Records Management Guides

The records management guides (accessible by clicking on the resources links to the right of this page) have been researched and produced by records and archive management specialists at the Church of England Record Centre, drawing on expert advice from The National Archives, Local Record Offices and the wider archive profession.

*NEW* December 2015 - Safeguarding Records - factsheet on retention for safeguarding records to accompany advice from the House of Bishops.

These guides are designed to help parishes, dioceses, Bishops and cathedrals develop a consistent and best practice approach to the treatment of Church records in their care whether paper or electronic.  There is a separate guide for each specific set of Church records.  Each guide contains some general records management advice alongside detailed guidance on the retention of record types associated with each area.  This general advice has been expanded and updated where appropriate to form a series of 11 factsheets – the records management toolkit (also available under resources).  The factsheets cover various records management topics in bite-size sections.

Chapter and Verse – The Care of Cathedral Records(published June 2013) has been jointly produced with the Cathedral Libraries and Archives Association to support cathedral staff in managing their records from the point of creation, through to their destruction or permanent retention as an archive record.

Cherish or Chuck? – The Care of Episcopal Records (published December 2009) is designed to support Bishops offices and staff in managing the records created in the course of the diocesan, national and other work undertaken by their Bishop.

Save or Delete? – The Care of Diocesan Records(revised December 2008) is designed to support diocesan offices and staff to manage the mass of information that they create and manage in support of the work of the diocese, enabling them to easily identify what needs to be kept and what can safely be destroyed.

Keep or Bin? – The Care of Your Parish Records(revised April 2009) is designed to help clergy and parish officers to understand which records need to be kept by the church, which should be sent to the local archive centre, and which can simply be disposed of as confidential waste.

Personal Files Relating to Clergy – Guidance for Bishops and their staff (revised May 2018) is approved by the House of Bishops and designed to help ensure that clergy files are managed to the highest standards. 

If you are unable to download copies, paper copies can be requested from the Church of England Record Centre.

Address: 15 Galleywall Road, South Bermondsey, London SE16 3PB.