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Archives Storage and Preservation Division

The work of Archives Storage and Preservation Division encompasses a wide range of areas concerned with protecting the integrity and ensuring the long-term survival of the archives. The National Archives holds many millions of documents and this Division looks after and manages these documents, and is able to retrieve them on demand. There are specific standards for the preservation of archives which we endeavour to meet at all times.


The principal areas of work in this Division are:



Work relating to accommodation includes buildings, maintenance, monitoring of the environment, creating and maintaining databases which allow us to know where every one of the millions of documents in our custody are stored, managing the space and, in conjunction with the Office of Public Works, ensuring that there is sufficient room for annual transfers under the National Archives Act.


The preservation work includes large projects to deal with a backlog of packing to high standards using archival quality materials and also conservation repair work in our modern studio. Reprographics include both work which responds to the daily demands from the public, such as copying archives to print or digital formats, and long-term projects intended to improve the preservation of the original documents by protecting them from handling by creating surrogates in hardcopy, digital or microfilm formats. Our staff provide services to the public and other staff by producing all documents required from storage and returning them after use, a process tracked using computers to provide a full audit trail. The Division actively promotes disaster prevention through good practice in all of the above and maintains a contingency plan for disasters.


The Division is also responsible for some State bodies which have large accumulations of records dating from the 19th century eg the Ordnance Survey and the Valuation Office.


For queries regarding the work of this Division, please contact