by Allie Dillon, Senior Archivist
The national Explore Your Archive campaign begins next week and we’re marking the occasion with some changes.
From Monday 21 November 2016, Bristol Record Office will be known as Bristol Archives – a name chosen to reflect the role and purpose of the service.
The archive service was established as the Bristol Archives Office in 1924, the second local record office in the country. The service was set up to look after official records of the city but began to collect more widely.
Today, the archives in our care include records of Bristol City Council and many different Bristol organisations. These include the Bristol diocese, local public bodies, businesses, societies and charities, as well as the papers of individual people.
The records span ten centuries and range from medieval charters to modern audio-visual material.
Earlier this year we carried out a public consultation to assess what people thought of us and to ensure that we are continuously improving our service.
When asked about our name, two-thirds of people preferred ‘Bristol Archives’ and many commented that this name would help people to understand who we are and what we do.
The service has been called Bristol Record Office for some years so changing our name was considered carefully.
We feel encouraged by other archives who have already taken a similar step. The National Archives, for example, used to be the Public Record Office.
Bristol’s archives are open to anybody interested in the history of the city. We hope that our new name and logo will help more people access the resources we offer and feel welcome to explore our collections.
The new Bristol Archives logo features our building, B Bond Warehouse.
A new welcome for visitors at Bristol Archives
We are now welcoming visitors with a short film designed to introduce researchers to using our searchroom.
Please watch the video before your visit, even if you have visited us before.
We are grateful to the Friends of Bristol Museums, Galleries & Archives for their funding and support in producing this film and to the staff and volunteers who appear in it.