Past Lives Project

We were so pleased to be asked to help in this wonderful project. It epitomizes the work that we undertake for our own clients, but on a much larger scale and in a way that can be shared and enjoyed by everyone. Well done Past Lives!

In each region of the project Past Lives coordinators ask the public to gather their amateur cine film home movies, photos, local music and oral history together to share with the world. The project works with film depositors and participants coming together to make new films and music scores, with copying and digitizing of the material at no cost to the depositors. In each region there is a grand finale to show the local movies and the original Past Lives of the Midlands which inspired the project.

The project is partnered with archives and museums across the region to support and create local archives. Film donated to the project will be digitized and stored at MACE, photographs will be digitized and stored at Picture the Past and oral history will be stored at EMOHA. A digital archive of the project including films, photos and oral history will be available online and with each partner museum.

You can help the project by sharing the message that we need cine footage, photos and memories from the regions, email us at [email protected]

Working with MACE in 2011-12 artists and musicians  from FreeFall Arts created and toured Past Lives Film from home cinefilm footage of the Midlands. The 2011/12 tour was incredibly successful and we were invited by Arts Council England to create a touring film and music participatory project, and working with funding from Hertiage Lottery Fund the project aims to highlight the need to preserve cinefilm which is rapidly deteriorating and to encourage the public to be creatively engaged with heritage and the arts.

Past Lives Project

Another piece of priceless history saved…..

Van-der-Waals-Portugals-War-in-AngolaWow! We have just uncovered an important piece of history that was recorded on old Reel to Reel audio tape from the 1960’s. It’s an account of the Skirmishes during the guerrilla campaign against Portuguese rule in Angola. Another piece of priceless history saved for one of our lucky customers !!!

If you are interested in this conflict you can find more about it at this website…






CD & DVD Care and Archiving


Many of you will have precious photos, videos or audio recordings stored on CD or DVD. These forms of storage are fine as long as you take precautions to protect them as they are NOT as indestructible as many people believe! In fact the information they contain can quite easily be lost if they are not handled and looked after carefully.

Many of our customers believe that it is the bottom of the disk (the shiny side) that is most vulnerable to damage and is the area that contains the information. After all, this is the side where the laser reads its information from. But the actual layer that contains the precious information sits on the TOP of the plastic disk, the printed side, directly beneath a very thin and vulnerable layer of lacquer! Scratch damage to this side of the disk will almost certainly result in lost or unplayable data and put the disk beyond repair! …Continue Reading

Holiday Apartment to Rent

Apartment Rental

4  Star Hotel Complex – Praia da Rocha

If any of our clients, friends or family are interested in taking a holiday in Portugal, we have a lovely apartment out there that we are happy to let out.

The apartment is situated in the stylish 4 Star Oceano Atlantico Hotel complex, just 800 mtrs from one of the most beautiful beaches on the Algarve and just minutes away from the city and attractions.


This apartment is situated in a lovely quiet location just a kilometer from the center of Portimao with it’s quaint shops, malls, gardens and waterfront restaurants.

Half a kilometer to the South and you’ll find yourself on the bustling Praia da Rocha strip with it’s beautiful beach, marina, and a variety of popular restaurants, bars, nightclubs and even a Casino! Or you explore the history of this area in nearby Medieval Fort of Santa Catarina that overlooks the modern Marina that is home to millionaires and well-to-do entrepreneurs.

To the West is the Pestana Alto Country Club & Golf Course, one of many that are in the area.


Please feel free to contact us from this website


1960’s Record Recording Booths

A popular seaside novelty
A popular seaside novelty

Remember these?

Back in the day (1960’s) a popular seaside family attraction would be for a family to find one of these recording booths and record a short message for family members or friends as an alternative to a ‘postcard’. It was also a fun to have the family sing their favorite tunes and capture a moment in time – often used at future family get-togethers to portray an ’embarrassing moment’ in time!

We get lots of these old recordings in for transfer to CD or MP3 and some of the recordings are surprisingly good considering!

Film and Audio Recordings

filmcareCaring for your old Recordings

Your typical Cinefilm, video and magnetic tape sound recordings are mostly made of quite fragile polymers (plastics) and, as such, have a finite life span. Some will take longer than others to decay and this usually depends upon how well they have been stored and looked after. If you have not already transferred these recordings to a digital format, now is definitely the time to do it as these items are likely to be coming to the end of their stable life span!

If you want to try to keep these items safe for a bit longer, they will need particularly careful handling and storage, but digital copies should be made as soon as possible and a copy stored which is for archive use only and should not be used for general viewing/listening. …Continue Reading

The Problem with Video Tapes


We get lots of video tapes in for transfer to DVD these days, almost as much now as the older cine film format! Unfortunately, many of the tapes we receive have not fared as well as the older but more robust cine film.

Most of the problems we see could have been avoided if the films had been stored in more favorable environmental conditions. However, many of these old tapes eventually find themselves being stored in an attic, damp basement, or a cold wet outbuilding where the extremes of temperature and damp conditions provide an ideal environment for mold production. Depending on the type of mold, the damage done to the surface structure of the tape can be sever and render any attempt at recovery useless. …Continue Reading

Record Cleaning

To get the best out of your records you need to keep them clean. A clean record will not only sound better, but last longer. In fact, the playing of soiled records not only risks causing permanent damage to the vinyl, but will also wear out those expensive stylus much more quickly too. This is why we always clean our records prior to any transfer as there is absolutely no sense in risking damage and getting an awful sounding transfer to boot!

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Tips on Recording your Family Stories

If you have elderly family members who love to reminisce about “the old days”, then you have a truly wonderful resource of your family history. Take the opportunity to make the most of their memories and record them for future generations to enjoy, otherwise those opportunities will simply pass away and you will be left wishing you had taken just a little time and effort to record them.


Nowadays, family stories rarely get handed down from generation to generation as they used to. In the past our children would gather around and listen attentively as their family elders recalled stories from their past. But now we seem to be far too busy with school and after-school activities, work and social interaction to be able to make time for these precious moments together. Often we don’t even live near our families, and as life moves on, family members fade away, and one day we suddenly realize that much of heritage has faded away with them.

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From Analogue to Digital

Recording our families activities and history has always been a priority for humans, no matter where or when you lived. You can find the earliest recordings on cave walls and even as graffiti etched on Roman buildings hundreds of years ago!


As human beings, it’s common for us to want to record some kind of visual diary of our lives to save for future generations. Before film and video, there was no real way to capture the reality of life. Still life drawings and paintings were the best we could do. These often had to be further enhanced by family bibles, diaries and word of mouth in order to get any real idea of what life was like for your ancestors. How much easier will it be for our future generations to see what our lives were like today?

In this Digital age, there are so many options available to record and share your memories. Recordings that were once limited to clumsy analogue forms of media like VHS and Cine Film can now be stored digitally on numerous devices for instant access. And best of all, this data can be shared with family and friends all around the world with the click of a button via such popular media sharing networks as Facebook, Twitter etc.


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