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Old 26th February 2008, 23:00
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National Archives: building work

Has anyone been there recently? The NA is open but their website is trying very hard to discourage visitors because of the work going on and I want to know whether going there at the moment would just be a waste of time.

Thanks.
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Old 27th February 2008, 00:27
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Re: National Archives: building work

I've been there on 09/02 and it was better than late last year and early January. Main documents reading room is operating, I would say, with 1/4 of the normal capacity or so. Microfilm/microfiche reading room looked much better (the number of microfilm readers available) than when work had started. All microfilm/microfiche cabinets moved to previously walled off part of the first floor room, behind what used to be long big help desk. You'll notice the main difference being, and for me the most annoying, the security barrier for sweeping cards was moved to the first floor just in front of the entrance to the main documents reading room, so no more free roaming fro/to documents room and microfilm room. We can just hope it is a temporary solution or they don't rate microfilms as valuable holdings anymore.
The ground floor suffered a lot of work being done as well, coffee-bar moved to where a small internet room used to be, they are refurbishing the restaurant, and I suppose when they finish all work the price of a limp piece of fish and chips will be tenner at least.
Overly intrusive security staff still there, ugly blue jackets still there, and man, yellow order slips with your name are everywhere, I am gonna start collecting them and selling on e-bay.
But, I still love the place and happy research.
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Old 27th February 2008, 01:09
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Re: National Archives: building work

My friend was there few weeks ago and searching something for me.
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Old 28th February 2008, 10:56
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Re: National Archives: building work

Nick

From my own experience and talking to others it seems to me that the amount of disruption varies and it is not easy to generalise as they keep moving around with the partitioning.

If you want to use the document room then the advice on the website about "first come first served" is well worth noting!

Steve
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Old 28th February 2008, 19:56
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Re: National Archives: building work

The building work is due to finish in April. At the moment they have opened a larger reading area so there is now not so much pressure on getting there early. Why would you want to buy their expensive food when M&S are only 5 minutes walk away. The blue-coated guards are not that bad after the gun-totin' equivalents at US NARA.
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Old 28th February 2008, 23:04
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Re: National Archives: building work

Quote:
Originally Posted by steve248 View Post
Why would you want to buy their expensive food when M&S are only 5 minutes walk away.
Because in all these years I'd never clocked that there was an M&S nearby!
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Old 28th February 2008, 23:19
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Re: National Archives: building work

It is in the retail park just before you turn left to TNA. Another useful thing that isn't obvious: there is a free-to-use cashpoint in the M&S.

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