The Parliamentary Archives hold the historic records of the UK House of Commons and House of Lords, dating from 1497 to present day. Holdings include Acts of Parliament from 1497, Journals from 1510, papers laid before Parliament from 1531, plans of roads, railways, canals and other public works from 1794, records about the Palace of Westminster, and some collections of personal political papers. The Parliamentary Archives are open to the public and anyone can visit by appointment.
Houses of Parliament,
+44 (0)20 7219 3074
+44 (0)20 7219 2570
Schedule & hours
Monday to Friday 9:30am-5pm
Closed on UK Bank Holidays and annually the last two weeks of November for stocktaking.
Directions to the archive
Directions to the archive can be found on the website.
Access to the archives is free of charge though an appointment and photo ID is required for entry.
Permitted and prohibited items
- Permitted: Digital cameras, table-top tripods, laptops, pencils
- Prohibited: Scanners, pens; mobile phones must be switched off or to silent mode
Document ordering and delivery
All visitors are strongly encouraged to search the online catalogue and request documents in advance of their visit, preferably by sending a list of catalogue references by email at the time of making an appointment. Usually a dozen items will be fetched at one time. However the Parliamentary Archives reserves the right to fetch fewer items at a time if they are large, such as plans and architectural drawings, for preservation and handling reasons.
Photocopying, photography, microfilming
Information on copying services and costs is available on the website
Practical information on planning your visit can be found on the website