TNA is perhaps most famous for providing information so that the public can investigate their family history; it has been featured extensively on the BBC’s programme, Who do you think you are? It is also a vital resource for academic research.
In July 2009 management at TNA told us that 10% cuts were necessary to make sure they could continue to operate. The proposals included job losses, closing the archives to the public one day a week, replacing the face-to-face welfare service with a telephone welfare helpline for staff and charging for the use of the car park.
We contacted some of the past participants of the BBC programme 'Who do you think you are' and we received a supportive statement from Ainsley Harriot:
"As a past participant of ‘Who do you think you are’ I’m offering my support to defend services at The National Archives (TNA). The proposals to cut 10% of the organisation’s budget concern me, as I think that members of the public looking up their family history will find it more difficult as there will be less staff and resources available at the archives to assist them.
When making the programme I found the staff at the archives really helpful and so I would encourage everyone to support the campaign to keep the archives well resourced and a valued treasure for future generations."
Campaigning throughout the summer
Our members want to provide a quality public service and we believe management’s plans will have a huge impact on the public's access to history.