Future Record Office Service in Lowestoft

Consultation closed – 2/11/2018

The consultation closed on Thursday 1 November 2018 at 11:59pm.

The questionnaires and comments received will be reviewed and analysed and a report presented to Suffolk County Council Cabinet on 4th December 2018.

Consultation open – 21/09/2018

Suffolk County Council is seeking views on proposals for the future of Record Office services in North East Suffolk. The six-week consultation, will run from 9.00am on Friday 21 September to 23.59 on Thursday 1st November 2018.

For more information and to have your say, please visit: www.suffolk.gov.uk/lroconsultation

Lowestoft Record Office consultation FAQs

Future Record Office Service in Lowestoft – 01/08/2018

For the protection of vulnerable collections, it’s clear that changes must be made to the service we offer in Lowestoft and north-east Suffolk. An archive service for Lowestoft and north-east Suffolk will continue and this provides opportunity for positive change. Suffolk County Council will be consulting on the future of the Record Office Service for North-East Suffolk later this year.

Pre-engagement Workshops Report – 10/05/2018

Following the 3 pre-engagement workshops held on 9th and 12th April, the independent facilitator’s report is now available: Lowestoft Record Office Pre-consultation Workshops Report

Everyone will have an opportunity to feed into the full consultation process.  Further information and the online survey will be accessible in due course on Suffolk County Council’s consultation webpage: www.suffolk.gov.uk/consultations

Statement from Suffolk County Council – 22/02/2018

Suffolk County Council to consult on future Record Office Service in Lowestoft

 Suffolk County Council has today announced that it will hold a public consultation over the future of the Record Office Service in Lowestoft.

The current Record Office building is not sustainable to continue holding Lowestoft’s archive material. Its basement location means that it is prone to flooding and damp hazards, at risk of mould growth and fire resistance is not up to the required standard.

This, along with the general decline in visitors and the council’s on-going requirement to make savings in line with its objectives to fill the budget gap of £56m by 2021, means that changes need to be made to the service in Lowestoft.

Cllr Tony Goldson, Cabinet member for Health, said: “We have listened to concerns raised by local residents and as a result we will be formally consulting on the future of the Record Office Service in Lowestoft. We will be meeting with local historians and interested parties over the coming weeks to form proposals for the future of the service, with the view of the formal consultation beginning late spring.  Our priority remains the safeguarding and preservation of Suffolk’s archives in the best possible conditions for the use of current and future generations.”

The results of the formal consultation will be presented to Suffolk County Council’s Cabinet Committee later in the year for a final decision to be made on the future service provision.


Timeline for the consultation

The consultation process is outlined below.
This will continue to be updated throughout the process with dates and information as this becomes available.

Spring 2018 | Pre-Engagement (Complete)

  • Engage with Stakeholders to seek draft proposals and alternative solutions
  • Collate results to inform content of formal consultation
July/August 2018 | Options appraisal (Complete)

  • Exploration of location options, informed by results of the pre-engagement
  • Cost analysis and feasibility work
  • Agree content of formal consultation
21st September – 1st November 2018 | Formal public consultation

  • Articulate vision and consult on proposals
November – December 2018 | outcome

  • Complete analysis and review of consultation
  • Report consultation outcomes and final decision presented to Cabinet – 4th December
  • Apply for TNA accreditation
Early 2020 | New Service

  • The new Lowestoft Record Office service begins
  • The Hold building in Ipswich opens
  • Vulnerable collections are moved to the new strongrooms