
Accessing the books from their PC's also means that staff are no longer physically handling them which therefore means that they will not deterioarte any further.
October 2005 - Cemeteries Management Suite - Launch - "CMS is not Just Another Admin System"
We are very excited about our latest offering to the Bereavement Services market.. CMS.
The official launch willl be at the conference in Harrogate. You can come along to our stand and see Demonstrations of the Software. Everyone who visits the stand will receive a voucher entitling you to a 5% discount on CMS (and all of our other services too). You will also be entered into our Prize Draw to win 20% off CMS and a Hamper of Champagne.
If you can't wait to see CMS at the Conference - you can find out more by clicking here.
September 2005 - North Ayrshire Council - "Space & Accessibility issue resolved! "
Space and accessibility of information were two of the reasons why David McColl at North Ayrshire Council asked Datafind Services to scan his Interment Notices, Risk Assessment Forms, Letters and other Forms.
David gave Datafind a selection of his forms in boxes and lever arch files. These forms were tagged and stapled.
Datafind removed the tagging and staples, quickly scanned them to PDF (Adobe Acrobat) files, burned them to DVD and then re-stapled the documents back together.
Datafind delivered the digitised images back to North Ayrshire along with a DVD burner, PDF Software and an ultra-fast A4 duplex scanner.
Staff were then provided with training – showing them how to use the equipment and software in order to archive the remaining forms.
August 2005 - Datafind launch New Product - "Corrosion Free CD Jewel Case Inserts"
are excited to launch our latest innovative product to the market: Corrosion
Free CD Jewel Case
Inserts". Tom Gilbert, Director at Datafind said "Cases
of rotting CD-Roms are now well documented, and as we like to protect
our client's data we have introduced this exciting new product to
the Archival Market." Read more about this news story by Clicking
August 2005 - North Ayrshire Council - "Storage of Forms is a Real Problem"
David MacColl (President of the ICCM) recently contacted Datafind to say that he has thousands of Interment Notices and Memorial Risk Assessment Forms that are taking up lots of space in their offices. Datafind are now scanning his forms and notices and will then be providing him with a scanner, software and training to enable his staff to continue archiving his forms... therefore freeing up valuable office space!
August 2005 - Falkirk Council - "Give me the Ability to Update my Maps!"
It seems that whilst some other archivists can scan maps, nobody else offers the ability to provide graphical software and training to update those maps - allowing you to add new plots, pathways, sections etc. Datafind have scanned the maps for Falkirk council and will be providing full graphical software and training.
August 2005 - Brighton and Hove Council - "Archiving Maps"
Datafind have recently been helping Brighton and Hove City Council archive their cemetery maps to CD-Rom. Once on CD-Rom they can be placed in a safe-location - safe in the knowledge that they are covered should a disaster strike. Alternatively they can be used as 'working maps' - using our graphical software they can be updated and maintained with new plots, pathways etc.
August 2005 - Desborough Reformative Church - "We have only got one copy our Map!"
The Reformative Church in Desborough, a local small town situation close to the Datafind's offices, approached Datafind to say that they 'only have one copy of the Graveyard Map... what would happen if something should happen to it?'. Datafind scanned the map to CD and then produced a replica copy of it for them.
August 2005 - Bradford City Council - "Indexing the Registers for Faster Searches "
Datafind have been busy lately scanning and archiving Bradfords Registers. To enable staff to find pages within the Registers faster, Datafind have also 'indexed' the books so that the Book Viewing software can quickly find pages that match search criteria.
August 2005 - Tameside - "Training to Graphically Update their Maps "
Mike Gurney of Tameside council wanted the ability to add new plots, new sections and add pathways to his digitally scanned maps. Paul Sugden of Datafind spent a day onsite with Mike providing the Graphical Software and Training to enable him to do this.
August 2005 - Flintshire - "We Want to Make our Maps More Accessible"
Flintshire's plot maps are large and quite difficult to open and read. "We want to make the maps more accessible so that any member of staff can access them from any computer" was a comment made by Michael Bennion at the council. Scanning them to CD and to servers ensures that staff can view the maps on screen and then print copies on demand.
August 2005 - Bradford City Council - "Scanning Makes Maps Safe"
After archiving many of Bradford's Burial Registers - Datafind's project has now moved on to archiving their Plot Maps. Some of these maps were in a terrible condition - scanning them ensures that there are now no more fears regarding further deterioration.
July 2005 - Inverclyde Council - "Onsite Scanning Project"
Ian Kearns, Bereavement Services Manager at Inverclyde Council in Greenock, Scotland, was aware that his registers needed archiving to ensure that Business continued should a disaster strike (fire, flood, burglery etc.) - but was more concerned over the fact that the Freedom of Information Act meant that he and his staff needed to provide information to the public faster and better than ever before.
As Ian did not feel comfortable releasing his registers, Datafind spent a full week onsite at Ian's offices, scanning ALL of the registers.
July 2005 - NEW for Summer 2005 - CLICKABLE MAPS!
