Cossar Press Project

Print­ing engi­neers will this week start work on dis­man­tling a unique Cos­sar Press at its long-time base in Crieff, Perthshire, where it print­ed the Strat­hearn Her­ald from 1907 through until 28th March 1991.

The press, which is still in work­ing order, has been gen­er­ous­ly donat­ed to Nation­al Muse­ums Scot­land by its own­er, David Philips. Nation­al Muse­ums Scot­land has put for­ward fund­ing to ensure that the press can be moved safe­ly from its Crieff loca­tion and there­fore saved for the nation. Patrick Mark, chair of the Scot­tish Print­ing Archival Trust said:

The Cos­sar press is a star­tling and unusu­al tech­nol­o­gy, and when Tom Cos­sar devised it at the begin­ning of the twen­ti­eth cen­tu­ry it was ahead of its time. It is a unique exam­ple of Scot­tish inno­va­tion in the print­ing industry.

We are extreme­ly grate­ful to David Philips for donat­ing it to the nation­al col­lec­tions, and to Nation­al Muse­ums Scot­land for their sup­port in ensur­ing its safe removal from the for­mer premis­es of the Strat­hearn Her­ald. We appeal to the pub­lic and the print­ing indus­try for their sup­port in con­serv­ing and restor­ing this won­der­ful machine and trans­port­ing it to Nation­al Muse­ums Scot­land in Edinburgh.

See the arti­cle in the Strat­hearn Her­ald about the ini­tial move.

Once dis­man­tled, the Cos­sar press will move to a Clyde­side ware­house close to the for­mer home of its inven­tor, Tom Cos­sar, of the Gov­an Press. How­ev­er, more funds are need­ed to meet the cost of reassem­bling the press to work­ing con­di­tion and trans­port­ing it on to Edin­burgh. The Scot­tish Print­ing Archival Trust is spear­head­ing the appeal for dona­tions from any indi­vid­ual or organ­i­sa­tion hold­ing feel­ings for the machine’s past and extend­ed lega­cy. For more infor­ma­tion or to donate to this project, please email Helen Williams.