College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Cultural store house enjoys online makeover

People using a Scottish cultural resource that features a wealth of material collected by Edinburgh researchers can enjoy an enriched experience.


Leugh seo sa Ghàidhlig

The unique online record of Scotland’s rich oral heritage has been enhanced to make archive material more readily accessible and user friendly.

The revamp of Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches (TaD) includes photographs and profiles of key contributors and fieldworkers.

Other new features include transcriptions of some Gaelic material to make the recordings more widely available, particularly to Gaelic learners and researchers.

When TaD was launched in December 2010, some 10,000 recordings could be accessed. Since then, the number has increased fivefold.

Priceless material

Material includes songs, stories, customs, traditions and beliefs, recorded from the 1930s onwards and with recordings in Gaelic, Scots and English.

The site includes thousands of items recorded for the University of Edinburgh’s School of Scottish Studies Archives.

It also features material from the archive of BBC Radio nan Gàidheal and the National Trust for Scotland's Canna Sound Archive Collection.

Alongside the upgrade, the University of Edinburgh has delivered a parallel project to migrate TAD’s data to the international archiving platform, ArchivesSpace.

The move will help to ensure there will be online access to the recordings and associated data for many years to come.

Vital support

Work was carried out with financial assistance from Bòrd na Gàidhlig, the Government-backed body tasked with promoting the language.

The University’s Head of Special Collections , Daryl Green, said the collaboration with Tobar an Dualchais had huge cultural significance.

He said: “The new site is a vital component of our shared mission to preserve and promote Scotland’s languages and cultures to as wide an audience as possible.”

TAD Director Floraidh Forrest is delighted the resource has gone live: “We hope the revamped site will draw new users to these precious recordings and enhance the experience for those already familiar with all that it has to offer.”

Related links

Tobar an Dualchais/Kist o Riches

Celtic and Scottish Studies at Edinburgh