Shortly after the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) was established in 2005, many thousands of public records dating from the nuclear industry’s earliest days were transferred to its ownership from a range of sources, including the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) which was established in 1954 and was responsible for the UK's entire nuclear programme. The NDA is responsible for safeguarding this, and other collections, as well as ensuring compliance with legislation on public accessibility and security. The NDA, Ministry of Defence and the Atomic Weapons Establishment are jointly undertaking a security review to ensure that it is appropriate for the records to remain in the public domain. As part of the review process, a collection of records (including many relating to the early development of military and civil nuclear technology) has been temporarily withdrawn from general access via The National Archive at Kew.
During the review period, requests for the documents are being handled through the freedom of information inquiry route. Once the review is complete, it is anticipated that public access will be restored to the vast majority of the documents.