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The Library and Information History Group organises two annual awards: the Library History Essay Award and the James Ollé Awards.

The LIHG also offers bursaries for its members to attend CILIP's annual conferences and its own study conferences.


James Ollé Awards

James G. Ollé (1916-2001) was an active teacher and distinguished writer in the field of library history; and the Library and Information History Group has offered awards in his memory since 2002 with the intention of encouraging a high level of activity in library and information history.  The value of each James Ollé Award is presently up to £1000. Anyone with a keen interest in Library and/or Information History is encouraged to apply for an Ollé Award. Candidates do not need to be attached to libraries, archive repositories or academic institutions; however, recipients of Ollé Awards must be existing members of the Library and Information History Group, or join the Group on receipt of an Award. The award is not intended to cover conference attendance costs.

Examples of what an Award might be used to fund include:

  • travel and accommodation costs in order to undertake research on an aspect of library or information history
  • attendance costs at a training course on an aspect of library or information history
  • reproduction costs (photocopying, digitisation, photography)

James Ollé Award recipients are required to write a report (maximum 1000 words) of the work undertaken for inclusion in the LIHG's Newsletter. They might also be invited to present a short paper at an LIHG conference or Group meeting, such as the AGM.

Further particulars, expressions of interest and applications, which should include a CV, a statement of plans, a draft budget and the names and addresses of two referees, should be send to the Group's Awards Manager:

Dr Dorothy Clayton

Awards Manager, Library and Information History Group



Library History Essay Award, 2018

The Library and Information History Group's Library History Essay Award is an annual prize for the best essay on library history published in, or pertaining to, the British Isles, within the previous calendar year.  Introduced in 1996, the award is organized and sponsored by the LIHG and aims to improve the quality and increase the quantity of writing on library history in the British Isles. The prize in 2018 will be £350.

Essays should embody original historical research on a significant subject, be based on original source materials if possible, and use good composition and style. Essays showing evidence of methodological and historiographical innovation will be particularly welcome.

An author may put himself/herself forward for the prize but may submit only one essay per year. In addition, any member of CILIP may nominate a published essay for consideration.

The closing date for the 2018 Library History Essay Award is 30 April 2018.

The entries will be identified and judged by a panel of three:

Chair of the LIHG
Awards Manager of the LIHG
External assessor at the invitation of the LIHG Committee

If nominators or authors have any queries (e.g. whether or not a particular essay is eligible for the Library History Essay Award), please contact the Group's Awards Manager, Dorothy Clayton:

Dr Dorothy Clayton
Awards Manager, Library and Information History Group
0161 638 6429




Women and the Book Conference 2018

On Friday 26 October 2018 the Institute of English Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, is hosting a conference on 'Women and the Book'. One of the plenary speakers is to be David Pearson, speaking on women owners in the seventeenth century. The LIHG will offer two student bursaries to attend the conference, with an additional £100 each to go towards travel or other expenses. Candidates (who should either be members of the LIHG or ready to join the group) should send a 1-page CV and paragraph of interest to either Daniel Gooding ( or Sophie Defrance ( before 30 June 2018.


The full conference programme is available here: 


CILIP Library and Information History Group Annual Conference 2018

The LIHG committee are delighted to announce that we are able to offer a student bursary to attend this year's CILIP Library & Information History Group Conference at the St Bride Foundation, London, on Saturday 7th July. The bursary will include the conference fee and reasonable travel expenses not exceeding £100. The committee may award more than one bursary based on the strength of applications. Applicants should submit a one-page CV and short paragraph explaining their interest in attending the conference to Jill Dye ( by Friday 8th June 2018. 


Please note that this bursary is only available to UK-based students (full or part time), and applicants must be members of the Library & Information History Group (or willing to join the group if awarded the bursary). The successful applicant(s) will be required to write a conference report for the newsletter.


The full conference programme is available here:



CILIP Annual Conference 2018

The CILIP Conference is the annual flagship event for the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and one of the biggest events in the calendar for UK library and information professionals. The conference brings together library, knowledge and information professionals from all sectors of our profession from the UK and overseas, to meet, learn and share knowledge. It’s a great chance to catch up with colleagues and make new connections. Penny Young (House of Commons) and Sally Walker (Scotland’s Library and Information Professional of the Year) will be opening the conference showcasing the best of British librarianship. They will be followed by John Chrastka and Patrick Sweeney of EveryLibrary talking about their ground-breaking work in the United States. The 2018 conference takes place in Brighton on 4-5 July. The LIHG bursary includes access to both days of the conference, lunch, refreshments and all sessions. It also includes a ticket to the evening reception at Palm Court on Brighton Palace Pier and one night’s accommodation, both on Wednesday 4 July 2018. In addition, CIG will cover travel costs for up to £100. The recipient must be a member of the LIHG group, or join the group upon being awarded the bursary. The bursary winner will also be asked to kindly assist the LIHG representative at the LIHG's conference stand. Please apply before the 2nd of May, 2018, by emailing a short cv (1 page) and a paragraph detailing your motivation to: Dorothy Clayton ( or Sophie Defrance (     


Montefiascone Project, Italy

The Library and Information History Group is sponsoring two places on the Montefiascone Project in Italy this summer. Niamh Delaney and Mairéad Walsh have been selected to hold these bursaries. Watch out for their blogs from Montefiascone in mid-August, and for an article on their experiences in the autumn LIHG Newsletter.     


Previous funded projects

The Library and Information History Group is keen to support projects in any field of library and information history. In the past this has taken the form of financial support, provision of expertise, dissemination of research findings via the Group’s publications or events, or potentially providing web-hosting of resources created by a project.  Below are examples of previous projects supported by the LIHG.



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