Explore Your Archive

Company: Sainsbury Archive based at Museum of London Docklands and part of the Museum of London
Sector: Retail
Impact: Brand knowledge & marketing; Corporate identity
Sponsor: Museum of London
Timescale: One week

Project brief

Contribute to 2017 Explore Your Archive campaign by organising four events across the week. Explore Your Archive is a campaign that showcases the best of archives and archive services in the UK and Ireland. The campaign is owned by the sector itself and delivered by a wide range of partners and stakeholders, including The National Archives (UK) and the Archives and Records Association (UK & Ireland). Visit: www.exploreyourarchive.org

The project objective was to:

  • showcase the history of Sainsbury’s – the company’s continuous growth and impact on social history
  • engage in a national campaign driven by the archive sector
We found the Explore Your Archive process exceptionally worthwhile as we engaged over 400 people across the week.
Liane MacIver, Assistant Archivist 2017

Business archives used by the team

  • • Key items from the Sainsbury Archive collection including photographs of Sainsbury’s branches, a wide selection of food packaging and wartime advertising material.

Outcomes and business benefit

  • • A stall displaying archive material during a Museum of London Docklands’ family festival provided an opportunity for large numbers of museum goers to see the material.
  • • The Assistant Archivist collaborated with the Museum’s Learning Department to create a storytelling session for children under five which incorporated the history of the company and was illustrated by the archive handling collection.
  • • Creation of a temporary archive display highlighting the evolution of the company with added short presentations by the Assistant Archivist on the company’s history.
  • • Capturing new audiences by running a children’s activity at Museum of London, London Wall. The activity involved the use of yellow salt dough to act as butter. Children with adults were invited to try their hand at ‘knocking up the butter’ using duplicate butter beaters to shape the dough into a square package of butter.
  • • Explore your Archive’s own social media campaign provided a ready-made toolkit to help archive staff delve into the collection and discover related material for the daily hashtags which were well received on social media platforms.