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at Kew

The National Archives at Kew - previously called the Public Record Office - hold the records of central government and the courts of law. It has one of the largest archival collections in the world with over 100 miles of shelving used to store its collection. It spans over a thousand years of British history from the Domesday Book right through to government papers recently released to the public.

From a family historian's viewpoint, the National Archives is the key repository for finding records related to ancestors who worked for the central government or served in the armed forces. Other National Archives collections of key interest to genealogists are those related to central government taxation (lay subsidies, hearth taxes, land taxes, death duties), pre 1858 wills proved at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury, prison and other criminal records and nonconformist records of births, marriages and deaths.


National Archives

  Telephone (020) 8876 3444
  Fax (020) 8392 5286
  E-Mail or use their website's contact form
  Hours Mon 9:00 - 5:00
    Tue 10:00 - 700
    Wed 9:00 - 5:00
    Thu 9:00 - 7:00
    Fri 9:00 - 5:00
    Sat 9:30 - 5:00
    Sun Closed
  Main Collections
  Research No paid research service provided - general enquiries only
  Web Site Home Page
    Sources Held - comprehensive series of leaflets on the collections of records held at the National Archives
    Research Services - no paid research service provided
    Visiting Guide - guide to planning a visit to the National Archives at Kew and using its facilities
    Directions - comprehensive guide on how to get to the National Archives at Kew by public transport and car, together with a link to a street map
    Online Catalogue to archives of central government, courts of law and other national bodies (PROCAT) which can be free text searched
    Index to all 1 million plus wills that were proved at the Prerogative Court of Canterbury (PCC) between 1384 and 1858 - digitised images of located wills can be downloaded for a fee
This page last updated: 23 November 2006