County records office gets thumbs up

A treasure trove of information about the county’s past has been given a huge vote of confidence by the people who use it.

Almost five thousand people visit North Yorkshire County Council’s Records Office every year with nearly three quarters of them researching their family histories.

And the latest figures from the UK Archives Visitor Survey show that 98% of visitors rate it as good or very good for the quality of advice, the helpfulness and friendliness of its staff, and its opening hours.

The survey is conducted across the country every 18 months, and is the most comprehensive analysis of user satisfaction and demographics in the world.

The new data, gathered in March this year, shows that of the visitors to the North Yorkshire County Records Office in Northallerton, 72% were conducting family history research and 12% were engaged in formal education projects, nearly 80% are over the age of 55, and 45% spend three hours or more in the Office.

The survey also demonstrates how the Records Office helps to boost the local economy, with 21% of users paying for overnight accommodation and 48% eating out locally during their visits.

County Councillor Chris Metcalfe, executive member with responsibility for the records office said: “We are delighted to have achieved such a high level of user satisfaction.

“At the same time this survey helps us to identify suggested improvements to visitor facilities, and we do will do all we can to address the comments we have received”.