Cambridgeshire Archives Service provides safe storage, preservation and access for historic records relating to places or people in Cambridgeshire or Huntingdonshire bequeathed, gifted or deposited by private individuals, organisations, businesses and societies.

If you are thinking about depositing records with us, please read on to find out about the types of records we collect and our terms of acquisition.

Image of Cambridgeshire Archives' storage room

Collecting policy

We collect records of all sorts relating to the County of Cambridgeshire, which are or will become of significance for learning about and understanding the county, its people and their history. We do not generally collect:

  • artefacts, works of art or other objects unless there is a special relationship between the artefact and associated archives and good reasons for keeping them together.
  • material falling outside the service’s  geographical collecting area.
  • archives relating primarily to the University of Cambridge or its constituent colleges.

If you are in any doubt, contact our Collections Archivist who will be happy to advise on whether your records can be accepted for permanent preservation.

Image of a selection of photographs and records held by Cambridgeshire Archives

Types of acquisition


Records can be given or bequeathed to Cambridgeshire Archive Service with ownership being transferred to Cambridgeshire County Council. Gifts or bequests are the surest means of ensuring that your records are permanently preserved for study and enjoyment by future generations.


Records can also be deposited on indefinite loan in which case the depositor retains ownership of the records. Depositors retain the right to temporarily withdraw items for legal purposes, reference, or exhibition

For more detailed information, please read our Terms of Acquisition.

Cambridgeshire Archives Terms of Acquisition

Size: 209.31 KB File format: pdf

Arranging for deposit or donation

Please contact the relevant archives team before bringing records in to the archives. We can then confirm if the material falls within our collecting policy and arrange a mutually convenient date for deposit. If necessary, we can arrange for an archivist to visit and assess the records before moving them. When we receive the records, you will be asked to complete one of the simple interim receipt forms below:

Interim receipt form Cambridgeshire Archives

Size: 339.02 KB File format: pdf

Interim receipt form Huntingdonshire Archives

Size: 339.80 KB File format: pdf

Guidance for Parish Councils

Cambridgeshire Archives are often asked by parish clerks about the types of records they should be keeping for deposit as archives.  This set of guidance notes should help to identify records for permanent preservation and determine how long different types of records should be retained for business purposes by the parish council.

We welcome donations towards the costs of packaging from depositors.

The Archives Service is always happy to discuss and advise on issues relating to the deposit, storage or disposal of your records. If you require further information, please contact us.

Records at risk

Cambridgeshire Archives offers professional advice and assistance to ensure that the written history of Cambridgeshire can be preserved by offering services including surveys, document amelioration work, bespoke conservation and site visits.

If you know of any documents at risk of loss or destruction please don't hesitate to contact us.

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