The West Midlands is fortunate to have an amazingly rich and diverse range of archives. Local authorities, universities, cathedrals and independent organisations and businesses ensure that these unique records of the region are made accessible today and kept in care for the future.
Alongside that core purpose, archives in the region are making significant contributions in areas such as skills and employability, community engagement, health and wellbeing, and tourism.
To sustain the excellent work being done in archives, especially in these times of financial constraint, it is important that archives work together collaboratively like never before.
The possibilities of coming together to share knowledge and expertise are far greater than if archive services worked in isolation.
As a result of this, archive services across the West Midlands are forming a new organisation that will help to promote the valuable contribution that archives make to people’s lives and present opportunities to work in collaboration to achieve more than a single archive could do on its own.
Archivists in the region have, for many years, been working together to share ideas and good practice. They believe that the time has come to formalise that arrangement in a new organisation that will be independent, strong and have the potential to raise support and funding for collaborative work.
The National Archives is delighted to have supported the foundation of Archives West Midlands. Both organisations look forward to working together to promote collaboration between archives across the region.