Hampshire Record Office

Portsmouth History Centre

The Office is based on the second floor of Portsmouth Central Library.  

Records include resources regarding family, local and naval history and Arthur Conan Doyle and Charles Dickens collections.  

Resources include official records of Portsmouth City Council dating from the 14th century, parish registers dating from the 16th century and materials deposited by local businesses, families and other organisations. They also have maps and plans, photographs and picture postcards.

Information regarding Portsmouth Archive


Portsmouth History Centre 
Norrish Central Library 
Guildhall Square 


023 9268 8046 



For details of their opening hours and their collections, please visit the appropriate sections of their Home Page and discover more about their resources.  Parish records for the Diocese of Portsmouth are accessible on microfiche along with cemetery burial indexes.  A number of books are also available, which include:

  • Army, Navy and Air Force Lists
  • Census books
  • Clergy Lists
  • Domesday Book
  • Genealogical periodicals
  • Heraldry, peerage and Coats of Arms
  • Place and personal names

Many documents are stored off-site so must be ordered in advance and take up to 5 working days to be delivered to the Archive.  If the document you wish to consult is available in the Office, you do not need to give advance notice to consult it. Some documents are not publicly accessible because of data protection laws or are fragile.

A cafe is located on the third floor of the library and serves light lunches, snacks and homemade cakes.  Cold drinks, tea and coffee are also available.

A lift allows access to the second floor, with toilets being available on the second and third floors.

Portsmouth Archives is a member of the CARN (County Archive Research Network)

Southampton City Archives

They hold resources dating back to 1199.  Whether you are tracing your genealogy, searching for the history of a house or wanting to learn more about your local community, you will find the resources held of use.

Information about Southampton Archives


Southampton City Archives 
Civic Centre 
Civic Centre Road 
SO14 7LY 

Telephone Number:

023 8083 2251 



For details of their directions, opening hours and collections, please visit their Home Page. Details about the Central index of Merchant Seamen is accessible from this page, which was compiled using one million and a quarter navy service record cards.  Dating from 1918-1941, this Index contains details of people serving on British registered ships during this period.  
The Archive has many documents relating to the history of Southampton, which include Southampton corporation records:

  • Town Administration records
  • Property records
  • Finance and trade
  • Justice
  • Poor Relief
  • Military
  • Parliamentary Taxes

Records of Local Boards, commissioners and companies include:

  • Pavement and Improvement Commissioners
  • Southampton Board of Health
  • Shirley Board of Health
  • Board of Guardians
  • Waterworks
  • Southampton School Board
  • St Mary Extra School Board
  • Hound and Sholing School Board

Records of Local Boards, commissioners and companies also include:

  • Itchen Urban District
  • Bitterne Parish Council
  • Millbrook Parish Council
  • North Stoneham Parish
  • South Stoneham Parish
  • Northam Bridge Company
  • Floating Bridge Company

They also have records of Southampton council departments, which incorporate:

  • Architect
  • Building Control
  • Education
  • Engineer
  • Fire Brigade
  • Magistrates Court
  • Motor Taxation
  • Police Force
  • Treasurers

Further details about any of these collections are available.

The Civic Centre is close to bus stops.  They are 5 minutes walk from Southampton Central Railway Station.  To locate the Archive, follow the signs to the city centre.

If you are unable to visit in person, a Research Service is offered.

They are a member of the CARN (County Archive Research Network) 

For further information regarding Record Offices in Hampshire, please visit my page regarding Hampshire Record Office.

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