Latest News from Cheshire Archives and Local Studies

November 2023


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Cheshire’s archives: a story shared – where to find out more

We now have a dedicated online space to share our project story with you over the next four years. To begin you can explore our project plans in detail and we have made a start on telling the story of how the project is unfolding. It is a place where we will regularly record our progress and where you are welcome to tell us what you think and join in whenever and however you can.


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Cheshire’s archives: a story shared – get involved with Gems

Coming in Spring 2025, Gems is a new digital experience from Cheshire Archives and Local Studies. Visitors will be able to make an online search with a Cheshire postcode to find the closest items from our archive that tell a vivid and memorable story of that exact area - the local Gems. These items, including documents, images, and audio and film clips, will be a way in for visitors to discover more, allowing them to easily immerse themselves in local histories. Of course we need local experts to help find 100 items for over 20 places across Cheshire. Discover which places are involved, see sample gems, find out more and register your interest, all the information and links you need are on the Cheshire story shared project site.


What are Gems? — Cheshire's archives: a story shared (


Cheshire’s archives: a story shared – be prepared

Following planning approval in March, Kier Construction have been appointed to build the new centres in Chester and Crewe. We have been working closely with all the specialist teams and Kier to complete building designs and they expect to begin construction on both sites in Spring 2024. With this date and their building programme in mind from Spring 2024, onsite access to archives at the Record Office will need to be out on hold until the new centres open in Spring/Summer 2025, but there will still be many ways you can access our services.

More information


Opportunities to get involved

If you have ever thought about volunteering with us why not come along to meet the team and other volunteers at our Horrible Christmas Handwriting training session – a relaxed have a go session followed by festive get together on Monday 11 December at 11am. Just contact us in advance to reserve a spot!

If you use Cheshire Archives & Local Studies and are fascinated by how brands develop and services named you could play a part in what happens next for our service. You will need to be available for a workshop in Crewe during the afternoon of December 6 or in Chester during the morning of December 7 and let us know a bit about why you’d like to be involved. We’ll then invite a good mix of participants along to the sessions. Contact us via the contact page on our website if interested.


Cheshire’s archives: a story shared – team celebration

On Monday 30 October the whole team went on an away-day to Manchester. To celebrate our work so far and embarking on our major project, we visited other National Lottery Heritage funded organisations who have achieved considerable success with theirs. We can recommend the People’s History Museum, Archives+, The Portico Library and the Manchester Jewish Museum and thank them for their time, insight and inspiration. You might not know that Brett researches and publishes the definitive online resource for Tchaikovsky scholars. As a mystery shopper at Archives+ he searched their catalogue with little expectation of returning any Tchaikovsky results let alone experiencing the joy of encountering the real thing for the first time!   



Meet a new member of our team

We have recently welcomed Claire Flynn to the team, as Local Studies Librarian. Claire will be in post for one year and help ready our local studies collections for moving to the new centres. Claire previously worked as a public librarian for 13 years for Westminster City Council. 



Searchroom opening times

The Searchroom is open as usual Tuesdays 9am to 4pm, Wednesdays 9am to 5pm and Thursdays 9am to 4pm.

We will close to the public at 4pm on Thursday 21 December for the Christmas and New Year break and re-open at 9am on Tuesday 2 January 2024.

We have also opened booking for the final three Saturday openings we are currently offering until the service re-locates to our new homes in Chester and Crewe in 2025. Please get in touch if you would like to visit on 20 January, 17 February or 16 March 9am-4pm.

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Visiting us (