This first version of the Respice Prospice catalogue of historic and future artefacts, records and stories was made on 12th November 2021. There will be a series of further releases to be made as development funds permit and some of the new content that we’ll include is described here.
At the last count the Respice Prospice catalogue includes records for approximately 1700 People, 1600 Events, and 1400 Digital Assets. We also have a list of first team fixtures and results from 1979 to 2000, season handbooks from 1951 to 2000, and many other photos, videos and documents. Our final tally of records will be much larger, potentially five to ten times larger so we have much to do.
Our Archivist Hugh Hutchison (firstname.lastname@example.org) and his support team will gradually work their way through this backlog. This is a fascinating task and Hugh invites other to provide assistance in this labour of love to capture the Club’s rich history.
Hugh also invites all to search cupboards, lofts and garages for any further materials. These can either be donated or loaned to the Club for inclusion in the Museum Archives and digitised and indexed for sharing.
Scanning of Minutes Books
The Club has a dozen or more minute and AGM record books dating from at least 1896 or earlier. The long term plan is to digitise all of the minute books to ensure that they are safely preserved. Then we patiently wait the development of Artificial Intelligence technology to the point where it can decipher such documents to create a digital copy which we can index into our other records. More details can be found HERE.
An example from the minutes of 11th March 1912 refers to a “providential escape from the assassins bullet” by Club President Leopold de Rothschild can be found HERE.
Wall of Remembrance
The current club website began being used to record Obituaries after Damian Bugeja’s death in 2010. But the records are patchy and incomplete. Our growing record of end of season reports such as Over The Bar includes many more obituary and valedictory messages. We anticipate that we will find many more such messages in the Club’s minute books.
We plan to create a Wall of Remembrance which will allow sad news to be announced and recorded in an Obituary and to invite the wider club family to record fond memories in a Valedictory section. These messages will then be preserved for posterity by the Club.
An early version of the Wall of Remembrance can he found HERE.
The RFU have recently launched a similar feature in its website HERE.
In the main clubhouse we currently have honours boards for Club Presidents, Club Captains, Life Members and Patrons. Missing is a VPs board and many more important honours are not included such as the recipients of our seasonal awards being honours caps, achievement awards, special cups including the Martin Armstrong Cup, Sportsmanship Cup, Young Player of the Year, We intend to create digital versions of these and to search the minute books to identify the historic winners of these awards.
An early version of the Honours Boards can be found HERE.
The first topical (as opposed to historic) posting to Respice Prospice is the account of the Club Dinner including an excellent collection of photos courtesy of MC Tsang. These photos have all been face tagged and indexed. The list of people in each image can be viewed if you visit the individual Digital Asset records for each photo.
In a future release we intend to provide an image overlay which maps the face names onto the individual photos. A prototype of this feature (text is currently difficult to read) can be found in the record of the Club Supper 1973 which can be found HERE.
Over time we will capture and publish many details of past tours. The first of these is the record of the Lourdes Tour in 1981 and details can be found HERE. This tour included three fixtures against clubs Tarbes Pyrenees and Union Sportive Argelais and the Place records HERE show the exact locations for these games. (If anyone can remember the name of the Tour Hotel let us know so that we can add this to the map.) Also check the locations for the USA 1986 tour on the same map.
(A list of all Club locations is HERE.)
These maps are currently prototype. Eventually we plan to record every location within Respice Prospice on dynamic maps like this.
Timelines & Calendars
In addition to having a full map of Places travelled to and from by Club players and members we will also build up a comprehensive record of the Events that took place. Events are best displayed chronologically using a Timeline and we have a prototype of such a timeline for Respice Prospice HERE - try the 3D view. (The Rolls Royce of timelines can be found HERE.)
A timeline is, pf course, merely a calendar that is displayed in a visually attractive way. Our entire Events library will be captures as a calendar, including forthcoming fixtures and other events for events planned in the coming season. As soon as each Event is completed it becomes the placeholder for the record of what happened, who participated, plus photos and videos to record the details.
A WIKI is a modern term for a simple-to-modify website that can be edited by multiple users. We anticipate that the Club will use Respice Prospice to create a permanent record of WWWW (Who, What, Where, When) stories. A good example is the story of the arrival of the Argaumsoras. This trophy was won during the 1962 tour to Torquay and put in a pride of place location in the Berkeley Fields clubhouse. It was subsequently seized by Irish pirates and spirited away to Cobh Pirates RFC. Subsequently a party of enterprising Exiles playing on tour against Cobh Pirates in 2005ish recaptured the trophy and returned it to the Club where is still proudly sits fifteen feet above the floor, securely affixed to the wall. This type of story can only be written by those who were there.
Additional Media Formats
Currently Respice Prospice holds PDF documents and photo images. Future formats will included video and 3D renditions of museum artefacts like caps and trophies.
Archivist Hugh is not only capturing digital images of the Club’s physical artefacts but ensuring that these are indexed and archived in a way to preserve the, often fragile, artefacts. This is the Respice Prospice Museum. Potentially we can make the contents of the museum available to future visitors, perhaps by providing virtual tours to the 3D contents.
We know that our plans are ambitious but the Club’s history is so rich it is only right that we aim to capture and display this in a way that is respectful to this content and secures this history, not only for the Club but also for all of us and the next generation of members.
For this project to develop and be maintained we need your financial support. In addition to the initial development investment we have an ongoing maintenance cost that we want to cover without impacting the ‘playing’ budget. If you are able to support in any you can do this through our fundraising page specifically focused on the project. This can be found HERE. We really appreciate and thank you for your support.
Everyone who contributes to the crowdfunding request will have the option to be recognised on the Supporters Wall.