Archives

(updated 16 July 2021)

We are pleased to welcome you back to Lancashire Archives. All visits are by advance appointment only.

Your experience will be slightly different if you have visited us previously, in order to ensure the safety of all our visitors and staff. 

Step 4 of the Roadmap out of lockdown starts on Monday 19 July 2021 when most legal restrictions to control Covid-19 will be lifted. In order to mitigate the risk of both contracting and spreading Covid-19 in Lancashire we will continue to act carefully and remain cautious.

Read the full government guidance on how to stay safe and help prevent the spread from 19 July.

Our staff will:

  • continue to wear a face covering, unless exempt.
  • respect other people's personal space and keep a safe distance
  • use hand sanitiser and wipe down high touch areas
  • keep spaces well ventilated

 We ask customers and visitors to:

  • wear a face covering when moving around the building, unless exempt. Exemptions to wearing a face covering.
  • use hand sanitiser
  • respect other people's personal space and keep to a safe distance
  • avoid visiting while self-isolating or whilst showing any Covid-19 symptoms
  • participate in the NHS Test and Trace scheme

Our opening hours for pre-booked visitors only are:

Tuesday to Friday 9.30am-12.30pm and 1.30pm-4.30pm.

In addition we will open for pre-booked visitors 10.30am-12.30pm and 1.30 -3.30pm on the second Saturday of the month (14 August; 11 September; 9 October; 13 November; 11 December).

The building will close between 12.30pm and 1.30pm each day so that the public areas can be cleaned. There will be no public access to the building during this time.

We will not open until 7pm on Tuesday, however we will review this on a regular basis.

Our copying and enquiry service is still available and our catalogues can be searched online.

We will email you our monthly News from the Archives if you contact archives@lancashire.gov.uk

We're creating a Covid-19 pandemic archive collection so that future generations can understand the effect of Covid-19 on everyday life in Lancashire. Contributions are welcome from all ages including children.

Arrangements for visiting Lancashire Archives

  • All visits are by advance appointment only. See full details in the Further information section.
  • All material must be ordered in advance, including microfilm and microfiche.
  • All payments are cashless and we are sorry that we will be unable to provide change for pay and display parking.
  • All enquiries will be answered from behind a screen. We will be unable to assist with computers and microform readers.
  • The tea room is not available but you can use a water dispenser located in the searchroom.
  • Only one person at a time may access the toilets.

We ask that you will:

  • not visit if you are self-isolating or have symptoms of Covid-19.
  • follow the latest government guidance on the coronavirus.
  • respect all our signage and directions for the safety of yourself and others.
  • observe appropriate distancing.
  • wear a face covering when entering and moving around the record office building unless exempt. Exemptions to wearing a face covering.
  • practise good hygiene including sanitising or washing hands thoroughly when you enter the building and before you leave.

If you prefer not to visit us, our archive enquiry and copying service is operating as usual. Or you may wish to employ a local record agent to carry out research on your behalf. Find a local record agent.

Please read the guidance below to prepare for your visit. Do bear in mind that these arrangements will be kept under review and that the situation may change at short notice.


Further information

Search our LANCAT catalogue or the Lancashire Library catalogue to find the references of the items you would like to see. We are happy to advise you about sources for your research. Please email archives@lancashire.gov.uk and we will email or phone you back. 

We will be open to the public for two sessions each day, morning and afternoon.  You may book up to 4 sessions in one week plus a Saturday, subject to availability. In each half day session there will be 8 spaces for researching original archives; 2 microfilm/microfiche reader spaces; 2 public computer spaces; 1 computer for accessing audio recordings and digital archives.

Please let us know as soon as possible if you have to cancel your booking by email or phoning 01772 533039.

If you already know what material you would like to look at, and you have the full reference numbers from our catalogue, you can complete a booking form giving your preferred dates and sessions and listing all the document reference numbers, titles of books, or details of other material that you would like to see.

Please do not visit until we have confirmed your booking. If no spaces are available that day we need may need ask you for an alternative date or time. We are not always able to process bookings made after 3.30pm the previous day.

If you are not sure what material you need to look at, or if you require advice and guidance on how to proceed with your research, please contact Lancashire Archives before making a booking, and we will help you to identify material that will help you with that.

Please do not visit until we have confirmed your booking. If no spaces are available that day we need may need ask you for an alternative date or time. 

We will send you a booking confirmation which will include:

  • the date and time of your visit
  • how to enter the building
  • your allocated table and locker number
  • confirmation of the archives, books, microform, audio recordings or other requested material which will be available for you
  • how to cancel your booking

Please let us know as soon as possible if you have to cancel your booking by email or phoning 01772 533039.

Before your visit you can register online for a new Archives Card. The old CARN tickets are no longer valid. Please upload a photograph during the online registration process and bring appropriate identification for us to check when you visit so that we can issue your new card.

Please bring your own pencils and paper to write with as we are unable to supply these. Please note that pens are not allowed in the searchroom. You may bring your own laptop or tablet to use; power sockets and Wi-Fi are available free of charge. You may also bring your own camera or phone to photograph documents, but please note that a fee will be payable for this facility. Please bring your own face covering to wear when entering and moving around the building.

We continue to participate in the NHS Test and Trace service. You will be able to download the NHS Covid-19 app and scan a QR code when visiting. The app allows people to report symptoms, order a coronavirus test, check into venues by scanning a QR code and it helps the NHS trace individuals that may have coronavirus. If you cannot, or choose not, to download the app our staff can take your details.

Our building has been designated as Covid-19 secure and we are following Lancashire County Council guidance on safety and cleanliness. We will continue to maintain limits on the number of people allowed into the building. These numbers are being reviewed. Hand sanitiser is available. Please follow staff instructions, signage and directions and maintain appropriate distancing to ensure we all stay safe.