Lord Robert's Workshop and Blindcraft, Dundee (formerly the Royal Dundee Institution for the Blind)

Scope and Content

The collection contains:

  • Royal Dundee Institute for the Blind 1892-1937
    • Reports.
    • Finance.
    • Administration and Correspondence.
  • Lord Roberts Workshop Dundee 1919-2010
    • Minutes.
    • Committee Minutes.
    • Reports and Administration.
    • Publications.
    • Photographs and Negatives.
  • Articles and Publications relating to the Blind and their organisations 1890-1932

Administrative / Biographical History

Administrative / Biographical History: The Dundee Institution for the Blind can trace its origin to 1865 when Mrs Frances Mollison purchased Dallfield House in order to establish an institution for the blind. In 1869 it finally opened as the Dundee Institution for the Blind and it provided work, support and education for men and women who were blind or partially blind. In 1885 the new building on Magdalen Green was opened and in 1916 it was renamed the Royal Dundee Institution for the Blind. The name was changed again in 1986 to Royal Dundee Blindcraft Products thus reflecting its increasingly commercial nature.
In the 1920s, a Lord Roberts Workshop was established in Dundee to provide employment for disabled ex-servicemen. Although the Lord Roberts Workshop and the Royal Dundee Institution for the Blind both primarily made furniture they were independent from each other until 1993 when they amalgamated. The new company was called Dovetail Enterprises and based itself in a new factory unit in Dunsinane Avenue in the Dunsinane Industrial Estate in Dundee.


Records are arranged chronologically within series.

Access Information

Open for consultation subject to preservation requirements. Access must also conform to the restrictions of the Data Protection Act and any other appropriate legislation.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Gladys Noble, a former employee of Dovetail Enterprises. (Accession number 2010/381 and 394)

Other Finding Aids

Descriptive list.

Alternative Form Available

No known copies.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

The records are on paper / negatives / photographs / 35mm slides

Archivist's Note

Fonds level description compiled by Karyn Williamson, volunteer 2010.

Conditions Governing Use

Reproduction is available subject to preservation requirements. Charges are made for this service, and copyright and other restrictions may apply.

Custodial History

The items were rescued by Gladys Noble from being destroyed, and she managed to keep them safe for a number of years on the Dovetail premises. The storage area where they were held was in the part of the Dovetail building that was to be rented out so the items could no longer remain where they were. At this point they were donated to the University of Dundee Archive Services.


None expected.

Location of Originals

The material is original.


Personal Names

Geographical Names