Our policies

See our policies and standards for providing quality services, promoting equal opportunity and diversity, selecting and caring for records and reducing our environmental impact.

Records collection policy

This policy is an update of our previous Acquisition and Disposition Strategy. It sets out which records we will and will not collect from public records bodies, when we will collect them and where they will be held.

As well as providing high-level guidance for public records bodies preparing to transfer records to The National Archives, this policy enables members of the public, including those who use our archives for historical, academic or personal research, to find out what types of records we will collect.

Records collection policy (PDF, 0.12 MB)

We also reviewing all of our guidance on appraisal and selection, in line with the new policy.

Preservation policy

This policy sets out the principles according to which The National Archives will preserve and care for our archival collections.

Both physical and digital collections are preserved at The National Archives. The purpose is to preserve these collections for posterity, to retain authenticity and value, to facilitate access, and to protect our current and future collections from risks such as deterioration, damage, loss, corruption or obsolescence.

Preservation policy (PDF, 1.7 MB)

Equality and diversity

The National Archives is committed to providing a working environment and culture which values and recognises difference, and to proactively tackling barriers to discrimination.

Our Equality and Diversity policy is intended to help us to put this commitment into practice.

Visit our diversity and equal opportunities page for further information.

Service quality and public service standards

We want to help you find the information you need quickly and efficiently. We also want to help our future users by taking care of documents now to ensure that they survive in good condition.

Our promises (PDF, 0.04 MB)

Persistent enquiries

We are committed to providing excellent customer service to everyone who contacts us. Every one of our users has a right to expect to be dealt with respectfully and fairly, and to receive an appropriate response in a timely manner.

This policy is a tool used by The National Archives when considering whether enquirers are displaying unreasonably persistent behaviour; it lays out the approach that The National Archives would take under these exceptional circumstances.

Policy for handling unreasonably persistent enquiries (PDF, 0.28 MB)

Library collection development policy

The Library collection at The National Archives contains published works from the 16th century onwards that aid interpretation, use and preservation of our records. This policy provides a framework for acquisition decisions for the Library collection to ensure it is developed in a balanced and cost effective way as a research resource that supports the needs of its users.

Collection development policy for The National Archives’ Library (PDF, 0.07 MB)

Services to the people of Wales

As The National Archives for Wales, we recognise our duty to provide certain additional services to the people of Wales.

Services provided by The National Archives to the people of Wales (PDF, 0.04 MB)

Polisi’n amlinellu’r gwasanaethau a gynigir i bobl Cymru gan yr Archifau Cenedlaethol (PDF, 0.04 MB)

Archival standards

We are committed to the highest standards of archival care at The National Archives. Read more about the archival policies and standards we work to, and the guidance we offer government departments on how to manage information.

Environmental policy statement

At The National Archives, we are committed to continually improving our environmental performance – to reducing our energy use and our carbon emissions, preventing pollution and reducing our waste streams.  We have achieved the Carbon Trust Standard for measuring, managing and reducing our carbon emissions.

Environmental policy statement (PDF, 0.08 MB)