The National Archives launch new record copying service

This week (2 February 2016) The National Archives have launched a new record copying service, integrating the service into their online catalogue, Discovery, with revised costs and clearer guidance on how to order copies.

Record copying allows people to request digital or paper copies of TNA’s records – an essential service for those unable to visit The National Archives in person, or for when records are not available to download.

Reviewing record copying

The record copying service is a two-stage process: people send TNA the details of a document that they want copied, and the staff at Kew find and check the document to see if copies can be made and how much they will cost.  After this, researchers can decide if they wish to order the copies.

The National Archives said “During reviews of the service, we found that the system was unintuitive and that we received a high number of speculative requests which did not become record copying orders, as well as requests we could not fulfil. We wanted to improve the success rate of the first stage, as well as make the service more perceptive and easy-to-use.”

The new process will be introducing a new first step  which involves a paid-for page check, costing £8.24. This will cover TNA’s staff resources for them to find the information that a person wants copied, and then to assess whether they can safely copy it. To offset this cost, they have revised their current fees structure, reducing the cost of both digital and paper copies. Documents up to A3 in size will now both cost £1.10 per copy; digital copies previously cost £3.50 and paper copies £1.30.

At the same time TNA say that they are also integrating the record copying service into their online catalogue Discovery, to make sure all requests provide a valid document reference number. Also they will be introducing new features so people can track their order as it progresses through the record copying service.

Find out more about the new record copying service.

The National Archives
The National Archives, Kew.

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