Plan of Hereford Cathedral. Image courtesy of Hereford Cathedral.

Religious archives are important, both for faith communities and society. They are a crucial element of our national heritage that cover a wide range of subjects and serve a variety of researchers, from academics to genealogists.

In 2010 we conducted a survey of religious archives in the United Kingdom. This survey was funded by the Pilgrim Trust and was in partnership with the Archives and Records Association (UK and Ireland) and the Religious Archives Group.

The review resulted in recommendations under the following themes:

  • strategic infrastructure to safeguard collections and improve network support
  • funding
  • advocacy
  • cross-sectoral collaboration
  • good governance through best practice in record-keeping

Following the publication of the report and subsequent consultative meetings, a Religious Archives Support Plan was drawn up. In October 2012, The National Archives appointed a Senior Adviser: Religious Archives within the Private Archives Team to take forward this support plan, in association with other partners.

Survey results have already been used to update and extend the information held in the National Register of Archives, which is now incorporated into Discovery, our catalogue. This has led to some significant additions to our coverage recording the existence and availability of archives not previously represented. Further information and updates on the support plan can be found on the Religious Archives Group website.

Read the Religious Archives Survey 2010

Religious Archives Survey 2010 (PDF, 0.58Mb)

Appendices to the Religious Archives Survey 2010 (PDF, 2.61Mb)

Translations of the executive summary

Welsh executive summary (PDF, 0.21Mb)

Urdu executive summary (PDF, 0.39Mb)

Punjabi executive summary (PDF, 0.09Mb)

Hindi executive summary (PDF, 0.45Mb)

Bengali executive summary (PDF, 0.08Mb)

Arabic executive summary (PDF, 0.25Mb)

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