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Colonial administration records
The 'Migrated Archives' - record series FCO 141
The National Archives is working with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to transfer and begin releasing colonial administration records, referred to as the 'migrated archives', between April 2012 and November 2013. This is in accordance with the published timeline on GOV.UK.
The collection will form record series FCO 141: Foreign and Commonwealth Office and predecessors: Records of Former Colonial Administrations: Migrated Archives. Having all the records in one place aids access and ensures the history of the collection is clear.
The records cover a wide range of subject matter relating to colonial administration. The material reflects events in the territories generally pre-independence and reflects Her Majesty's Government's views at the time.
Fifth tranche of files released
The records are being released in tranches. The fifth tranche of files will be made available on site at The National Archives from Friday 26 April 2013. This release will contain records from Ceylon, Kenya, Malta, Mauritius, New Hebrides, Nigeria, Northern Rhodesia, Nyasaland, Palestine, Sierra Leone and Singapore.
Arrangement of the records
The records are arranged alphabetically by the name of the country as they were known at the time. The piece order numbers reflect the storage order in which they arrived. Therefore records from each individual country of origin may not be listed together or in numerical order. We are making the records available in the order they arrived and will provide additional finding aids to assist access.
Searching the records
Full list of territories released in the fifth tranche:
- New Hebrides
- Northern Rhodesia
- Sierra Leone
Guides to the records
Fifth tranche - April 2013 (PDF, 0.39Mb)
Fourth tranche - November 2012 (PDF, 0.34Mb)
Third tranche - September 2012 (PDF, 0.33Mb)
Second tranche - July 2012 (PDF, 0.35Mb)
First tranche - April 2012 (PDF, 0.49Mb)
Full transfer timetable
For more information on the transfer timetable see the FCO website.
Frequently Asked Questions (PDF, 0.02Mb)
Foreign and Commonwealth OfficeVisit the GOV.UK for more information on the colonial administration files, and read a news story from May 2011 about a review on the release of colonial documents.
Cary ReviewThe content, status and management of the migrated archives were reviewed by Anthony Cary (former British High Commissioner to Canada 2007 - 2010) and laid before Parliament in February 2011.
- Read the Minister for Europe's Written Ministerial Statement on the release of colonial records on 26 March 2012.
- Read the Foreign Secretary's Written Ministerial Statement to Parliament on 30 June 2011.
- Read the House of Lords' Ministerial Statement on the release of colonial records on 5 April 2011.
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