Winter RRN Newsletter 2016
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Rapid Response Network Newsletter

Please share this email with colleagues in your organisation, it contains useful links for the RRN and will help to make more people aware of the important resources provided by the network.
We hope this finds you well and that you are all ready for a winter break!  If you or a colleague would like to be more involved with the RRN and develop new skills, please get in touch!

Please do write to us at to submit case studies and information about how you manage your emergency planning; all of this is useful for other members. The RRN kit and training is there for members to prepare for emergencies and hopefully minimise damage to collections. We hope that you won't need to use the kits, but if you do you can find all of the member information on our website Please keep us up-to-date with any changes to the contacts for your organisation by emailing:

Thank you for supporting the RRN; we couldn't function without your important memberships. Regards, RRN Committee

Fail to plan, plan to fail, Icon Care of Collections Group conference report
RRN members, Sharon Connell and Emma Bowron, report on the Icon Care of Collections Group conference held at the British Library in October.
A range of themes were covered by speakers from Harwell Document Restoration Services Ltd, the British Library, Historic Royal Palaces, the Museum of London and independent practitioners. We heard about collaborative approaches to emergency planning and disaster response and how lessons from major disasters can help plug the gaps in our emergency planning and inform novel ways of approaching complex salvage operations, such the Glasgow School of Art fire. Of particular interest were the BL’s sessions on using smart phone technology to store their emergency plan as well as Historic Royal Palaces’ approach to emergency preparedness, culminating in a major incident test. Lunchtime sessions included a demonstration of the BL’s smartphone emergency plan and tours of the emergency equipment stores which were reassuring similar to those of RRN (with the addition of knee pads in the kit!).
We thought it was a well-structured training day with a lot of useful information being disseminated. Key ideas and tips that we came away with:
  1. Simple things like the pocket salvage guide are a great idea if funding is tight – you can download a template (and other resources) here to make your own.
  2. Good communication between the emergency team members, joint training and a standardised approach – which are especially challenging if you have multiple sites - are really important and necessary. Historic Royal Palaces used a framework to facilitate joint working called JESIP, the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme in their emergency simulation.
  3. Understanding what your tipping point is and when to get help and where – who controls the money in a disaster situation; who has the contacts for materials and who is doing your PR? The importance of building and maintaining relationships with suppliers can never be underestimated – you never know what time of the day or night you will need them. A version of Emma Dadson’s presentation, including the immensely helpful ready reckoner for making triage and salvage decisions, is available here.
  4. The BL’s smart phone plan looked like a good way to go. This development included an overhaul of the emergency plan’s structure – now in three colour-coded sections for ease of access, which could of course be applied to any plan. The new content is stored as pdfs, arranged using ES File Explorer. Obviously this took quite a lot of resource to develop and presents an ongoing commitment in terms of the technological support but may be a way forward in the future.
  5. Health and safety considerations should not be overlooked in an emergency situation: have the correct PPE; water-logged objects are heavy; monitor for asbestos and mould.

RRN Committee positions
Due to other commitments our Treasurer, Suzanne Dalewicsz-Kitto will be stepping aside in the near future for an undetermined time.  Katherine Coussement, will also be standing down due to a change of role after her work is completed on the new RRN website launch.  We are looking for new committee members to help steer the direction of the RRN. This is a modest commitment for ordinary committee members and a chance to influence the regional agenda in emergency planning – no committee experience is necessary. We meet three times per year and going forward, meetings will increasingly be done from the desktop so no need to leave the office! The Treasurer position requires simple management of the annual membership fees and insurance – good organisational skills are all that’s needed. Please circulate this call to staff you think would be interested and send expressions of interest to

Website update
The website redesign continues apace with the framework and RRN logo agreed. The hosting has shifted from the Vintage Carriages Trust and we would like to say a huge thank you to Philip Walton for his sterling support since the RRN’s inception.  Please remember to download from the members’ area the latest version of contact numbers for accessing the kits and put them in your plan.

Are you testing your emergency plan?

If so, RRN would like to hear from you! We would like to share experience of testing emergency procedues using this newsletter with our members. If you undertake training in house with your staff let us know how you ran it, how it worked and whether it made you rethink any of your procedures as a result. If you would like to share your training case studies in the RRN newsletter please email
Please forward this email on!
If you know of a colleague who might want to be more involved in the RRN for career development, or who may need to know about the training and resources we provide please send this email on.
From everyone at RRN we hope that you have a lovely winter break and wish you all the best for 2017


The RRN is about working co-operatively and sharing experience for the benefit of all members.  Don’t wait to be invited! Please send your submissions for future newsletters to:

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We won't respond to this in an emergency though so make sure you have the RRN contacts handy.
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Rapid Response Network Yorkshire · West Yorkshire, United Kingdom · Leeds, England LS9 7LN · United Kingdom

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