About the grants

What are cataloguing grants?

This strand of Archives Revealed provides grants of up to £45,000 for archives to create catalogues of archival collections. Since the launch of these cataloguing grants in 2017, Archives Revealed has funded 26 exciting cataloguing projects that have improved access to previously hidden archive collections across the UK. To continue the success of the programme, we sought your feedback in 2020 and made improvements to ensure that we continue to deliver an effective and supportive cataloguing fund for archives.

We are interested in funding archives with collections that can:

  • show a clear local, regional, national or international significance, or significance to a specific audience group
  • represent the lives and perspectives of different people from across the UK
  • reveal the hidden stories and experiences of people, communities and events and communicate these to a variety of audiences
  • demonstrate a high level of potential to engage people and communities with archives and heritage and show how archives make a difference in people’s lives
  • show excellent standards of cataloguing and discovery techniques that ensure catalogued collections are made accessible to the public

For full details of which organisations are eligible, please see our ‘who can apply?’ section below.

How do I apply?

Following a comprehensive review in 2020, Archives Revealed continues to be a two-phase programme but we have simplified the first phase. The Phase 1 application is now an expression of interest and Phase 2 is a full application.

You can find out more about the application process on our ‘how to apply‘ webpage.

What support is available?

We encourage applicants to contact the Archives Revealed team for a pre-application call. During this call, we can discuss your individual circumstances and provide application advice. Our ‘help with your application‘ webpage also has lots of useful guidance and resources.

Who can apply?

To apply for an Archives Revealed cataloguing or scoping grant, your organisation must meet all of the following eligibility criteria:

Type of organisation
We can fund public sector bodies, registered charities and other not-for-profit organisations. We also welcome partnership and consortium bids but please see the section below on ‘simultaneous applications’.
We can’t fund profit-making organisations (see far below), Community Interest Companies (CICs) or private individuals. We also don’t provide grants to organisations who are contributing to the funding of the Archives Revealed scheme.

We can fund any of the above eligible organisations in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The funded collection must also be held in these countries.
We can’t fund organisations based in the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man or organisations whose collections are held outside of the UK.

Professional expertise
Funded organisations must have access to professional archive expertise.

Collection status
We can fund organisations with owned or deposited collections, providing they can provide a commitment from the depositor that the collection will not be withdrawn from public access or sold within ten years of the project end date.

Access to collections
Funded organisations must make their collections accessible to people outside their organisation.

Application history
There are no restrictions on past applicants applying. However, you must have finished the first project, submitted the final project report and received the final project payment before submitting a subsequent application. If your first application was unsuccessful, you can re-submit your application but please contact us for feedback first.

Simultaneous applications
Organisations cannot participate in more than one application at a time, either as a lead applicant or as a partner. It is therefore vital that your application is approved by each organisation’s relevant authority to avoid duplication. Applications from constitutionally separate services under the same parent authority may be considered. However, we encourage a strategic and prioritised approach to cataloguing and this may not align with multiple applications from related services.

Profit-making organisations: if your parent body is a profit-making organisation, do you have a friends group or a charitable arm/trust that could make an application on your behalf? Please note that you will be expected to provide clear justification, demonstrating the public benefit of receiving a grant.