Open Data from our collections

Unlocked padlock. Image released under CC0 licence via

Like any museum, one of our core functions is to make our collections accessible. This applies to the digital data about our collections as much as it does to the physical objects themselves. At present, the main means of accessing our digitised collections is through our Search Collections and our Image Store. But there are many people who would like to use our digitised collections in other ways, whether through analysis of the data we hold, or by re-using this information for other purposes. In recognition of this, we have just released several datasets relating to our collections, along with accompanying images, which are available to download via the Open Data section of our Image Store.

There are eight datasets, containing over 4,400 records in total. The data has been released as Comma Separated Value (CSV) files, which can be opened in any spreadsheet program. The records are a selection taken from those used on our present online collections. Although this only represents a fraction of our total records, this data can be considered ‘clean’ — that is, to the best of our knowledge, the data can be considered accurate, can be illustrated, should be relatively easy to understand, and should not infringe the intellectual property rights of any third party.

Terms of use

The collection datasets are released under Creative Commons Zero (CC0) licences. This means that we do not claim any rights over the information released, and it may be freely copied, adapted, and re-used.

The accompanying images are released under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0) licence, which is more restrictive. This allows use of the images providing the following conditions are met:

  • They are attributed (ie. credited to ‘The Royal Pavilion and Museums, Brighton & Hove’
  • They are not used for commercial purposes
  • The images are not altered, or transformed in any way

The data

The datasets are taken from eight of our collections:

Archaeology (17 records)

Costume (193 records)

Craft (33 records)

Decorative Art (1914)

Fine Art (422)

Local Photographs (1777)

Natural Science (40)

Toys (41)

Related images are gathered in a zip file. A link to this can be found by each dataset in the Image Store.

Feedback please!

Open data is a new area of activity for us, and if it is to become part of our regular activity, it will require a significant investment in time and resources. We need your feedback.

  • Is this data useful?
  • What collections would you like to see more of?
  • Are there any other datasets we might hold that you would like to see released?
  • Is there anything we could do to make the data easier to understand?
  • How will you use the data?

Please comment via the form below. I would like to publish a FAQ on this later, so please also indicate if you are happy for your comment or question to be posted anonymously.

And if you are looking for an incentive to build things with this data, we will be releasing final details of our New Cabinets for New Curiosities project very soon.

Kevin Bacon
Digital Development Officer [contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]

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