What we do
The National Archives helps colleagues across the public sector manage crucial information more effectively at every stage of its use, right from the moment of creation.
And as the national archive of England, Wales and the United Kingdom, we preserve key public records once they are no longer needed for the day-to-day business of government.
Our world-renowned archive benefits researchers and history enthusiasts of all ages and interests. From parchment and paper to digital files and databases, we care for 11 million public records, making them accessible to all.
Our purpose is to:
- lead and transform information management
- guarantee the survival of today's information for tomorrow
- bring history to life for everyone
We fulfil this by:
- setting standards and providing guidance to help government and the wider public sector manage and use important information as effectively as possible
- managing Crown copyright on behalf of government
- publishing all UK legislation
- promoting the re-use of public sector information and regulating the information- trading activities of organisations that create and collect public sector information
- preserving and protecting one of the largest collections of public records in the world, dating back over 1,000 years
- helping members of the public and researchers and students of all ages explore the history of our nation and their own ancestors
- supporting the wider archive sector by developing standards, inspecting repositories and providing expert guidance to public and private archives nationwide
See How we are run for more details of our plans, policies and organisation.