A view showing York Railway Station from an elevated position to the south-east, with a line of cars, probably taxis, parked along the road in front
York Railway Station in 1928. Photographer: Walter Scott © Historic England WSA01/01/04989
York Railway Station in 1928. Photographer: Walter Scott © Historic England WSA01/01/04989

Historic England Archive - Access Policy

The Historic England Archive’s Access Policy reflects the commitment in our mission statement

We enable people to understand, enjoy and engage with the heritage of the built environment of England through collecting, preserving and making available, records of its places and people.


This policy applies to the holdings of the Historic England Archive (HEA). It does not relate to records held elsewhere in Historic England.


We aim to:

  • provide excellent services and facilities to enable anyone with an interest in our collections to access them
  • provide physical access that is in keeping with the long term preservation of the collections in our care
  • increase digital access to our collections by developing online resources
  • provide learning resources based on HEA’s holdings
  • seek the views of users and potential users to help us to evaluate and improve the services we offer

Online access

The HEA provides free online resources including our core catalogue. These resources can be accessed via the Historic England Archive web page. Over a million images may be viewed online.

Enquiry service

The HEA provides a free basic enquiry service and charged-for priority and research services. Full details of the services offered are available on our website.

Due to limited staff resource, we may refuse complex and/or voluminous requests, but we will suggest alternatives where possible.

Visits to the Public Search Room and Library

The Public Search Room and Library are usually open to the public Tuesday-Friday 9.30-5.00 and HEA staff are always available at our enquiry desk to supervise use of original material and provide advice.

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