About Searching: More help with using and understanding Historic England Archive


How searching works: overview

There are two ways to enter your search:

Quick Search searches for records using the word or words you have entered in the box. If you use more than one word, the records with the closest match for those words will be retrieved first. You can also choose to retrieve only those records with an online image to view.

Advanced Search lets you be more specific about the parts of the records you wish to search. You can use a text box as in the Quick Search, but you can also choose from a number of different options. For most boxes there are drop down lists to choose from.

It is not necessary to use all the boxes – the fewer boxes you use, the more results you will retrieve.

The search combines everything you enter to retrieve records which include all of them.

We apply a number of search rules to give the best results.



Rules for free-text searching

These rules apply to all boxes where you can type any text you like as follows:
• Quick Search box
• Advanced Search ‘any text’ ; ‘building name address or place’; ‘person or organisation name’; ‘reference code or number’

Number of words
You can enter as many words as you wish up to 50 characters (including spaces)

Punctuation and special characters
Most punctuation is ignored when searching. Example: the search treats ‘Rose’s Cottage Barnet’ as if you had typed Roses Cottage Barnet. However, the character / is searched (to enable searching on reference numbers in formats such as BB78/23)

Lower case or upper case?
All searching is case insensitive. Example: the search treats ‘ROSE Cottage BARNET’ as if you had typed rose cottage barnet

Common words
Some common words are ignored when searching. Example: the search treats Rose and Cottage of Barnet as if you had typed Rose Cottage Barnet.

Using a wildcard
The Wildcard character is * (asterisk). This may be used in place of one or many letters at the END of the search terms input. Example: if you type Rose Cottag* the search will retrieve Rose Cottages and Rose Cottage.

See also

Do we need to change the search rules? Use Opens in new windowSITE FEEDBACK to let us know if you didn’t get the results you expected



Which data fields are searched?

Quick Search

Quick Search looks in all of the following data fields: Reference No. Title Place Format [e.g. photograph] Description [of the archive item or collection] People/Organisations [e.g. photographer] Keywords [e.g. baroque, staircase, hillfort]

Tip: Fewer words in the search box will find more results.

Advanced Search

Any text box

This looks in exactly the same fields as Quick Search (see above).

All other sections of the Advanced Search form look for matches in the data field of the same name, e.g. putting York in ‘Person or Organisation name’ will search for such names as ‘York and Sons Photographers’ while in ‘parish’ it will look for the parish of York.

Only a few fields are not searchable, e.g. the scale of a map.

Tip: You don’t need to fill in all the search boxes. More search boxes used will find fewer, more specific, results.

Tip: take care when using ‘Any text’ in combination with other Advanced Search fields, you could build a contradictory search, e.g. if you type Blackpool Tower in Any Text and choose Derbyshire from the county list, you’re unlikely to get many results.



Narrowing or Widening Searches

English Heritage Archives offers three search options: all words, exact match or any words.

When the results are returned, you have the option to narrow your search by ticking exact match or widen it by ticking any words.

All words

Quick search retrieves records with all the words anywhere in them, in any order.

E.g. if you enter carlisle castle you will retrieve records for:

  • Carlisle Castle
  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle

Exact match

Only those records with all the words in the order you've entered them will be retrieved.

Any records where the words are divided by another word, or are in reverse order, will be excluded.

E.g. the following will not appear in the results for carlisle castle:

  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle

The following results will appear in the results for carlisle castle:

  • Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria
  • Inner Gatehouse, Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria
  • Queen Marys Tower, Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria

Any words

Records with one or more of the words in them will be retrieved.

E.g. the results retrieved for carlisle castle will include records for:

  • Carlisle Castle
  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle
  • Castle Acre Priory
  • Carlisle Street, Sheffield


Case Study 1: What you might find for an historic house: Athelhampton Hall, Dorset

Athelhampton Hall in Dorset is a country house dating back to the fifteenth century. The photographs and documents in the Historic England Archive record the Hall over the last hundred years and illustrate the events that have shaped its recent history.

