Make an appointment to visit; see opening times and contact details; find out how to use the searchroom and access our records and archives.
Our facilities include:
- a large public searchroom;
- microfilm readers and reader-printers;
- digital scanners for original documents and microfilm;
- free access to Ancestry.co.uk and FindMyPast.co.uk;
- wi-fi internet access and PC for visitors' use;
- selection of local history books and periodicals;
- tea room for visitors' use; and
- exhibition area.
While you are using the searchroom you, and those around you, may be handling original documents. These records are unique and irreplaceable. Please share with us the responsibility for their safe keeping.
- Personal belongings, including all bags and handbags, should be left in the lockers provided. You may bring research notes and laptop computers into the searchroom. Laptop cases should be left in a locker.
- Pencils only may be used when taking notes. Pens may not be brought into the searchroom;
- Do not bring food or drink into the searchroom.
- Do not write on documents or mark them in any way.
- Do not bring sharp implements (such as scissors) into the searchroom.
- Ensure that your hands are clean and dry before handling documents.
- Follow the advice of staff at all times when handling documents.
- Do not take any documents, transcripts, microfilms, microfiche, guides or catalogues out of the searchroom.
In addition please note:
- Mobile phones should be switched off in the searchroom.
- The use of personal scanners is not permitted.
- The use of personal cameras is not permitted without prior consultation with staff and the purchase of a photography permit. We offer a range copying facilities and services. Please ask for details.
- Smoking is not permitted on the premises.
Please ask a member of staff if you have any queries.
Thank you for your co-operation.
The searchroom is used for the consultation of original documents, microfilms, transcripts, guides and catalogues. Record office staff provide supervision and are available to offer help and advice at all times.
Guides and catalogues
Guides to our holdings can be found on the display stand in the searchroom. More detailed catalogues for individual collections are available on the searchroom shelves. Our online catalogue can be accessed here.
Many records are available for consultation on microfilm. Visitors using microfilms will be issued with a numbered box and, if relevant to their research, a guide to some of our more frequently used records including parish registers. Microfilms are individually numbered and stored in cabinets in the searchroom. The relevant microfilm number can be found by consulting our guides and catalogues. Visitors should take only one film at a time, leaving their box as a marker in its place. The box should then be retrieved when the film is returned to the cabinet. Use of the microfilms is on a self-service basis, but staff are available to help. Self-service machines are available for printing copies of records on microfilm. Please ask staff for information on current charges.
In most cases we are able to produce original documents for consultation. Exceptions apply to some frequently used material, including parish registers, and documents in poor physical condition. In some instances advance notice may be required. Please order original documents by completing a request slip and returning it to a member of staff. Reference numbers for original documents can be found in our catalogues. Documents will normally be retrieved within twenty minutes of a request, although document production may be less frequent at busy times. Each document or group of documents will be produced to view singly and in turn. Please hand in your CARN ticket when issued with a document. When you have finished with your documents please return them to a member of staff and retrieve your CARN ticket. Please treat original documents with care and follow the advice of staff regarding handling. A self-service digital scanner is available for making copies of original records (excluding the North Riding Registry of Deeds) in our searchroom. Please ask staff for information on current charges. Some records may not be suitable for scanning.
Some records are available as transcripts, abstracts or facsimiles. Our published guides will direct you to this material, most of which is available on the searchroom shelves.
We have one computer with internet access available for public use. Visitors are also welcome to use their own laptop computers and the searchroom has a wi-fi connection.
We welcome group and educational visits by prior arrangement.
We can offer:
- talks on subjects including the work of the record office, resources for local and family history, and conservation;
- behind the scenes tours including the conservation studio and our reprographics department;
- group bookings to consult our collections in the searchroom; and
- space to hold meetings or to undertake project work.
Please contact us for further details.
We can accommodate groups of between five and 30 people for talks and tours, which last around 45 minutes to one hour.
For group bookings in the searchroom, we can offer a maximum of thirteen places to consult records on microfilm alongside an additional six places for the consultation of original documents or transcripts.
A small charge of £3 per head is made for group tours and talks.
There is no charge for school visits.
Self-service reader / printer machines are available for making A3 and A4 paper copies of records on microfilm.
A self-service microfilm scanner is available for making digital scans from microfilm to USB memory stick.
A self-service digital 'book scanner' is available in the searchroom for making copies of some original records.
North Riding Registry of Deeds
Self-service copying of the North Riding Registry of Deeds volumes from 1885 onwards is not allowed.
You are welcome to bring your own camera to take photographs of the original documents in our care (excluding the North Riding Registry of Deeds and original parish registers) upon purchasing a photography permit. Weekly or daily permits can be purchased with no restriction on the number of images that may be taken. A camera stand and an SLR digital camera are available for hire.
For further information, please see our current list of charges for copying documents.
|Monday||8.50am to 4.45pm|
|Tuesday||8.50am to 4.45pm|
|Wednesday||9.30am to 8.45pm|
|Thursday||8.50am to 4.45pm|
|Friday||8.50am to 4.15pm|
|Saturday||9.30am to 4.15pm on the first Saturday of most months.
Please check in advance.
On Saturdays, all our usual microfilm records and searchroom facilities will be available but original items must be ordered in advance.