How to get an Archives Card
The Archives Card is a single archive reader’s ticket which gives you access to a wealth of original archive material held in archives across the UK. Anyone aged 14 or over can apply for an Archives Card, which is free of charge and valid for five years.
You need to apply for a Card if you wish to view original documents we hold. You can start the simple registration process today by clicking the link at the bottom of this page which takes you straight to the application form.
To complete your registration, you need to visit one of the participating archives within three months of submitting your form with two forms of identity, as listed on the Archives Card website. A member of archives staff will check these are valid and, if so, issue your Card.
To save time on arrival, we recommend that you start your registration online before your visit. Then all you have to do when you visit is prove your ID.
A recent passport-style photograph (head and shoulders only) in electronic form is an essential part of the registration process. You can either add this yourself to your registration form or wait until you visit your chosen archive to complete registration, where a member of staff will take your photograph.
You need to complete the registration process within three months of submitting your form, otherwise your form will be deleted and you will have to enter your details again.
The Archives Card scheme is operated by ARA Commercial, which is a subsidiary of the Archives and Records Association, the leading body for archives in the UK and Ireland.