Wandsworth Local History Service

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Wandsworth Local History Service holds archive information for Wandsworth and the areas that now fall within the borough boundary, including Putney and Battersea.

Authority London Borough of Wandsworth
Location Battersea Library, Lavender Hill, SW11 1JB. See map
Membership/ID None required
Photocopy policy Not known
Camera policy Not known

What is held here

The Service looks after historical documents created by the London Borough of Wandsworth, and also the predecessors in areas that now fall within the Borough. In road terms it has little in the way of official documentation, and its real strength is in its enormous collection of newspaper back copies. This area of London has been home to scores of local newspapers at one time or another and any back copy can be easily called up and viewed on microfilm.

How to use it

Battersea Library is easily accessed from Clapham Junction railway station. On entering, head up the stairs and follow the signs. The archive room looks just like a local studies room should, with a high ceiling, ancient furniture and old leather-bound books lining every wall.

Visitors are well advised to enquire in advance by e-mail (through the website) as the staff can then look up information and have items waiting for you when you arrive.

A normal card index system allows you to look up information on any topic. This turns up references in newspapers.

Much information is stored on microfilm, but it's easily possible to print from these onto A4 paper at any page and magnification. It works much like a photocopier with a coin slot. There is no restriction on copying in this way.

The above comes from a few hours at the archive. Wandsworth Local History Service may have much more to offer aside from newspaper cuttings and deserves another look.

Items found here

  • Newspaper coverage of Ringway schemes across south-west London
  • Local government action over the Ringway schemes as reported in local press

Nearby facilities