Glossary of Terms
This is a glossary of the fields used in the online catalogue search results, which will help you understand the search results you get. This is not a glossary of archival terms or of words you may find used in the document descriptions. If you have any queries about the information provided in the descriptions please contact the office holding the document[s] you wish to find more details about.

Access Status
This indicates if there are any exemptions to the collection for example hospital case files will be subject to access restrictions. If the collection has no exemptions, this field will say 'open'. If there are exemptions, please contact a member of staff for further information.

Admin History
Some Collection level entries have an administrative history which provides information about the origins, history and responsibilities of the body which created the records.

Catalogue Reference Number
This is the finding number for the item[s] listed. Each collection in the archives has a unique catalogue reference number. The archive staff will need to know this number in order to retrieve the document for you from the archive strong rooms.

The more information you can provide the quicker staff will be able to produce documents for you to view
If the Level is larger than an ‘Item’ [Collection, Section] the finding number may be a general number that covers a large number of items. If you are unsure about this please contact the office who hold this record for more information
You can click on the Catalogue Finding Number to see where the entry fits within the Collection it belongs to and also what other records can be found in the same Collection

Date
This gives the date, or date range of the entry you have selected.

Please note that if you are looking at a collection level entry the date covers the whole collection, so if for example you are interested in baptism registers within a certain church and there is only a collection level entry for that church, the dates of the baptism register may not fully cover the date range of the collection.

Description
This gives further details about the entry you have selected. For a collection level entry it will give details about the various types of records included in the collection and for an item level entry it will give specific details about that item.

Extent
This indicates how large the entry is you are looking at. If you are looking at a collection level entry the extent could be quite a large number of boxes so the actual item you are looking for could take some time to find if the collection is unlisted.

Level
This indicates what level of record the entry is. This information is important to note as if the entry you are looking at is collection level or section level, it will contain more than one item.
The levels are: Collection, section, sub-section, series, sub-series, item and piece.

These indicate whether the entry is:

  • a single item or a single item within a bundle [piece]
  • a section, series or sub series covering a number of items [for example a section entitled 'log books' could contain many items]
  • or a collection, which will be an entry describing the whole collection and what records it may contain

Location of Archives
This will tell you which of our five offices the entry you are looking at is held. This is important to know if you wish to view the documents as generally we do not move archives between the different offices and so you will need to view the documents at the office shown here [for further information on this see Access to buildings]

Title
This gives the title of the collection, section or item which is displayed.

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