Digitisation Fund

BFI’s Unlocking Film Heritage Digitisation Fund

Applications to Phase Three of the Unlocking Film Heritage Digitisation Fund have now closed.

We are working to make our film heritage available for everyone in the UK to enjoy by investing in digitisation, preservation, interpretation and access with the ultimate goal of making all of the UK’s screen heritage accessible to the public digitally. The Digitisation Fund has up to £5m over three years to support the digitisation of films from significant public and rights holders’ collections across the UK.

By digitising our heritage we will ensure that the people of the UK, filmmakers, educationalists, researchers and other users can access and enjoy the full range of British filmmaking, regardless of where they live or where that film heritage is held. This unprecedented access will transform our understanding of the shape, history and diversity of film and TV in Britain.

Coronation Celebrations in Burgess Hill (1953)

Coronation Celebrations in Burgess Hill (1953)
Credit: Screen Archive South East

The Way We Live (1946)

The Way We Live (1946)
Credit: BFI National Archive

Our Digitisation Fund will result in a significant increase in public access to film and TV titles across the UK. To achieve this goal a total of £5 million is being made available over the length of the programme for the digitising of 5,000 titles from external collections.

Heather Stewart, BFI Creative Director, Programme comments:

“Our Unlocking Film Heritage programme will result in a radical change in public access to British film and TV. We are hugely excited to be able to digitise 5,000 titles through this fund, in addition to the 5,000 from the BFI National Archive. Many of these 10,000 titles have been unknown and unseen for decades.”

The digitisation fund will support technical costs of digitisation and will prioritise material that will appeal to new and diverse audiences, and represent and relate to all areas of the UK.

The titles to be digitised must have originated on film. These will include films from 1895 onwards and comprise documentaries, amateur films, news films, films originally designed as public records, political films, sponsored and industrial films, advertisements, feature films, short fiction, animation, artists’ moving image and TV programmes.

There are two strands of funding available:

  • Strand 1 for Commercial Rights Holders
  • Strand 2 for Significant Public Collections

Contacting us and FAQs

For enquiries please contact the team on ufh@bfi.org.uk

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  • Strategic priority three

    Strategic priority three

    Unlocking film heritage for everyone in the UK to enjoy by investing in preservation, digitisation, interpretation and access.

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  • BFI National Archive

    BFI National Archive

    We care for one of the greatest collections of film and television in the world.

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