A Clickable Map allows you to view your map on your computer screen and then click on areas within the map in order to view underlying database information relating to the area being clicked.
Click Here for a Demo.
July 2005 - Bradford City Council - "Continue to Archive Registers"
Contining Bradford's archiving project which began in February this year we are currently scanning the grave, burial and cremation registers. Being A1 in size with in excess of 900 pages these registers are quite unique as well as being very heavy!
July 2005 - Salford Diocese - "Viewing Funeral Diaries and Perfoming Deceased Searches Online "
Salford Diocese are in the fortunate position of already having most of their burial records captured into their own database. Since April we have been helping them to integrate this data into their web site and have developed an online funeral booking system for them.
Staff can now perform 'searches for deceased records' online. The public also have limited access to the records. Funeral Directors, stone masons etc. are also able to view funeral diaries via their website.
June 2005 - Tameside
Datafind have continued to scan Tameside's maps. To fit in with Tameside's budgets, Datafind are scanning their maps in batches and this month scanned 20 of their maps.
June 2005 - Brent ask Datafind for MORE Data Entry!
Almost 2 years ago Datafind captured in excess of 250,000 records for Brent Council. This involved scanning their books, performing the data entry from their books and then deploying their records within a database that was accessible over the web. All of this was achieved within 8 weeks! Brent have now asked Datafind to capture the data for their remaining cemeteries.
June 2005 - Charnwood Preserve Books and Maps!
A fear that has been playing on the mind of Charnwood Council's staff was the fact that their books and maps were not copied or archived should a disaster strike the building. Datafind have recently scanned their books and maps and hopefully reduced the fear!.
June 2005 - On the Wyre!
In order to help with Memorial Testing - Datafind Services recently scanned Wyre Cemetery Maps. Scanning them has ensured that they are now preserved and that they can be changed to allow for more accurate memorial testing.
June 2005 - St Helens Maps Scanned
Datafind Services have recently scanned maps for St Helens Council.
Due to faded text and rips in the paper, we are also repairing and graphically restoring some of their map images.
May 2005 - Price Promise Guarantee
Datafind Services are pleased to announce our new Price Promise Guarantee....
"If a customer is provided with a cheaper price on a like-for-like quotation elsewhere then we will beat that price by a minimum of 10%."
Paul Sugden, a Director at Datafind Services, said "A customer will normally place an order based on quality and price. We know that the quality of our work is unsurpassed and we also feel that our prices have always been extremely competitive - however, with this Price Promise incentive we are guaranteeing that we will be the best on quality and price... meaning that a customer will get exactly what they want at the best possible price."
May 2005 - East Ayrshire Council - "Back Data Entry - 140,000 records Captured in less than 5 weeks!"
Having scanned East Ayrshire's burial registers (onsite at their offices), we then set about typing the records straight from the scans. The main advantage of typing the records from the scans was that the books did not need to be taken away from their offices - it also ensured that the data capture was performed much quicker - more than one typist could work on the same register at the same time. This meant that we were able to capture over 140,000 records in under 5 weeks!
East Ayrshire are now accessing these records via our 'Book Viewing Software' which means that after finding a record, they are able to click on it to see the 'actual' Register page from which that record was typed.
May 2005 - Tameside - Batching Work
Tameside Metropolitan Council have recently taken the step to archive all their Maps. Mike Gurney, Manager at Tameside, has split the project up into batches, allowing him to manage his budget more efficiently.
Datafind understand the budgets of Councils and are happy to scan items in seperate batches to enable them to manage the project better.
The Tamesides maps were so neat and colourful that Datafind have used them as examples of work within our Picture Gallery.
May 2005 - Bourne are Born again!
Whenever a member of the public arrived at the Town Hall in Bourne (Lincolnshire) asking for information from the burial registers, the bereavement services manager found it a real struggle to provide the information. There were a couple of reasons - a) It wasn't always easy to find the information in the books; and b) She would have to take all of her heavy registers down the stairs, outside and round to the Reception of the Town Hall in order to show the person the information.
Datafind provided a solution to both of her problems!
Datafind scanned her books and using our book viewing software she was able to load the scanned pages onto her laptop. This meant that instead of having to carry all of the heavy registers to the Town Hall Reception, she could simply take her laptop with her. Datafind also captured 'search fields' from the registers that included 'surname, forename, year of death, age and plot number', and these 'search fields' were linked through to the scanned pages - this meant that she could find the information that the member of the public was looking for within just a few mouse-clicks.
Datafind scanned her books and captured all of her records in under 3 weeks.
May 2005 - Market Deeping are Deeply Worried!
"If this place burns down then we have lost everything... we wouldn't be able to provide a service!". That was the opinion of the Town Clerk at Market Deeping Town Council.
Town Clerks have lots of responsibilities - and at Market Deeping one of the clerks responsibilities is to organise the annual Fireworks display... and this means that the Clerk purchases the Fireworks (Rockets, Catherine Wheels etc.) and has to store them within her office, in a cabinet next to the cabinet that contains her burial registers.
