Services to staff and students
Archive Services is located on level B3 of 4-12 Little Titchfield Street. The Archive Reading Room is usually open 10.00-12.00 and 13.00-16.45, Monday-Friday. If you have found an archive item via Library Search or on the Archive catalogue (CALM) that you wish to see, or you just want to chat to us about archive research in general, you are welcome to drop in during these hours.
Alterations to opening hours:
There will be no drop-in service from 1-23 November inclusive, as the Reading Room is booked for the exclusive use of students on the Engaging The Archive and History of Architecture courses. Some appointments may be available - please email [email protected] to enquire. It will still be possible to collect theses without appointments during this period, but they will need to be read in the Library.
It is sometimes necessary to close the archive for a morning or afternoon at short notice. Any alterations to our usual opening hours will be posted on twitter.com/UniWestArc. If you are making a special trip to the University Archive, please phone (0203 506 9602) or email ([email protected]) ahead to check availability.
Using the University Archive
Archive items are rare, unique and sometimes fragile. They cannot be loaned and must not be taken out of the Archive Reading Room. In order to ensure their preservation we ask that bags and coats are placed in the lockers and that only pencils, laptops and digital cameras are used in the Reading Room. No food or drink may be brought into the Reading Room.
If you wish to take photographs of archive material we will ask you to sign a copyright declaration form, alternatively we can scan/photograph items for you and email you the images.
For an introduction to the collections we hold, see this great video from Smoke TV.
Help with your Archival Research
Interested in using archives in your studies but not sure where to start? Archive Services staff are here to help! We can advise you on which areas of our collections might be relevant to your project, and of other collections in London that may be useful. We can also provide more general advice such as techniques for searching archive catalogues. Either drop in during the open hours listed above, or email us at [email protected] to arrange an appointment with one of our team.
Archive Services staff will endeavour to answer enquiries relating to the history of the University eg which year was Architecture first taught? or what date did we officially become the University of Westminster? Please send us an email and we will try to help.
We are also regularly adding to a series of Research Guides which give you a brief history of popular topics in the University's history and the resources that are available on this topic in the Archive.
Teaching and learning support
Archive Services staff provide tailor-made sessions for a number of undergraduate and postgraduate courses, to help students think about archives and consider using them in their research. These can include the opportunity to handle archive documents, talks about the history of the University and its buildings, discussions around the archival process and how it relates to more theoretical notions of the Archive. We can provide digital copies of archival documents for further work in the classroom or at home.
If you think that this would be useful for your students please contact us on [email protected] so we can discuss your requirements.
Events and publications
Archive Services are happy to support University events and programmes - examples have included illustrated talks, building tours, exhibitions and the provision of historical images for publications.
As a small department we need to discuss any events in advance.
For conservation reasons we rarely lend original material, so we usually provide surrogate copies in the form of photographs or slides.
If you have any enquiries relating to the archives or to the history, please contact Elaine Penn, the University Archivist, on +44 (0)20 3506 9602 or email us at [email protected].
Acquisition of collections to support research
The University of Westminster Records and Archives Collection and Acquisition Policy was adopted by the University Research Committee on 7 June 2017. The document includes guidelines for staff who are offered, or considering acquiring, archive collections as part of their research. Please contact the University Archivist at the first opportunity about such collections.
Records Management Services
The University's Assistant Records Manager can provide advice and guidance on a wide range of records issues including advising on records retention and helping to identify long-term archives among your department's paper and digital files.