A new multimedia venture has launched bringing content from more than 1000 cultural organisations across Europe together in a free online resource.

The British Library is amongst the institutions that have signed up to the new European online library called Europeana.

The European Commission and the Louvre Museum are also to add content.

The ambition is for internet users to be able to access more than two million books, maps, recordings, photographs, archive documents, paintings and films.

The project was created by the European Commission and is run by the European Digital Library Foundation, and will launch in 2010.