Attention designers: are there not enough hours in the day? Do you need help researching the backgrounds for your designs, or finding material to incorporate into your set? Could you or your design assistants (if you have any!) be making better use of your time than hunting through a library or surfing the net?

Snifferdog could be just what you need: its role is to provide intelligent and relevant research material for theatre designers, directors, production managers - indeed, anyone who ever wished they had a research assistant!

Snifferdog was founded by Ros Morgan-Jones, a stage manager of ten years experience who has worked on shows ranging from the fringe to the West End to the Royal Shakespeare Company. She left stage management to complete a two year university course studying Furniture and Design History. "During that time, designers I knew started asking me to research projects," she explains. "That proved so successful that it has now grown into this new business."

Amongst the first to use Snifferdog’s services was set designer Tom Pye, then designing the new Broadway production of Fiddler On The Roof. Snifferdog gathered together hundreds of images of Eastern Europe in 1910, covering everything from the ceilings of wooden synagogues to period drinking vessels. "It was a great help to work with Ros in this way," Pye recalls. "I sent her a list of things to chase up and a couple of days later she presented me with a file of images and background information. It saved me a lot of time and provided me with a wealth of useful material." Pye was subsequently nominated for the 2004 Best Scenic Design Tony Award for his design.

"We aim to be of help to designers working on all styles and scales of productions," explains Morgan-Jones. "Most designers find that there aren’t enough hours in the day to spend in the library or on the net and, even if they have assistants, those assistants are probably better at doing design work or are more use in the studio.

"On the other hand, we offer excellent research skills honed over many years of working with creative teams on shows and while studying at university - plus good contacts with, and access to, relevant libraries and museums."

Snifferdog is a dedicated service that can be used for only an hour or two to provide a small detail, or for a longer period to give an in-depth survey. The company’s rates are competitive, and its services are available now.

Snifferdog can be contacted on +44 (0)20 7288 1652, +44(0)7979 591895 or by email to ros@snifferdog.co.uk.