Libraries and archives

Find out about the history of the Church of England at the Lambeth Palace Library and the Church of England Record Centre.
Old church architectural drawings in drawer

Lambeth Palace Library is the historic library and record office of the Archbishops of Canterbury. The records held here date from the 9th century to the present day. As well as church history, the library contains books and manuscripts that have been gifts from different archbishops over the centuries. Some of these are extremely rare and important.

The Church of England Record Centre houses the archives of the central organisations of the Church of England. This includes the Church Commissioners, General Synod and the National Society for Promoting Religious Education.

The Record Centre also produces guidance for the wider church, including parishes, dioceses, cathedrals and bishops' offices. The guidance covers topics such as safeguarding, clergy personal files, managing email, looking after paper records and data protection.

Lambeth Palace Library and the Church of England Record Centre share a website and a catalogue but are in different locations in London.

Other resources

The Cathedral Archives, Libraries & Collections Association website has information about libraries and archives in cathedrals and links to their websites.