The earliest item in the Historic England Archive relating to Athelhampton Hall is an album dating to 1892. This album is a contemporary photographic record of the period of major restoration work undertaken by AC de Lafontaine who bought the property in 1891. The photographs provide a glimpse of life at the Hall during the Victorian and Edwardian periods. Photographs of the interior of the building and the garden under construction illustrate fashions in décor and garden design at the time.

General view showing the Reverend WE Gibbons
General view showing the Reverend WE Gibbons
and Harry in the Solarium, taken 25th July 1892
AL0400/002/03

General view during construction showing gateway
General view during construction showing gateway
and scalloped walls with obelisks surrounding
The Corona taken July 1892. AL0403/022/02

Exterior of the south west front from the driveway, taken 1890-1910. AL0403/007/02
Exterior of the south west front from the driveway,
taken 1890-1910. AL0403/007/02

General view looking along pathway, taken 1890-1920 AL0403/026/05
General view looking along pathway, taken 1890-1920
AL0403/026/05

General view with gazebo or pavilion in distance, taken 1890-1920 AL0403/021/03
General view with gazebo or pavilion in distance,
taken 1890-1920 AL0403/021/03

Detail of room interior, taken 1890-1920.
Detail of room interior, taken 1890-1920.
AL0403/035/02

Exterior view of south east from private garden with the pond in foreground, taken 1900-1925
Exterior view of south east from private garden with
the pond in foreground, taken 1900-1925
AL0417/005/01

The estate left the ownership of Mr AC de Lafontaine in 1916. The sales particular, dated 20th July 1916, which was used to sell the estate at auction, provides not only detailed descriptions of the main house, associated buildings and a farm, but also of the gardens and the surrounding countryside. It is beautifully illustrated with contemporary sepia photographs of the exterior and interior of the house, the gardens and the other estate buildings and views. It’s interesting to compare these images with earlier and later ones. For instance, The Corona, photographed above in 1892 under construction, is shown here in 1916 complete and with the planting mature.

Estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292
Estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292

Detailed photograph of The Corona
Detailed photograph of The Corona from estate sales
particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292

Detailed description for the garden with specific mention of The Corona, 	from estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916.
Detailed description for the garden with
specific mention of The Corona, from estate
sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292  

In 1970, architectural historians from The Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England produced measured drawings of the Great Hall for ‘An Inventory of Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset’. The drawings are cross-sections which show how the house was constructed. They appear in the published volume (HMSO, 1970) along with notes on the history of the house.

MD92/00932 Great Hall Cross Sections, drawn by RCHME, 1970
MD92/00932 Great Hall Cross Sections, drawn by RCHME, 1970 

A photograph of 1990 (below) shows a change in the garden layout; the formal beds shown in the earlier photographs AL0403/007/02 (above) have been replaced by lawns.

Athelhampton Hall, exterior view showing front elevation.
Athelhampton Hall, exterior view showing front elevation.
Taken by Paul Barkshire, September 1990. DD001209  

A photograph of 1992 shows the damage caused by a terrible fire in the main house, but a 1993 photograph records the successful restoration of the building.

Taken by RCHME, November 1992
Athelhampton Hall shortly after the fire. Taken by RCHME, November 1992
BB92/31650

Athelhampton Hall restored post fire
Athelhampton Hall restored post fire. Taken by RCHME, September 1993
FF93/00542



Case Study 2: What you might find for a village: Bisley, Gloucestershire

Bisley is a small, rural village in Gloucestershire set on a valley slope. At its core are a number of historic and picturesque Cotswold stone cottages. The photographs and documents retrieved by this search cover some of these cottages, the church, the school, the village pub and several farms and farmhouses. They also illustrate some more unexpected aspects of life in the parish.

All Saints Church is represented by photographs, which include details of the font taken in the 1930s and the stained glass windows, recorded sixty years later.

