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20-year rule: Record transfer report
Government bodies that transfer records to The National Archives provide data on the volume and transfer status of the records they hold. This data is collected in spring and autumn each year, and began in autumn 2012.
Access the record transfer report
The file shows the data provided by those 21 bodies that transfer 90% of the records sent to The National Archives each year, in A-Z order. The data from the remaining bodies that are included in the report are then also listed alphabetically.
Record transfer report autumn 2014 (XLS, 0.12MB)
Record transfer report autumn 2014 (CSV, 0.03MB)
We have introduced a new data-driven visual display for the top 21 transferring government departments. The new visualisation enables easier comparison between legacy, current and future forecasts of departmental record figures, and is designed to be easily viewed on mobile devices.
Legacy, current and forecast figures
Government bodies that transfer records to The National Archives provide data on the volume of records they hold in the following categories:
- legacy - records due for transfer or disposal by the previous year and now overdue
- current - records due for transfer or disposal in the current year
- forecast - records due for transfer or disposal next year
Data is also provided on the transfer status of the records held within each of these categories.
Public records selected for permanent preservation should be transferred to The National Archives or an approved place of deposit by the time the records become historical records, unless the Lord Chancellor authorises a department to keep them for longer. This approval is recorded in instruments signed by the Lord Chancellor (known as Lord Chancellor's Instruments or LCIs).
Figures given here do not include records subject to a LCI, unless specified - as is the case with data provided by Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Explanatory comments are given by departments to accompany the survey data and further information has been provided on their website. The records planned for transfer figure is a forecast of how many records will be transferred to The National Archives by the end of the calendar year.
For this survey we have encouraged transferring bodies to include an explanation, either here or on their website, of record numbers covered by a Lord Chancellor's Instrument.
A new question was added to the autumn 2014 survey in response to enquiries we have received, to identify the number of records still to be reviewed. Of the total number of records held, this is the number of records that have not yet been reviewed (at the time of reporting) for selection for transfer to The National Archives.
This additional figure has allowed us to produce a calculation for records planned for disposal. These are records which are known not to be selected for permanent preservation and which are awaiting either destruction or disposal to another organisation.
See data for previous record transfer reports:
Record transfer report Spring 2014 (XLS, 0.07MB)
Record transfer report Spring 2014 (CSV, 0.02MB)
Record transfer report Autumn 2013 (XLS, 0.09MB)
Record transfer report Autumn 2013 (CSV, 0.02MB)
Record transfer report Spring 2013 (XLS, 0.08MB)
Record transfer report Spring 2013 (CSV, 0.02MB)
Record transfer report Autumn 2012 (XLS, 0.09MB)
Record transfer report Autumn 2012 (CSV, 0.01MB)
Access a summary of the public records transferred to The National Archives each year.
Read more about the 20-year rule.
Find out how the records transfer process works.
Read about the legislation that shapes how the government record is managed.
This page contains XLS, CSV files. See plug-ins and file formats for help in accessing these file types.