Details of changes to our library and record office services.

The Record Office

We welcome visits, by appointment, to view original archival documents & microfilms.

Opening hours

  • Monday: closed
  • Tuesday: 9.30am to 12:30pm and 1.30pm to 4.30pm
  • Wednesday: 9.30am to 12:30pm and 1.30pm to 4.30pm
  • Thursday: 9.30am to 12:30pm and 1.30pm to 4.30pm
  • Friday: closed
  • Saturday: closed
  • Sunday: closed

We will review these opening hours regularly.

Our updated Record Office services

We have reviewed our service, opening times and arrangements to follow government guidelines and keep our staff and visitors safe.

Visiting the Record Office

  • Please make an appointment before visiting. At present, we can only accommodate a limited number of visitors at any one time and may not be able to accommodate visitors arriving without an appointment. 
  • Please book a place even if you only want to consult microfilm or printed catalogues, or use the People’s Network computer. 
  • Each booking is for one person only.  If you wish to bring someone with you, please let us know and we will reserve another place for them.
  • We recommend that you order original documents in advance where possible but we will accept additional document requests during your visit.
  • We have re-opened full access to the North Riding Registry of Deeds 1885-1970 and personal searches can be made, with volumes retrieved during your visit.
  • Staff and volunteers will continue to wear face coverings for now and we would encourage our visitors to do the same.
  • We want to offer an equal service to everyone and may limit the number of bookings an individual may make in order to manage demand fairly.

Making an appointment

  • Before visiting, you can search our online catalogue to check that we hold the records you are looking for. This is not an exhaustive list and not all catalogues are currently available online. 
  • Once you know what you wish to see, please email us with a list of the documents and the date and time of your preferred session. Please include a telephone number so that we can contact you to discuss your request if necessary.
  • We will email you to confirm your appointment and provide all the information you need to maximise time for viewing documents, prior to your visit. Please do not travel to the office if you have not received a confirmation email.
  • If you are unsure whether we hold the records you wish to see, please contact us, by email ( where possible, with your enquiry. You may also contact us by telephone on 01609 777585. Our team will answer your queries and assist you before you visit as far as possible. We will discuss document requests during this consultation.

On arrival

  • Please arrive at your appointment time.
  • Please do not visit if you develop any of the symptoms of the coronavirus including:
    • a high temperature
    • a new continuous cough
    • a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
  • If you develop any of these symptoms whilst in the building, you should inform a member of staff and you will be asked to leave.
  • Our normal registration and signing in processes will be in place.
  • We will continue to have social distancing andhygiene measures in place and you will be asked to wash or sanitise your hands before entering the searchroom. Sanitiser will be available.
  • You will be assigned a desk and a locker when you book. You can bring a pencil, paper and personal devices (laptop / tablet / phone / camera) into the searchroom. All other personal items should be locked in your assigned locker. This includes all coats and bags, including device bags.
  • Our usual reprographic and copying charges will apply. Self-service copying will be available but please note that it may not be possible for staff to make copies for you on the day.
  • We will not have pencils or magnifiers for loan.
  • We will also have additional cleaning processes in place.


  • The People’s Network computer will be available for use but must be pre-booked.
  • We regret that we cannot offer refreshment facilities for visitors at present. There are cafes and shops within a 10 minute walk.
  • The building will be closed to visitors over lunchtime to allow for extra cleaning.
  • Customer toilets will be open.
  • Windows will be open for ventilation and the searchroom may be cooler than usual.
  • Please make payments for goods or services by card if possible.

Remote services

Our remote Reprographics and Research services will continue to operate so you can request that we produce copies or do research on your behalf if you prefer not to visit in person. There is a charge for this service. Please see Record office collections and services.

Historic Environment Records

Physical access to the historic environment records is restricted, however the other services provided by the North Yorkshire historic environment records are being conducted as usual. A great deal of the physical records held within the historic environment records are scanned, some with permissions to digitally disseminate. We will try our best to acquire copyright permission to disseminate for any reports or documents requested to facilitate remote working and study – please do ask if this might help you.