Update March 2021

Due to Covid-19 we are currently unable to arrange onsite group visits. We love introducing people to the Dorset History Centre and look forward to the time when we can welcome groups again. Sign up to our Archives, history and heritage newsletter to receive the latest information.

An introduction to Dorset History Centre

For community or educational groups, we can offer sessions that demonstrate how to use the History Centre, and what sources are available to help with research projects. The content of these sessions can be tailored to particular themes or geographical areas of interest. The sessions will usually include:

  • a chance to see original, historical documents first-hand: charters with the seals of kings and queens; prisoner records; a map of the Caribbean hidden inside the cover of a parish register ... and much more!
  • a 'behind the scenes' tour of our specialist storage facilities: environmentally controlled archive repositories with 8 miles of shelving! Learn how we protect against threats like floods, fire or pests.
  • an opportunity to start some basic research: participants can look for their relatives' family or surname in our indexes, or make use of the free on-site access to the popular Ancestry website.

These induction sessions usually last around one to one-and-a-half hours. The fee is £60 for up to 12 people.

We can offer additional support for groups undertaking heritage projects, including oral history training and research.

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