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Giving documents to the archives service

Can I give you documents?

Yes, you can give us documents or books about the East Riding. We collect records for any place in the East Riding and for any person, family or organisation that has a link with the East Riding.

We are not only interested in records of official bodies or large landed estates. We also want archives that tell us about everyday life such as family letters, diaries or photographs. We also collect archives of local organisations like societies or businesses.

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Which places do you collect documents for?

We are a local archives and local studies service so we are interested in documents and books about the East Riding.

This mainly means the area of East Riding of Yorkshire Council but we also have documents about the historic (pre-1974) East Riding County and Humberside County (1974-1996).

We may collect documents from people or families who have a link with the East Riding even if some of them are outside of our boundaries.

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Do you have a collection policy?

Yes, we have a collection policy. This is a formal document that tells you what we collect and what we don't collect. It is placed with The National Archives as an official statement about what we collect.

The following document is our collection policy.

Collection policy (pdf 73kb opens in new window)

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Can I make a gift of documents to you?

Yes, we prefer to receive documents as a gift. A gift is an outright donation to the archives and local studies service and the documents will become the property of East Riding of Yorkshire Council.

The following document is our gift agreement.

Gift agreement (pdf 26kb opens in new window)

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What if I don't want to gift you documents?

If you have records you would like to place in the archives but you don't want to make an outright gift, then that is possible. You can deposit them, which means that we look after the documents as part of our permanent archive but you keep ownership of them.

This is a typical arrangement for many archives. The agreement is that you make a permanent deposit of the documents. You will keep the right to take documents away for a temporary period such as for an exhibition or for legal purposes.

The following document is our deposit agreement.

Deposit agreement (pdf 30kb opens in new window)

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What if my documents are confidential?

Records that are given to us can normally be seen by the public in our research room. We do know that in some cases this is not possible because documents have confidential information such as personal details, current decision making or commercially sensitive information.

This need not stop you from giving them to us as we can apply a form of closure, usually for a fixed period of time. We do comply with the Freedom of Information Act for all the records we look after. There is more information about Freedom of Information on this page.

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What happens to the documents I give you?

Your documents will be stored in the strong rooms in the Treasure House building in Beverley. They will be kept in a modern purpose-built building with secure strong rooms where the temperature and humidity are controlled.

Your documents will be listed and become part of our online catalogue so that researchers around the world can find them. Visitors will be able to see them and study them in our supervised research room.

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Why do you collect documents?

We collect documents because we want to keep a permanent archive of the East Riding. Our archives are kept for their historical value and also for their evidential or legal value. Active collecting of our local archives will mean that information about our lives in the past will be kept for future generations.

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How do I give you documents?

It is helpful to contact us before giving records to us. This helps us to advise you that what you are offering fits with our collection policy and gives us a chance to explain arrangements for delivering or collecting them. You will probably have some information about the documents such as names of people or history of an organisation that can help us.  Please complete the archives donation form (opens in a new window) to provide us with the details of your documents and your contact details.

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Do you collect film, sound and digital archives?

Yes, we do. We have a film and sound archive and would like to receive any local film or audio records.

We also hold archives held in digital forms. The digital records we create today will be the history of tomorrow, so if you have something you think worth preserving then please let us know.

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