The history of record keeping

The early archive of the Lords

What were the first records of Parliament?

The Lords Archive in the 16th and 17th centuries

How did the Lords Archive gradually take on a more modern form?

Storage at the Jewel Tower

How did the Jewel Tower play an important role in the preservation of Parliamentary records? Find out more about the Tower between the 17th and 19th centuries

The early archives of the Commons

What were the first records of the House of Commons?

Surviving the 1834 fire

A fire destroyed much of the medieval Palace of Westminster in 1834. How did the records of the House of Lords survive?

The Early 20th century

How Parliament started to improve its record keeping and create a modern archive service

Evacuation during the Second World War

What happened to the records of Parliament during the Second World War? Find out more about a dramatic scene which unfolded at the top of the Victoria Tower.