Major collections

  • Appleby Guitar Collection, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • Early Printed Music Collection, Birmingham Conservatoire
  • Spencer Collection, Royal Academy of Music

Birmingham Conservatoire, Birmingham

  • Early Printed Music Collection
    • Miscellaneous collection of scores and parts published ca. 1700-1850 by composers such as Handel, Haydn and Hummell. Albums of songs, piano and guitar music by minor composers of the period.

Royal Academy of Music, London

  • Spencer Collection
    • Robert Spencer (1932-1997) was connected with the lute as a performer, scholar, teacher and collector of instruments and of manuscripts. He was well known as a soloist and as an ensemble performer and first achieved an international reputation accompanying Alfred Deller, an artistic relationship which extended over many years. He was the much-loved professor of early English song at the Royal Academy of Music, and taught here for nearly a quarter of a century. Robert Spencer's important collection of books, manuscripts and instruments was built up over many years. He used it as a working library to enable him to carry out the detailed scholarly research which underpinned his performances and teaching activities. The collection was acquired by the Academy in 1998 with the help of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, Mrs Jill Spencer, the Britten-Pears Foundation and contributors to a public appeal. As well as an invaluable collection of 16th and 17th century music for lute and guitar, now in the Academy's Library, the Spencer Collection also contains a fine collection of 17th century engravings of performers and venues. Items on display include a Renaissance-style lute by Venere, Padua 1584 (with original back and modern reconstruction neck and table), the Margaret Board lute book of c.1610 and the Mynshall lute book of 1597.