Creative Access
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Trainee archivist scheme

Trainee archivist scheme

locationLondon, UK
ExpiresExpires: 17/08/2022
Archives / Library / Data

Closing date for applications: 16th August at 11.59pm

Salary/bursary: Competitive training bursary

Start date: end of September 2022

Duration: 6 months


Take a fantastic step into documentary production through this 6-month internship with the Documentary unit at BBC Studios.

BBC Studios is the biggest independent producer, and the most awarded production company in the UK. The Documentary Unit is known for its high quality, thought-provoking and award-winning factual content for a diverse range of UK and global broadcasters. From cutting-edge documentaries like returning BBC1 series The Met: Policing London, Sky Documentaries’ recent feature Michael X: Hustler, Revolutionary, Outlaw, to premium history and art like BBC2 landmarks Blair & Brown: The New Labour Revolution and Channel 4’s Pride: Freedom: 50 Years of Pride.

This role is for researchers with an interest in documentaries to explore and learn about the craft of finding archive - the pre-shot footage, stills and audio from libraries and personal collections which forms the backbone of many documentaries. Over a period of months, the trainees will explore the role archive footage plays in bringing documentary films to life and the extra dimensions and texture it can bring to a story.


What you will learn

  • Techniques for finding, using and licensing this footage for use across output from shortform programmes (including daytime output) to longform documentary
  • An introduction to this fascinating role, a profession in its own right
  • The craft of archive research: researching, finding and clearing archive for use on BBC Studios productions
  • How to take a brief, asking the right questions to get the best results
  • Working to tight deadlines and prioritising a shifting workload
  • Negotiating rates for using archive material
  • Managing a budget
  • Developing a working knowledge of the principles of copyright law
  • Becoming familiar with footage libraries and services, developing productive working relationships as appropriate


Knowledge, skills, experience

  • This is a training role; no experience of sourcing and clearing archive is required, but you must have a curiosity and enthusiasm for the genre and the part that archive has to play within it
  • An understanding of television and film history and a basic knowledge and interest in audiovisual collections around the world
  • A basic knowledge of film / videotape / digital file formats and their use in a television broadcast environment
  • An ability and interest in logging, shotlisting, indexing and labelling archive files for easy use and access by colleagues
  • Working knowledge of excel documents
  • Basic numeracy skills (e.g. to break down Edit Decision Lists, draw up costings, and to use timecodes)
  • The ability to work in a team under pressure, and working to tight deadlines
  • A basic understanding of copyright laws and rights issues and how they apply in a broadcast environment
  • The ability to communicate and interact with individuals, companies and organisations to source archive material, clear copyright and negotiate licensing fees
  • A knowledge of contemporary archive sources such as social media platforms 


To apply

  • Log in to your Creative Access account or register today to apply for this opportunity
  • Upload your CV and cover letter as one document (applications without a tailored cover letter will not be accepted)
  • Once submitted, you can no longer amend your application, so proof-read carefully
  • Do not contact the company directly
  • Please email any queries about this role to Creative Access at this address:


We welcome applications from individuals from groups that are under-represented in the creative industries. This includes, but is not limited to, Black, Asian and ethnically diverse candidates, people with disabilities and individuals from lower socioeconomic backgrounds.

The successful candidate for this opportunity will also participate in a Creative Access support programme that sits alongside workplace training. This includes a programme of induction training, monthly masterclasses, wellbeing support, buddying / mentoring and more.

Years of experience

  • Entry

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