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11 June 2015

Originally issued by England’s King John in June 1215 to prevent civil war between the king and his barons, Magna Carta has become a world-famous symbol of justice, fairness, and human rights. Having inspired and encouraged movements for freedom and constitutional government for hundreds of years, the four remaining copies of the document have been awarded ‘Memory of the World’ status by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The best surviving copy, which is currently on exhibition in Britain’s Salisbury Cathedral to commemorate its 800-year anniversary, is stored in a glass display cabinet along with an Onset HOBO® MX1101 Bluetooth Temperature and Relative Humidity data logger which protects it by monitoring the cabinet’s environment around the clock.

“Preserving the text is of paramount importance,” said Emily Naish, Archivist, Salisbury Cathedral. “Excessive humidity can cause parchment to buckle as it tries to revert to its natural shape. The parchment can expand while the ink remains static, causing ink to lift from the text. As the display in which Magna Carta is displayed has large glass windows, it is prone to these kinds of damaging fluctuations in humidity.”

Naish said, however, that as the display cabinet is sealed and protected by alarm systems, there was no way of constantly monitoring temperature and humidity without going through a time-consuming and complicated process of switching off the alarms and accessing the case.

To address these issues, the cathedral’s exhibition team installed the MX1101 logger which they purchased through Onset’s UK distributor, Tempcon Instrumentation Limited.

The self-contained wireless data logger, which works with Onset’s free HOBOmobile app for logger setup and data management, enables Cathedral staff to access the environmental data anytime from a mobile device having to open the cabinet – making the HOBO MX1101 the ideal choice for use in the restricted access conditions of the Cathedral.

“The HOBO MX1101 is an ideal solution for us to protect such an important historical artefact as Magna Carta,” said Naish. “It’s great that I can check the current conditions at a glance, and have the ability to access historical data without interfering with the exhibit.”

To learn more about the HOBO MX1101 Temperature/ Relative Humidity data logger, visit

For more information, please contact:

Tempcon Instrumentation Ltd 
Unit 19 Ford Lane Business Park
Ford Lane
Ford, Nr. Arundel
West Sussex
BN18 0UZ
Tel:  +44 1243 558270
Fax:  +44 1243 558288
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