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PastView Essentials

PastView Essentials

Simplified system features & themed website – For simple choice and flexibility

Our PastView Essentials package contains the core features needed to get your collections uploaded, managed and published online, with plenty of storage and a great range of flexible optional extras. Our out of the box package offers a Simplified management system and themed website designed to perfectly suit photographic collection holders.

Calculate the cost of your PastView package

Key features of PastView Essentials

5k Uploads by TownsWeb
10gb £12.00 p/m storage bundles
1 License £69.99 p/m user access bundle
Simplified System Limited management features
Publishing Pre-themed website

Showcase your digital collection to online audiences

With a pre-themed mobile compliant website, to include Modern, Historic, Arts and Military, it’s easy to get online with Essentials. With the option to select your logo, heading and colour scheme, as well as other simple feature choices, PastView Essentials has everything you need to get your digital collections up and running quickly.

What’s included with PastView Essentials

Perfect for small to medium sized digital collections. Style your themed website and take advantage of a number of truly great features. Get your data online quickly and easily and enjoy the benefits that come with simplified choice and flexibility.

from £6,995

+ £79.99 per month
(Single licence & 10 GB storage)

Key Features

  • Preconfigured website theme for quick online user-access
  • Reduced management features for simplified use
  • Scalable solution with uncapped storage limitations
  • Simple item upload, editing and management
  • Secure off-site cloud backup
  • Protect your items using watermarks
  • High-Res zoom using PageExplorer
  • Flexible revenue generation capabilities (digital downloads, prints, protected access)
Compare all PastView Packages Compare all PastView packages

The Essentials Package

Included FeaturesAdd-On Features

Pre-Set Attributes / Image Details

When uploading your images they are assigned ‘Attributes’ (the details that best identify and describe them). For example, attributes could include the date, original reference number, photographer and location. All of these attributes then become searchable terms, thereby enhancing the discoverability of your online items. With PastView Essentials, you can take advantage of a number of predefined attributes and attribute sets in order to organise, enhance and make searchable your digital collections. Storing textual data against each of your items aids consistency and search productivity.

Item Management

Based on an item being around 2MB, you can upload up to 5,000 items equating to 10GB of storage with PastView Essentials. 10GB of storage is a lot of space, so you’re going to need to be able to manage those individual items and decide how they will be identified and organised. At the point of upload, your items can be allocated attributes and attribute sets, to help gather items into multiple searchable collections. You can continue to add items over time and decide when and where these will become available to your audiences, perhaps releasing them as part of a digital or physical exhibition.

Collection Management

It’s important that you have ultimate control over your content and how it works for you, so with PastView Essentials the management of your digital collection is in your capable hands. After the initial PastView upload, you can continue adding items over time. Organising items into collections and sub-collections and assigning attributes is easy. You can publish your ‘hidden’ digital collections whenever you are ready by simply toggling from ‘hidden’ to ‘visible’.


Digital collections are vast and wonderfully diverse, but this can make connecting items across collections a tricky business. Your users might want to find information about a specific composer, artist or other influential person, but you also know you have a huge amount of varied and supporting material they might find both fascinating and useful. Here’s where tagging comes in. With PastView Essentials you can tag items in your collections with particular names and details, so that searches can trawl and return every related item.

Simple Watermarks - Protecting your Images

Select to add a standard watermark across your images and immediately secure them online, protecting them against copyright infringement and digitally stamping ownership by removing unrestricted access. With PastView Essentials you can configure watermarking during the installation of your data. This is then automatically applied to each and every one of your items, reducing the risk of them being used and shared without permission.

Optical Character Recognition

PastView Essentials' inbuilt optical character recognition module provides a credit-based solution for making typed text searchable. By selecting OCR during the initial upload stage, images will be rendered and any text found will be stored against each item. This allows users to perform a search through your website for the content of a document, rather than merely a name or date. OCR will then compare this content against the items in your collection and return any that match, taking your user to the page they are looking for with the word or phrase highlighted automatically.

Page Explorer and High Res Zoom

Page Explorer is PastView Essentials' core image viewer. Perfect for photographs, as well as large scale images, such as maps, enabling users to view every intricate detail through effortless high resolution zooming in incredibly fine detail. Simply hover the cursor over an area using a mouse and double click, or pinch-and-zoom on smart phones and tablets. Whatever device your users engage with, their experience will always be of the highest quality. Panning across images is also easy and intuitive: just click and drag with a mouse or touch and drag on touchscreen devices.

Digital Downloads

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to revenue generation modules

Generating income through an offer of ‘image digital downloads’ is PastView’s most popular and profitable revenue method amongst our many users. By default, every digital item held within PastView Essentials, is published to your website ‘free of charge’ - meaning members of the public can search, browse and view your collections and items without making a payment. However, you may decide to impose a fee for members of the public to access some or all of your items. Setting prices and enabling ‘digital downloads’ within or across collections is as simple as selecting an item, choosing a price and clicking save!

Physical Print Requests

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to revenue generation modules

Perfect for generating revenue from photographic collections, this feature enables your users to purchase glossy physical prints in size A5, A4 and A3 and is a great way to extend your income generation methods. And don’t worry if you are unable to provide a print fulfilment service in-house. TownsWeb Archiving can optionally take care of this for you by accepting the order, and then locating, printing and despatching the print(s) directly to your customer. All you need to consider is what to set the profit margin to!

Protected Access

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to revenue generation modules

Restricting access to specific groups is possible using our Protected Access module. Perhaps you only wish to grant access to your digital archive to an existing list of subscribers or employees? Perhaps you would like a “Members Only Area”? This module allows specific groups of users to be managed , meaning that when a user enters their own secure credentials, only then will they gain access to your online collections.

Do you need greater control over the management and publishing of your digital collections?

Essentials Pro offers the full management system with a themed website, the ability to upload audio-visual content and even more publishing features.

We can import your data

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to data imports

The ability to add further items through PastView Essentials is entirely possible through your admin interface. If you have a larger number of items and would like a professional import workflow for your data, we will be happy to arrange this process for you. This can either be done during initial setup or later on, as your digital collections grow and further digitisation projects are scheduled. Check out our Online Calculator below to scope a cost for getting online.

Data Storage

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to data storage

PastView Essentials will be preloaded with an allowance of 10 GB of storage space, and for small to medium sized digital collections this should be ample and allows for circa 5,000 items at 2Mb each. But if this isn’t enough, no problem, you can purchase an additional 10 GB storage bundle at any time and continue adding items to your collections for your audiences to engage with and enjoy. This option grants you the freedom to pay for extra space as you need it and not before, allowing for budgets and workflow. Check out our online calculator below to scope a cost for getting online.


1.5 hours remote session included

PastView Essentials provides you with everything you need to get your digital collection uploaded, managed and published online, through a platform that is intuitive and user friendly. However, you might want to take advantage of some additional training in order to get to grips with the many exciting features available. This is always an option and is great for new staff or, indeed, for refreshing and updating the knowledge of existing staff. Check out our online calculator below to scope a cost for getting online.

User Access

Please refer to our Quote Calculator for the costs related to additional licenses

By default, PastView Essentials provides secure access for a single user (1 x licence). For small to medium sized organisations it is often preferred to have a single controller of the digital collections and data. However, should this need change or perhaps you want to take advantage of using volunteers, you may wish to purchase an additional licence(s) and the consultants at PastView can advise you further on this and make the necessary arrangements for you. Check out our online calculator below to scope a cost for getting online.

Calculate the cost of your PastView package

Enter your publishing requirements and tick the box to confirm whether you would like us to be in touch to discuss your requirements further.