Archives & Special Collections house over 60 collections to support study and research. These include:
- the University's institutional archive, dating back to the foundation of Battersea Polytechnic in 1891
- the collections of the National Resource Centre for Dance
- several collections related to renowned illustrator E.H. Shepard (Winnie-the-Pooh, and The Wind in the Willows)
- a range of other subject-specific collections
We seek to preserve and make these collections available to researchers, students, and interested members of the public via our Research Room within the University Library, and through our enquiry service.
Access our Archives
The Research Room is on the ground level of the University Library and can accommodate up to 18 researchers at a time (up to 25 in a teaching session, induction or talk).
Researchers can access the Archives & Special Collections in a number of ways:
Requesting material to consult
When requesting material to consult ahead of your visit, we ask for a few days' notice to allow us time to retrieve the items you require. Depending on your request this can vary so do please email us with your requirements and we will endevour to meet them in as timely a manner as possible. Please use our online catalogue to help you find materials and their unique reference numbers.
Due to the unique nature of archive material our collections can only be accessed in our research room. Items from the collections are not available for borrowing.
We will contact you to confirm your appointment.
Copying of archive material is carried out by archive staff and is subject to both the condition of the material requested and the restrictions of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 and subsidiary legislation. Digital photography permits are also available.
Some collections may have further restrictions applied to reprographics depending on their terms of deposit. Please email the archives team with your requirements, or discuss in person during a visit to the Research Room. Fees apply.
For collections where we own the copyright in materials, we are able to license items for use in publications or other outputs. A Publishing Licence must be completed and its terms and conditions strictly adhered to. For materials where we don’t hold the copyright, researchers will be expected to seek permission from the copyright holder or demonstrate a process of ‘due diligence’ before we can provide items for publication. We may be able to help with copyright clearance related to our E. H. Shepard collections.
Donating and depositing records
We welcome all offers of donations and deposits to the Archives & Special Collections that fit within the scope of our Collection Development Policy. This policy is designed to support the research and teaching of the University of Surrey and to develop coherent collections which build on existing strengths. In considering whether the University is the right place for your collection we will look at the connection to the University, whether the records are of historical or research value and whether we have the right facilities to care for the collection in the long term.
For members of staff and internal departments we actively collect records created by the University, and many of our records are transferred directly from departments, schools and services by University staff. If you are looking to transfer material to the University Archives to be preserved please contact us. If you are looking to transfer items temporarily for storage, please review the information on the Information Compliance Unit pages.
We are also interested in recording the experiences of students and staff of the University and we are actively trying to grow this area of the archive. If you have any memorabilia and papers from your time here then please do contact us.