Exterior view from south,
All Saints, Bisley. Taken by Gordon Barnes,
June 1972. BB019922
Interior view looking north east,
All Saints, Bisley. Taken by Gordon
Barnes, June 1972. BB019923    

 

   
 Interior detail of east window
All Saints church, Bisley. Taken by RCHME, June 1998
BB98/13524
 Interior view, detail of font
All Saints Church, Bisley. Taken by Sidney Pitcher, 1930-1939.
AL0266/009/03

 The village has a lock up dating to 1824 with two cells for detaining drunks and criminals; a rare survival of this building type.

Bisley Lock Up. Taken by English Heritage, March 2000.
AA007828

The various houses in the parish of Bisley with Lypiatt are represented not only by photographs, such as that of Nether Lypiatt Manor (below), but also by estate agents sales particulars of a variety of dates.

Nether Lypiatt Manor, taken by RCHME, August 1998.
BB98/13787

   
 Estate sales particular for The Mansion
Dated 17th June 1949
SA00979
 Estate sales particular for The Frith
Dated 28th April 1964
SA02292

In 1996 Lypiatt Park, a notable house and estate in the parish which dates back to the mid 16th century, was the subject of an extensive photographic survey. The building file for Lypiatt also contains a number of reports on the associated buildings, such as the stable block, granary and dovecote. There are also copies of plans recording the various phases in the building’s life. At the time of the survey the house was the residence of the sculptor Lynn Chadwick. The photographs record the sculptor at work and the sculptures in their landscape setting.

Lypiatt Park 1812 view
BB97/6344

High Wind 1984 by Lynn Chadwick
Taken by RCHME, 1996. AA96/2366

Other records represent a snapshot of a bygone age, such as the photograph below of the Daneway Basin Lock on the Thames and Severn Canal taken by Henry Taunt in 1904.

Daneway Basin Lock
CC57/00109



Case Study 3: What you might find for a town: Stroud, Gloucestershire

Stroud is a small town in Gloucestershire which grew up as a result of the wool trade. The search results for Stroud include records for a wide range of buildings in the town; its churches, mills, hospitals and railway station. There are also detailed photographs and reports relating to some of the older domestic dwellings. The photographs and documents illustrate how the town has changed over time.

The earliest document for Stroud held by the Historic England Archive is an estate sales particular for The Grove Estate dated June 5th 1914. This document, produced by an estate agent to sell the property, describes each of the individual properties owned by the estate from the main house to the individual farms, woodland and workers' cottages. It includes a contemporary map showing the locations, land area and relationship of each of the lots.

The Grove Estate sales particular SCO0382

Other documents record buildings that have since been demolished. These include the Stroud Brewery Maltings, which stood in the Wallbridge area of the town until the 1960s and part of the High Street, which was demolished to make way for a bypass. The building file for 32-36 High Street includes a short written report and architectural drawings for 33 High Street.

Stroud Brewery Maltings Stroud Brewery Maltings
Taken by Eric de Mare, 1956. AA98/05289
Taken by Eric de Mare,
1956. AA98/05288

32-36 High Street
Taken by RCHME, 1976.BB93/21852
Short written report by RCHME for 33 High dated 1976

Records also show buildings in the town which still stand, but have since been restored or had their use changed. The Hill Paul Building in Cheapside, once a clothing factory employing many generations of local families, has in recent years been restored from the poor state of repair that it fell into post closure (as illustrated below) and converted into apartments. The building file for Cashes Green hospital, which was closed following changes in the NHS, includes a three page report on the history of the hospital, plans and some aerial photographs of the site

  
Hill Pauls Building 
Taken by English Heritage, December 2000 
AA0017399 
Cashes Green Hospital
Taken by RCHME, July 1993
BB93/21852

Ebley Mill was, like many mills in the Stroud valleys, water powered.  It was built as a textile mill in 1820-23, but like the majority of the mills fell out of production in the later twentieth century.  It has now been restored and houses the headquarters of Stroud District Council.

 
Ebley Mill with the weir in the foreground. 
Taken by Eric de Mare, 1956.AA98/04424 
BB98/13823
Ebley Mill as Stroud District Council's offices,
Taken by RCHME, July 1998.

