History of the Forum

In 1998 a group of Further Education Reprographic Managers in Southern England began to meet on a regular, informal basis with the main aim of sharing good practice.

The agenda at these meetings covered topics such as photocopier contracts, paper purchasing, copyright issues, digital print provision and cost recovery.

Similarly, for a number of years in the Yorkshire and Humberside region, FE print managers were also meeting together on an ad-hoc basis for very much the same reasons.

Generally meetings were quite well attended and then almost by accident the two groups quite independently looking for input to future meetings approached Xerox as a potential host and sponsor.

As a result of this approach to Xerox two conferences were arranged in November 2000, one at Wokefield Park, Reading (a Xerox Training Centre) and the other at North Lindsey College, Scunthorpe. These events were very successful but more importantly it brought the two groups of managers together for the first time.

Everyone attending these two events were invited to consider the benefits of amalgamating the two groups and forming a national FE Reprographic Forum. The consensus was that such a move would be very welcome and could only positively support the work and activities of anyone with a college print manager responsibility.

As a result of this decision invitations were sent to all College Reprographic Managers inviting them to meet at North East Surrey College of Technology (Nescot) on 9 April 2001 to begin the process of formalising the forum. In order to facilitate this process an Acting Management Group of Jon Larsson (Nescot), Lesley Mulley (Barnet College), Dave Pavely (Westminster Kingsway College) and David Simons (North Lindsey College) offered to conduct the business of the Forum and organise events for one year until a first Annual General Meeting could be held (provisionally arranged for April 2002).

After a very successful year the Forum held its Inaugural Annual General Meeting in Northampton on 21/22 March 2002.

In 2003 a termly newsletter was distributed to member colleges. Developments and enhancements to the website allowed for a significant amount of archive materials, papers and presentations being made available for member access. The aim to have at least 100 member colleges accessing the discussion board was achieved in 2004.

In 2013 the Forum became known as "The Reprographic Forum" to be more inclusive for schools, universities and other education organisations. 2013 also saw the launch of the new website.