Please see the latest updates HERE.

(This page is currently being updated- please bear with us while we add more details and photographs.)

Who are the Friends?

The Friends of The National Archives (FTNA) is a registered charity and voluntary organisation set up in 1988 at the then Public Record Office (PRO) and launched at a conference celebrating 150 years of the setting up of the PRO. There are now over 800 members across the UK and globally too – including Europe, and North America. FTNA was registered as a charity in 1990 and became incorporated as a CIO in 2020. There is a governing Council, comprising members of the Charity with trustee status and responsibility. The governance of the Friends is entirely on a voluntary basis. The Friends is a member of the British Association of the Friends of Museums (BAFM). FTNA also networks with other like-minded voluntary organisations supporting local archives, in addition to local and family history societies.We work closely with TNA’s education and outreach teams by providing funds for projects involving a wide range of activities with schools and community groups.

Helping to preserve the nation’s documentary heritage and making it more accessible – recent projects

Cataloguing the Great Cowcher Books

An exciting new FTNA-funded project to catalogue the Great Cowcher Books is underway. The Great Cowcher Books of the duchy of Lancaster (TNA, DL 42/1-2) are some of the greatest treasures deposited with The National Archives. They are perhaps second only to Domesday Book in their importance as a record of medieval landholding and lordship across many counties of England and Wales. Equally, the books are compiled using the finest, most high-quality materials. Yet, both their beauty as objects and the importance of their content to researchers remain under-appreciated. Thanks to this new project, Lordship, Identities and Communities: The Duchy of Lancaster’s Medieval Estates, this is all about to change. Regular updates on this project will be provided on the Updates page.

On 18 May 2022 Professor Louise Wilkinson gave an update to the project entitled ‘The Treasures of the Medieval Duchy of Lancaster’ to Members of the Friends. The talk was recorded and is available to Members by logging in and navigating to The Talks Programme /Archive of Past Talks / Other Historical Topics.

Rebels in the Records

Photos and details to follow.

Your Unfortunate Servants

Photos and details to follow.

Art and Archives

The Friends provided funding towards three events in collaboration with Nottingham Trent University which looked at the developing, nurturing and inspriation of creative practice with the collections at The National Archives.

Art and archives day 1- Archives as Creative Practice: https://youtu.be/Xhk_vSeJKY8

Art and archives day 2: Creative Encounters with Archives https://youtu.be/poyZfLn6djs

Other projects

Some of the other project work we have supported include SP 20/10-13 (Parliamentary Sequestration Committee); KB 9 (King’s Bench Indictments) MH47 (Conscientious Objectors Tribunals); C 5, 7, & 8 (Chancery proceedings) and HCA 30 & 32 (Prize papers – the High Court of Admiralty). We have supported various conferences, including those on RMS Titanic; Railways; various aspects of the First World War and the Prize Papers. We help to fund talks and events at The National Archives and supported the Writer of the Month series in 2013.

We have supported competitions based on the use of historical records to create films and computer games. We have jointly funded projects with the British Association of Local History, the Federation of Family History Societies and the National Maritime Museum.

For more information about membership and to join as a Member please click here

Existing members, please click here to renew or update your details in the members portal (VeryConnect).

The new 2022 TNA bookshop code for members’ to obtain their online bookshop discount, is now available on the Publications page within the members’ area of this website.  

The Friends’ Legacy leaflet was updated in July 2021. A copy is now available here. 

All members should read our letter regarding the new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) Act 2018 in the members’ area here

Having problems accessing the members’ area? Click here.