Other photographs and documents record lost ways of life.  Dudbridge Foundry, recorded in 1996, has since been demolished. The photographs in the building file were taken on 19th July 1996; the last day that the foundry was in operation. The photographs record not just the foundry buildings, but the men at work in them. The building file contains a report on the history and development of the foundry.

Dudbridge Foundry, view of pouring metal into mould
Taken by RCHME, July 1996 BB96/10243
Part of page 1 of the RCHME report on Dudbridge Foundry written in 1996


Case Study 4: Finding photographs and documents for a type of building

The Royal Naval Hospital Haslar was the first purpose-built naval hospital for the sick and wounded in England.  It was built in the 1740s with various later additions including a mortuary and mortuary chapel in 1868 and a self contained isolation hospital in 1899. The Hospital was surveyed as part of a major national study of hospitals undertaken in the 1990s.

The archive holds two building files on the Royal Naval Hospital at Haslar: one for the main hospital, the other the Isolation Hospital and two measured drawings.

The building file for the main hospital (BF100117) contains a 14 page report and a large number of black and white interior and exterior photographs of the hospital buildings taken in July 1992. The file also contains a number of aerial views of the site.

Some items stand out: a colour tinted architectural drawing from the Property Services Agency Collection of the water tower can be compared with a photograph of the building itself. There is also a copy of an early postcard, sent by a patient, showing different views of the hospital.

Page 1 of the RCHME report written 1991, revised 1992

East Main Block, centre view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992    
BB92/29875 
Main Blocks, view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29866

 
Canada Block, central block from south east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992  
BB92/29871  
Medical Mess, view from south west
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29849
 
Chapel, view from north 
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992 
BB92/29845 
Chapel, interior view from north east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992             
BB92/29841
PTM 170 Elevation of water tower 18-04-81
PSA Collection 
BB92/25483 
Water Tower, view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29890

An early postcard (copy).
AA92/02018



How searching works: overview

There are two ways to enter your search:

Quick Search searches for records using the word or words you have entered in the box. If you use more than one word, the records with the closest match for those words will be retrieved first. You can also choose to retrieve only those records with an online image to view.

Advanced Search lets you be more specific about the parts of the records you wish to search. You can use a text box as in the Quick Search, but you can also choose from a number of different options. For most boxes there are drop down lists to choose from.

It is not necessary to use all the boxes – the fewer boxes you use, the more results you will retrieve.

The search combines everything you enter to retrieve records which include all of them.

We apply a number of search rules to give the best results.



Rules for free-text searching

These rules apply to all boxes where you can type any text you like as follows:
• Quick Search box
• Advanced Search ‘any text’ ; ‘building name address or place’; ‘person or organisation name’; ‘reference code or number’

Number of words
You can enter as many words as you wish up to 50 characters (including spaces)

Punctuation and special characters
Most punctuation is ignored when searching. Example: the search treats ‘Rose’s Cottage Barnet’ as if you had typed Roses Cottage Barnet. However, the character / is searched (to enable searching on reference numbers in formats such as BB78/23)

Lower case or upper case?
All searching is case insensitive. Example: the search treats ‘ROSE Cottage BARNET’ as if you had typed rose cottage barnet

Common words
Some common words are ignored when searching. Example: the search treats Rose and Cottage of Barnet as if you had typed Rose Cottage Barnet.

Using a wildcard
The Wildcard character is * (asterisk). This may be used in place of one or many letters at the END of the search terms input. Example: if you type Rose Cottag* the search will retrieve Rose Cottages and Rose Cottage.

See also

Do we need to change the search rules? Use Opens in new windowSITE FEEDBACK to let us know if you didn’t get the results you expected



Which data fields are searched?

Quick Search

Quick Search looks in all of the following data fields: Reference No. Title Place Format [e.g. photograph] Description [of the archive item or collection] People/Organisations [e.g. photographer] Keywords [e.g. baroque, staircase, hillfort]

Tip: Fewer words in the search box will find more results.

Advanced Search

Any text box

This looks in exactly the same fields as Quick Search (see above).

