Exterior view of the Churchill Archives Centre building

The Churchill Archives Centre at Churchill College, Cambridge.

The Archives Centre has welcomed researchers back to our Reading Room as from Tuesday 27 April, subject to Government and Public Health England guidance.

Kindly note that the opening hours and number of researchers will be limited due to the ongoing health crisis.

In addition, we will continue to offer one hour’s free research and one hour’s free copying to any researcher each month, subject to availability of staff onsite.

For more information and to book a seat after reopening, see our Visit us page.

Our Online Services

During the lockdown, our team has been working hard to increase the range and variety of material that we can offer online. We have online events, a podcast, blog posts and a new venture to share with you – the Prototype Sound Archive.

Prototype Sound Archive

A disc in the process of being converted

One exciting new addition is the Prototype Sound Archive, where we are publishing voices from our collections – to highlight the breadth and depth of our audio holdings. This is the beginning of a two-part project, where we share excerpts from our audio holdings via SoundCloud, to raise awareness of the scope of our holdings. In time, we plan to expand the number and range of audio material that is available online(subject to copyright arrangements). We hold close to 3,000 audio files from a wide range of collections. We are currently looking at facilities for making these audio files available remotely, but in the meantime, they can be requested via our standard document request procedures.

Listen to some of the voices behind our collections.

New Blog Posts

College of images from the Florence Horsbrough collection

We have some new posts to share with you in this issue including one written for International Women’s Day (Monday 8 March) by Cherish Watton, a history PhD student at Churchill College, on the theme ‘Choose to Challenge’.

Cherish writes about Florence Horsbrough, one of only 14 female MPs  elected to Parliament before WWII. She was a remarkable woman and  we are fortunate to hold her papers here at the Archives Centre. Read Cherish’s blog here.

Black and white photo of Phyllis Willmott

Another new blog post is In Conversation: Michael Young and Phyllis Willmott by archivist Sophie Bridges. This post focuses on recently digitised recordings of Phyllis Willmott’s oral history interviews with Michael Young about his early life, 1915-53, which are  also now available online.

New walk at Chartwell, former home of the Churchill family

Part of a letter from Clementine Churchill to Winston Churchill.

(from The Churchill Papers, CHAR 1/139/85)

We supplied some images of letters between Clementine and Winston Churchill to an exhibition ‘Letters between Loved Ones’ trail at Chartwell, which runs between 24 April and 18 July. This letter from Clementine describes her feelings for the ‘heavenly Tree-Crowned Hill’ before they bought the house. Find out more here.

Recent events

We have some recordings of recent events which you might want to watch. See the latest (online) event from the Churchill History Lecture Series here, or watch an interview with Lord Boateng, the Chair of the Sir Winston Churchill Archive Trust (SWCAT).

Online exhibitions

We also have a new online exhibition here, on architecture and the College.

If you still have not seen them, you might enjoy our other online exhibitions. Check it out to see some highlights of our collections.

Distance Enquiry Services Survey

The archives need your help! We would love to hear your views about us.
We are working with ARA (The Archives and Records Association) and CIPFA on an online survey that aims to capture the feedback from people who contact archive services by email or letter.  The questions will cover the purpose of the enquiry, satisfaction with various aspects of the service and demographic information.

The survey data will help the Archives Centre develop its own services and also inform a national report, alongside other participating archives, which will assist with planning, advocacy and benchmarking in our sector.

The survey is online, anonymous and takes no more than 5 to 10 minutes to complete. It can be accessed here.

If you have any questions, please do get in touch. You can send us an email at archives@chu.cam.ac.uk and we will try to help you.

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