Archives and records of the University of Reading

The Special Collections Service serves as the University Records Centre and as such has systematically collected, listed and preserved records reflecting every phase of the University's development.

Contents of the collection

The core collection consists of the formal archives of the University including:

  • minutes of governing bodies
  • property deeds and leases
  • some records of students (limited to Department and Faculty records, and pre-University records from the 1800s and 1900s - the majority of student records are held by the Student Records Office)
  • records of staff
  • some records of organised instruction
  • administrative and financial records of the Academic and Student Services Directorates (formerly the Registrar's Division)
  • administrative and financial records of the Facilities Management and Finance & Corporate Services Directorates (formerly the Bursar's Division)
  • administrative and financial records of individual teaching Departments

Supplementary collections contain photographs, prints, cuttings and printed ephemera.  The papers of ex-members of the University staff also form part of the archives.  At the University Library the R.U. Reserve collection contains published material by and about the University, its staff and students.

Catalogues and access

None of the archives have been catalogued online. Printed Disposal Lists have been made both of the Foundation Collection and of subsequent deposits, Department by Department. These list the contents of each deposit, their location, and detail any subsequent disposals.

With certain exceptions, University records more than thirty years old are available for research.

Records less than thirty years old are confidential to the originating Departments and may not be consulted without written permission of the Donor.

Due to the remote storage of these documents at least one day's notice must be given before records can be produced for consultation.

Publications on the history of the University

The following publications provide further information on the history of the University, copies are held by the University Library:

  • Childs, W.M. Making a University (J.M. Dent and Sons Limited, 1933)
  • The Library, University of Reading. Making a University: an exhibition.... (Reading, The University, 1968)
  • Childs, H. W.M. Childs: and account of his life and work (Oxford, Alden Press, privately printed 1976)
  • Holt, J.C. The University of Reading: the first fifty years (Reading, Reading University Press, 1977)
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