All other sections of the Advanced Search form look for matches in the data field of the same name, e.g. putting York in ‘Person or Organisation name’ will search for such names as ‘York and Sons Photographers’ while in ‘parish’ it will look for the parish of York.

Only a few fields are not searchable, e.g. the scale of a map.

Tip: You don’t need to fill in all the search boxes. More search boxes used will find fewer, more specific, results.

Tip: take care when using ‘Any text’ in combination with other Advanced Search fields, you could build a contradictory search, e.g. if you type Blackpool Tower in Any Text and choose Derbyshire from the county list, you’re unlikely to get many results.



Narrowing or Widening Searches

English Heritage Archives offers three search options: all words, exact match or any words.

When the results are returned, you have the option to narrow your search by ticking exact match or widen it by ticking any words.

All words

Quick search retrieves records with all the words anywhere in them, in any order.

E.g. if you enter carlisle castle you will retrieve records for:

  • Carlisle Castle
  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle

Exact match

Only those records with all the words in the order you've entered them will be retrieved.

Any records where the words are divided by another word, or are in reverse order, will be excluded.

E.g. the following will not appear in the results for carlisle castle:

  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle

The following results will appear in the results for carlisle castle:

  • Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria
  • Inner Gatehouse, Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria
  • Queen Marys Tower, Carlisle Castle, Carlisle, Cumbria

Any words

Records with one or more of the words in them will be retrieved.

E.g. the results retrieved for carlisle castle will include records for:

  • Carlisle Castle
  • Rose Castle, Dalston, Carlisle
  • Castle Street, Carlisle
  • Castlesteads, Walton, Carlisle
  • Castle Acre Priory
  • Carlisle Street, Sheffield


Case Study 1: What you might find for an historic house: Athelhampton Hall, Dorset

Athelhampton Hall in Dorset is a country house dating back to the fifteenth century. The photographs and documents in the Historic England Archive record the Hall over the last hundred years and illustrate the events that have shaped its recent history.

The earliest item in the Historic England Archive relating to Athelhampton Hall is an album dating to 1892. This album is a contemporary photographic record of the period of major restoration work undertaken by AC de Lafontaine who bought the property in 1891. The photographs provide a glimpse of life at the Hall during the Victorian and Edwardian periods. Photographs of the interior of the building and the garden under construction illustrate fashions in décor and garden design at the time.

General view showing the Reverend WE Gibbons
General view showing the Reverend WE Gibbons
and Harry in the Solarium, taken 25th July 1892
AL0400/002/03

General view during construction showing gateway
General view during construction showing gateway
and scalloped walls with obelisks surrounding
The Corona taken July 1892. AL0403/022/02

Exterior of the south west front from the driveway, taken 1890-1910. AL0403/007/02
Exterior of the south west front from the driveway,
taken 1890-1910. AL0403/007/02

General view looking along pathway, taken 1890-1920 AL0403/026/05
General view looking along pathway, taken 1890-1920
AL0403/026/05

General view with gazebo or pavilion in distance, taken 1890-1920 AL0403/021/03
General view with gazebo or pavilion in distance,
taken 1890-1920 AL0403/021/03

Detail of room interior, taken 1890-1920.
Detail of room interior, taken 1890-1920.
AL0403/035/02

Exterior view of south east from private garden with the pond in foreground, taken 1900-1925
Exterior view of south east from private garden with
the pond in foreground, taken 1900-1925
AL0417/005/01

The estate left the ownership of Mr AC de Lafontaine in 1916. The sales particular, dated 20th July 1916, which was used to sell the estate at auction, provides not only detailed descriptions of the main house, associated buildings and a farm, but also of the gardens and the surrounding countryside. It is beautifully illustrated with contemporary sepia photographs of the exterior and interior of the house, the gardens and the other estate buildings and views. It’s interesting to compare these images with earlier and later ones. For instance, The Corona, photographed above in 1892 under construction, is shown here in 1916 complete and with the planting mature.

Estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292
Estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292

Detailed photograph of The Corona
Detailed photograph of The Corona from estate sales
particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292

Detailed description for the garden with specific mention of The Corona, 	from estate sales particular dated 20th July 1916.
Detailed description for the garden with
specific mention of The Corona, from estate
sales particular dated 20th July 1916. SC00292  

In 1970, architectural historians from The Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England produced measured drawings of the Great Hall for ‘An Inventory of Historical Monuments in the County of Dorset’. The drawings are cross-sections which show how the house was constructed. They appear in the published volume (HMSO, 1970) along with notes on the history of the house.

MD92/00932 Great Hall Cross Sections, drawn by RCHME, 1970
MD92/00932 Great Hall Cross Sections, drawn by RCHME, 1970 

A photograph of 1990 (below) shows a change in the garden layout; the formal beds shown in the earlier photographs AL0403/007/02 (above) have been replaced by lawns.

Athelhampton Hall, exterior view showing front elevation.
Athelhampton Hall, exterior view showing front elevation.
Taken by Paul Barkshire, September 1990. DD001209  

A photograph of 1992 shows the damage caused by a terrible fire in the main house, but a 1993 photograph records the successful restoration of the building.

Taken by RCHME, November 1992
Athelhampton Hall shortly after the fire. Taken by RCHME, November 1992
BB92/31650

Athelhampton Hall restored post fire
Athelhampton Hall restored post fire. Taken by RCHME, September 1993
FF93/00542



Case Study 2: What you might find for a village: Bisley, Gloucestershire

Bisley is a small, rural village in Gloucestershire set on a valley slope. At its core are a number of historic and picturesque Cotswold stone cottages. The photographs and documents retrieved by this search cover some of these cottages, the church, the school, the village pub and several farms and farmhouses. They also illustrate some more unexpected aspects of life in the parish.

All Saints Church is represented by photographs, which include details of the font taken in the 1930s and the stained glass windows, recorded sixty years later.

Exterior view from south,
All Saints, Bisley. Taken by Gordon Barnes,
June 1972. BB019922
Interior view looking north east,
All Saints, Bisley. Taken by Gordon
Barnes, June 1972. BB019923    

 

   
 Interior detail of east window
All Saints church, Bisley. Taken by RCHME, June 1998
BB98/13524
 Interior view, detail of font
All Saints Church, Bisley. Taken by Sidney Pitcher, 1930-1939.
AL0266/009/03

 The village has a lock up dating to 1824 with two cells for detaining drunks and criminals; a rare survival of this building type.

Bisley Lock Up. Taken by English Heritage, March 2000.
AA007828

The various houses in the parish of Bisley with Lypiatt are represented not only by photographs, such as that of Nether Lypiatt Manor (below), but also by estate agents sales particulars of a variety of dates.

Nether Lypiatt Manor, taken by RCHME, August 1998.
BB98/13787

   
 Estate sales particular for The Mansion
Dated 17th June 1949
SA00979
 Estate sales particular for The Frith
Dated 28th April 1964
SA02292

In 1996 Lypiatt Park, a notable house and estate in the parish which dates back to the mid 16th century, was the subject of an extensive photographic survey. The building file for Lypiatt also contains a number of reports on the associated buildings, such as the stable block, granary and dovecote. There are also copies of plans recording the various phases in the building’s life. At the time of the survey the house was the residence of the sculptor Lynn Chadwick. The photographs record the sculptor at work and the sculptures in their landscape setting.

Lypiatt Park 1812 view
BB97/6344

High Wind 1984 by Lynn Chadwick
Taken by RCHME, 1996. AA96/2366

Other records represent a snapshot of a bygone age, such as the photograph below of the Daneway Basin Lock on the Thames and Severn Canal taken by Henry Taunt in 1904.

Daneway Basin Lock
CC57/00109



Case Study 3: What you might find for a town: Stroud, Gloucestershire

Stroud is a small town in Gloucestershire which grew up as a result of the wool trade. The search results for Stroud include records for a wide range of buildings in the town; its churches, mills, hospitals and railway station. There are also detailed photographs and reports relating to some of the older domestic dwellings. The photographs and documents illustrate how the town has changed over time.

