‘Oscar’ of the record keeping sector awarded to Virtual Record Treasury Ireland


21 November 2022
Official in the ruins of the Four Courts (Courtesy UCD Archives)
At an event at the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland on 21 November the Archives and Records Association (UK and Ireland) will present the prestigious Ellis Prize to the Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland.

This is the first time the prize has been presented to a group rather than an individual and is only the tenth time it has been presented in the 50 years of its existence.

The Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland is a research project working to digitally recreate the Irish state archives destroyed by fire in 1922. The project is led by Trinity College Dublin, in collaboration with over 70 libraries and archives worldwide. 

Seven centuries of Irish history

The Virtual Treasury comprises five core partners, the National Archives, Ireland, The National Archives (UK), the Public Record Office of Northern Ireland, the Irish Manuscripts Commission and The Library, Trinity College Dublin. It is funded by the Government of Ireland through Department of Culture, Dublin, under Ireland’s Decade of Centenaries Programme (2012-2023)). 

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Since the launch of the Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland in June 2022, the public has been able to ‘step back in time’ to explore a virtual recreation of the Public Record Office of Ireland and its collections, as they were on the eve of their destruction at Dublin’s Four Courts at the outset of the Irish Civil War.    

The Ellis Prize is being awarded to the Virtual Record Treasury of Ireland for 'their excellent work in delivering back to the Irish nation and its diaspora more than 700 years of Irish history and culture'. The project also demonstrates to the global record-keeping sector what can be achieved with 'innovation and imagination, through the use of new technology and through trans-national and trans-sectoral collaboration'.