The Record Office is open to anyone who wants to use the archives. Most of the services are free, but we do charge for some additional services and help.
When you visit us you will be asked to sign in to confirm your agreement to abide by a few basic rules, such as using pencils only in the searchroom and handling documents with care.
You will then be able to enter the searchroom to conduct your research.
Parking at the Record Office
A limited car park is available on weekdays, which must be booked in advance. A fee of £3.75 is charged for morning or afternoon, or £7.50 for the whole day. On arrival, please pull over in the side road next to the Record Office and collect a token from reception before proceeding to the car park.
There is one allocated space for disabled drivers located directly behind the Record Office. This must be booked before visiting.
On Saturdays, parking is available on a first-come first-served basis - please pay the car park attendant at the barrier on arrival (cash only).
What to bring
What to bring to the Record Office
- Reader's ticket - You will need to bring your County Archives Research Network card (CARN).
If you don’t already have a ticket, please bring proof of identity which includes your address and signature. A driving licence is ideal, or a household utility bill with a debit card. Unfortunately we cannot accept UK passports alone as proof of identity, because they do not show your address. Readers' tickets are issued free of charge.
- Paper and pencils - We only allow pencils to be used in the searchroom to protect the documents.
- Laptop - You can use a laptop in the searchroom.
- Cameras - Cameras can be used, but we charge a daily fee and some collections are subject to restrictions. You will also need to complete a copyright declaration form.
Record Office facilities
Tea, coffee and hot chocolate are available in the visitors' tea room and a small selection of confectionery can be purchased from reception. You are welcome to eat your own food in the visitors' tea room.
We have toilets and baby changing facilities within the Record Office building and free Wi-Fi is available for you to use.
We have a shop in our reception area where you can purchase a wide range of local history material, including books, CDs, DVDs, reproductions of photographs and documents.
Record Office accessibility
- Access is available to all parts of the building open to the public.
- Disabled parking booked in advance.
- Microfilm and fiche readers with large magnification are available in the searchroom, as are large print versions of the searchroom information leaflets.
- Portable hearing induction loops are available in the reception area and in the searchroom.
- Seats that can be adjusted in height are available in the searchroom.
- Disabled toilet.
If there are any other ways we may be of assistance, please contact us before your visit to discuss them.