The earliest document for Stroud held by the Historic England Archive is an estate sales particular for The Grove Estate dated June 5th 1914. This document, produced by an estate agent to sell the property, describes each of the individual properties owned by the estate from the main house to the individual farms, woodland and workers' cottages. It includes a contemporary map showing the locations, land area and relationship of each of the lots.

The Grove Estate sales particular SCO0382

Other documents record buildings that have since been demolished. These include the Stroud Brewery Maltings, which stood in the Wallbridge area of the town until the 1960s and part of the High Street, which was demolished to make way for a bypass. The building file for 32-36 High Street includes a short written report and architectural drawings for 33 High Street.

Stroud Brewery Maltings Stroud Brewery Maltings
Taken by Eric de Mare, 1956. AA98/05289
Taken by Eric de Mare,
1956. AA98/05288

32-36 High Street
Taken by RCHME, 1976.BB93/21852
Short written report by RCHME for 33 High dated 1976

Records also show buildings in the town which still stand, but have since been restored or had their use changed. The Hill Paul Building in Cheapside, once a clothing factory employing many generations of local families, has in recent years been restored from the poor state of repair that it fell into post closure (as illustrated below) and converted into apartments. The building file for Cashes Green hospital, which was closed following changes in the NHS, includes a three page report on the history of the hospital, plans and some aerial photographs of the site

  
Hill Pauls Building 
Taken by English Heritage, December 2000 
AA0017399 
Cashes Green Hospital
Taken by RCHME, July 1993
BB93/21852

Ebley Mill was, like many mills in the Stroud valleys, water powered.  It was built as a textile mill in 1820-23, but like the majority of the mills fell out of production in the later twentieth century.  It has now been restored and houses the headquarters of Stroud District Council.

 
Ebley Mill with the weir in the foreground. 
Taken by Eric de Mare, 1956.AA98/04424 
BB98/13823
Ebley Mill as Stroud District Council's offices,
Taken by RCHME, July 1998.

Other photographs and documents record lost ways of life.  Dudbridge Foundry, recorded in 1996, has since been demolished. The photographs in the building file were taken on 19th July 1996; the last day that the foundry was in operation. The photographs record not just the foundry buildings, but the men at work in them. The building file contains a report on the history and development of the foundry.

Dudbridge Foundry, view of pouring metal into mould
Taken by RCHME, July 1996 BB96/10243
Part of page 1 of the RCHME report on Dudbridge Foundry written in 1996


Case Study 4: Finding photographs and documents for a type of building

The Royal Naval Hospital Haslar was the first purpose-built naval hospital for the sick and wounded in England.  It was built in the 1740s with various later additions including a mortuary and mortuary chapel in 1868 and a self contained isolation hospital in 1899. The Hospital was surveyed as part of a major national study of hospitals undertaken in the 1990s.

The archive holds two building files on the Royal Naval Hospital at Haslar: one for the main hospital, the other the Isolation Hospital and two measured drawings.

The building file for the main hospital (BF100117) contains a 14 page report and a large number of black and white interior and exterior photographs of the hospital buildings taken in July 1992. The file also contains a number of aerial views of the site.

Some items stand out: a colour tinted architectural drawing from the Property Services Agency Collection of the water tower can be compared with a photograph of the building itself. There is also a copy of an early postcard, sent by a patient, showing different views of the hospital.

Page 1 of the RCHME report written 1991, revised 1992

East Main Block, centre view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992    
BB92/29875 
Main Blocks, view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29866

 
Canada Block, central block from south east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992  
BB92/29871  
Medical Mess, view from south west
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29849
 
Chapel, view from north 
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992 
BB92/29845 
Chapel, interior view from north east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992             
BB92/29841
PTM 170 Elevation of water tower 18-04-81
PSA Collection 
BB92/25483 
Water Tower, view from east
Taken by RCHME, 16th July 1992
BB92/29890

An early postcard (copy).
AA92/02018