Datafind scanned her books and maps and archived them to a CD and to her Computers - which means that should a Rocket inadvertently combust and start shooting round the office and set her registers alight - at least the books with over 150 years of information are backed up safely!
April 2005 - Flooding in Carlisle ensures action is taken!
The floods in Carlisle were so terrible and unexpected that they made the national newspaper headlines. The floods hit the basement of the Civic Hall where many old records were kept - unfortunately many of these unique records were destroyed and are now gone forever.
June Caswell, Bereavement Services Manager at Carlisle City Council, reflected on a "close miss" and said that just a few weeks previously, many of their Burial Registers were stored in the basement at the Civic, and it was only by chance that they decided to move them back to the Cemetery Offices. The basement of the Civic Hall was flooded in almost 20 feet of water!
Now... in order to preserve them should any future disaster strike and to adhere with 'business continuity' guidelines, Datafind Services Ltd have archived Carlisle's books to CD-Rom and to their networked servers. Archiving them has not only ensured that they are preserved, but has also enabled records to be found much quicker... quick searches across all of the images has meant that records can be found within just a few mouse clicks.
April 2005 - East Ayrshire Council - "Back Data Entry"
Having scanned East Ayrshire's registers, we are now typing the records straight from the scans. The main advantage of typing the records from the scans is that the books do not need to be taken away from their offices - it also ensures that the data capture is performed much quicker - more than one typist can be working on the same register at the same time.
April 2005 - Salford Diocese - "Viewing Funeral Diaries and Perfoming Deceased Searches Online "
Salford Diocese are in the fortunate position of already having most of their burial records captured into their own database. We are now helping them to integrate this data into their web site. The public will soon be able to performed 'searches for deceased records' online. Funeral Directors will soon be able to view 'funeral diaries' - and staff will be able to add funerals to their database which will be shown instantly on the web.
April 2005 - South London Crematorium - "Knitting Maps together and creating Toughmaps"
Having scanned, altered and enhanced South London's plot maps - we were then asked to knit the sectional maps together to create one 'large' map. This large map was then printed as a Toughmap - our indestructible material.
March 2005 - Bradford City Council - "Archiving Registers & Maps"
This archiving project is in its early stages. We are currently scanning the grave and burial registers. Being A1 in size with in excess of 900 pages these registers are quite unique as well as being very heavy! We are also scanning their old, fragile plot maps too. The purpose of this archiving exercise is to ensure that the records can be recovered should a disaster strike (fire, flood, burglary etc.).
March 2005 - North & East Ayrshire Council - "Onsite Scanning of Registers & Maps"
Unlike most UK Burials Offices, Scottish Authorities do not tend to have duplicate sets of registers. That being the case - they are sometimes reluctant let their registers and maps go offsite for archiving. So what did we are Datafind Services do? We took our portable scanning equipment to their offices and performed the scanning onsite! We are now using their scanned pages to perform their back data entry.
February 2005 - South London Crematorium - "Computerising Plot Maps "
Having scanned, altered and enhanced South London's plot maps - and ensured that the staff could continue to maintain them - we were then asked to create a database from which the plot maps could be easily accessed. This involved capturing all of the plot numbers from each of their sectional maps into a database and then creating software to access them. Their new system allows them to enter a 'plot id' and a map showing that 'plot id' is displayed. This map can then be printed, faxed, emailed or pasted into another document.
January 2005 - South London Crematorium - "Bringing plot maps up-to-date"
Like many Burials Offices, South London's maps were out-of-date. Having scanned all of their 70+ plot maps we then began working with the staff at the Crematorium over a period of 2 months in order to bring them up-to-date. This involved adding and moving plots, adding and moving pathways and creating completely new sections too. The end result is that they now have maps that are up-to-date and within a computer system where they can be maintained and printed at any time.
2004 - Brent Council - "Have the Full Service!"
Brent Council approached Datafind with a view to archiving their registers. They were concerned that they may have problems should their registers disappear (fire, flood, theft etc.). Having digitised their registers, they decided that they would also like them rebound. We rebound and colour-coded their books and they now sit nicely within their library.
Having nearly 300,000 burial and cremation records meant that retrieving information from their registers was sometimes a problem, and so they asked us to capture the records into a database. We performed the data capture from the scanned images. Within 8 weeks they had a system which allowed them to interrogate and maintain their 300,000 records. This computer system was web-enabled which meant they could access it from any computer that had an internet connection. It was also fully secure - being password protected for Staff Access only.
2004 - Dalton Council - "Go Online..."
Dalton Council approached Datafind with a view to getting their deceased records online. They were in the fortunate position of already having all of their records within their own database. They also had all of gravestones photographed and also the inscription messages typed into a spreadsheet. Using all of their data we were able to build them a complete website and integrate their database into it.
The public are now able to access their website, where they can find out lots of information about services available etc., and also perform family history searches. On finding a record they are able to view the location of the plot, view a photograph of the memorial and also read it's inscription.
The website can be found at www.stmichaelsdalton.co.uk.