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Archives Council Wales was established in May 1995 as a representative body for institutions and organisations from all parts of Wales involved with the administration of archives. It changed its name in November 2004 to Archives and Records Council Wales (ARCW).

The aims of ARCW are:

  1. To influence policy on archives in Wales.
  2. To bring to the attention of the public, government or relevant institutions or organisations, matters of current concern in the field of archives in Wales.
  3. To provide a focus for collaborative projects in the field of archives in Wales.
  4. To bring together institutions and organisations involved with the administration of archives in Wales and to provide a forum for the regular exchange of views between them.

Membership of ARCW currently stands at 22, consisting of representatives from each of the 13 local government archive services in Wales, each of the five universities in Wales which employ an archive professional and from the following national institutions and bodies:

  • National Library of Wales
  • National Museum Wales
  • Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales
  • University of Aberystwyth Archive Course

In addition, the following bodies have observer status:

  • The National Archives
  • CyMAL: Museums Archives and Libraries Wales
  • Society of Archivists
  • Welsh Government: Library and Archive Services
  • An appropriate all-Wales records management body (currently the Records Management Society)

View ARCW’s strategy for 2008-10.

ARCW has in the last few years run projects and commissioned reports in
order to help develop and improve archives services in Wales.  Several
of the reports can be viewed here by clicking the links below:

  • Ask the People’ (2007) A consultation with stakeholders and target audiences to gather evidence on aspirations and potential barriers relating to online access to archives in Wales.
  • The National Audience Development Plan (2008) A key document in planning for the future development of archive services in Wales, this report concentrates on non-users’ preconceptions of archives and real and perceived barriers to access.
  • Catalog Cymru (2008) A research project on the backlog of uncatalogued archive material in Wales. It establishes priorities for action using existing methodology and defines future priorities for cataloguing projects.
  • Inspiring Learning through Archives (2008) An analysis of how the use of archives in education in Wales could be improved, especially in support of the Wales National Curriculum.  It also seeks to identify methods to embed the Inspiring Learning for All framework into archive services in Wales.