Deposits and donations to the city

The following information is about making deposits, donations and bequests to the City Archives. It also deals with how to take out and see city records kept there.

Deposits, donations, and bequests to the History Centre

Most of our archive collections are deposited or donated by organisations and individuals either based in the city or who have a connection with it. We encourage donations of materials, but some people and organisations prefer to remain as the owner and just deposit items with us.

Our main aim is to make sure that archives are preserved as part of the city's heritage. We are also keen that local and family historians and others researching any area of the history of Coventry and its people, make use of them. Some archives, however, have to remain closed for a variety of reasons, for example, the people they refer to are still alive.

Archives come in a number of forms, such as written documents, photographs, audio and video recordings and electronic records. If you have items that you feel might be of interest for historical reasons, please let us know by using the details below. Documents held in the History Centre archives are kept in fire-protected strongrooms in carefully controlled atmospheric conditions to preserve them for the future.

All documents are held under our standard Terms of Deposit.

Withdrawal of records

A depositor can temporarily withdraw his/her records at any time if they give reasonable notice to the History Centre.

A depositor can permanently withdraw their records at any time if they give reasonable notice to the History Centre. During this period, the Council has the right to copy the records and to make the copies available for private research.

But because a long-term loan runs for at least 50 years, a depositor who permanently withdraws their records before that time might have to pay towards Council costs in storing, listing and conserving the records. Where records are withdrawn for sale, the Council asks for the first refusal to buy them.

Access to records

Records will be made available to the public for research during the advertised opening hours of the History Centre and in line with search room rules, the Data Protection Act 2018 and the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

Archives staff will work within laws on public access to records. Depositors can discuss their own access rights with the City Archivist.

Coventry Archives

Address: Herbert Art Gallery and Museum
Jordan Well

Telephone: 024 7623 7578