Planning a visit

How to make a booking

We are open 10:00 to 16:00 Tuesday to Friday, but you need to book a place in advance to visit us.

Bookings must be made at least two working days in advance and sessions will only be made available two weeks in advance.

Please read the information below and Contact Us to make a booking.

Please do bear with us as we may be slower to respond due reduced staff access.

Demand for bookings is likely to be high which means that we will not always be able to accommodate your request. Please be prepared to consider alternative dates/sessions as a result. Thank you.

Bookings are available for up to 7 people as follows:

  • five places to look at original documents - You will need to pre-order up to 6 documents in advance at the time of booking.
  • one place to use Microfilm/fiche and a computer.
  • one place to use Microfilm/fiche and a computer and to look at original documents - You will need to pre-order up to 6 documents in advance at the time of booking.

Access to catalogues and the library is open to all.

We will aim to clean machines between users, but use of shared items will be at your own risk.

Please do not travel without making a booking.

Each booking is for one person only.

You may book up to two sessions per week, either separately or as one whole day. You will be permitted to eat onsite if there is a seat available. Due to distancing measures we cannot guarantee a space for each visitor, so please be prepared to eat outside, or to wait outside until space becomes available. Use of shared seating areas will be at your own risk.

You will not be able to bring anyone with you unless they also book a session.

You will need to pre-order documents as much as possible as we cannot guarantee to accept orders on the day. 

You can order up to six documents in advance. Please take a moment to use our online catalogue before you make a booking in order to find the references of documents you wish to look at. 

Please bring a face-covering to wear while you are in the Record Office. 

Please note that although a session is 6 hours, it is necessary to use part of this time for arrival and departure activities (for example to put your things away, use the facilities, make a payment etc) . Please bear this in mind as we have to close promptly at the end of each session in order to clean.

Please allow time before your session ends to pay for anything, use the facilities and collect your things. This has to be done one person at a time which takes time to complete. 

Leaving before the session completely ends, will enable us to close promptly at 16:00 in order to put documents away and clean everything down.

Please let us know as soon as possible if you wish to cancel a booking, as this will open it for someone else to take.

Please see our 'When you arrive' page for more details on what to expect when you get here.

If you show symptoms of coronavirus you will be asked to leave the Record Office. 

If you, or anyone at home, has COVID-19 coronavirus symptoms or is self-isolating, please do not visit us.