With all content in the public domain, British Pathé offers an invaluable resource to teachers and the general public alike, as well to a vast number of media bodies. Pathe wanted to create a new public-facing website for launch in Januray 2012 and asked Big Eye Deers to be a part of it. After developing a new concept for a refined user experience, it was our aim to turn Pathe’s new dream site into a reality without sacrificing the rock-solid performance and reliability of the existing Pathé site.
A search-driven seamless user experience was core to the success of British Pathé’s new website and Solr Search was a key element for us to implement in delivering this. Being an open source search engine, Solr enabled us to provide users with Google-like search functionality, ideal for high traffic and large data sets. It also allowed for implementation of facets providing users with quick and simple ways to drill down to results they really want to see, enabling website users to find stills or videos much quicker and with far more accurate search results than mysql queries. It was also imperative to offer multiple levels of user access for visitors, with privileges added to logged in users, and educational users being provided with bespoke Workspaces to support them in their teaching. To achieve this, we implemented a large number of bespoke plugins, custom jquery functions and ajax, all working together to provide a highly interactive and intuitive environment for users to create highly customisable workspaces.
Big Eye Deers built and managed the new website from initial UX to completion and launch within 12 months. Within a week of the live site launch downloads from the site tripled, and facebook likes quickly reached into the 1000’s with the social media plugins. We are extremely pleased with the site and so are British Pathe, scooping the FOCAL 2012 award for footage library of the year. Our award-winning design and technology has put British Pathe at the forefront of media archiving and we’re proud to be a part of their success. Pathe’s subscribers now include 50% of UK schools, over 100 museums and BBC News.