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New OPAC now available

The new BLARS OPAC is here!

Our readers may remember that some time ago we promised a new on-line public access catalogue (OPAC) to replace the one frozen in April 2007 when we upgraded our cataloguing software. This proved to be much more difficult than we anticipated. We are still having technical difficulties - the system is very slow - and we are working to overcome these problems. However, on the grounds that something is better than nothing we thought the time had come to make the system available to a wider public and have put a link to our new OPAC on our website under ‘Search our catalogues’.

The new OPAC looks rather different to the old one (which can still be accessed via our website) and can take some getting used to. We take a lot of care to index our catalogues to make sure you find the material most relevant to your research. The keywords with which we tag the catalogues conform to certain conventions just like the index to a book. For example if you are looking for Fred Bloggs he will appear in the index as Bloggs, Fred. We have provided as much assistance on the site as we can to help you use the index keywords effectively and using the list button will enable you to see what index terms are available.

We are sorry that this project has taken so long and that the waiting is still not yet over. We are happy to say that in the meantime we have been steadily adding our old catalogues to the system. All the parish church, parish council and many other catalogues are now available on-line for the first time, and nearly 60% of our catalogues are included. One other word of warning— the system is bang up to date and therefore you may find references to material that is still being catalogued which may be subject to revision!

If you have any queries about the way that the system works, or just cannot find what you are looking for please contact us.