Strictly speaking, the National Archives is an independent statutory body that functions within a Department of State. The Director of the National Archives is an independent statutory office holder. At present, the National Archives operates under the aegis of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Established under the National Archives Act, 1986, the National Archives is responsible for the preservation of the archival records of the following bodies: Departments of State; the courts; commissions and committees of inquiry established by Government, a Member of Government or the Attorney General; and 61 bodies named specifically in the schedule to the Act. The National Archives is also responsible for facilitating public access to archives. The Act also permits the National Archives to acquire archives from other bodies as private accessions.
Further information on the National Archives can be seen at www.nationalarchives.ie
Functions and Services:
Acquisition and preservation of archives, including conservation. Cataloguing archives. Provision of public access to archives.
Access to Services:
The National Archives operates a public Reading Room, which is open to the public, 10.00 am to 5.00 pm, Monday to Friday, with the exception of public holidays and other closure periods which are notified via our website and social media. Archives may be accessed by any member of the public holding a valid Reader’s Ticket, which is provided on foot of a personal application by a member of the public.
Access to archives in the National Archives is free of charge. Copies of archives can be provided on payment of relevant fees. Fees for copying and reproduction licensing are set out in the National Archives Fees Regulations 2012, which can be found at https://www.nationalarchives.ie/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/NationalArchivesAct_FeesRegulations2012.pdf
Classes of records held
Records relating to
- the processing of applications for a Reader’s Ticket;
- correspondence with members of the public concerning the holdings of the National Archives, and the use of, and access to archives
- provision of copies of archives and licensing for reproduction, publication and distribution
- budget, financial accounting
- housekeeping, security, facilities management
- acquisition of archives
- disposal of official records, including appraisal reports
- archival catalogues
- accommodation, including building projects
- conservation and preservation planning and operations
- staff training
- strategic and business planning
- legislative drafting and operation, including National Archives Acts, 1986 and 2018
- archival policy formulation and implementation
- meetings of National Archives Advisory Council
- participation on external statutory and professional bodies and organisations
Archival records received from central government bodies subject to the requirement to transfer archives to the National Archives and of bodies from whom archives are accessioned by donation or deposit.