Leaking Dome at National Records of Scotland Causes Massive Damage to Precious Historical Documents

National Records of Scotland (NRS) on Princes Street

Here is another case where digitizing copies of important documents and storing the digital images in multiple “off site” locations is always a good idea. Some of Scotland’s precious and irreplaceable historical records have been damaged after torrents of rain leaked in through a dome which has needed repair work for a number of years.

The damage to a host of documents, including marriage and death certificates dating from 1800, occurred last Tuesday night at the National Records of Scotland (NRS), following hours of torrential rain and thunder storms swept large parts of Scotland.

Former employees said the dome, at the back of the building, had been leaking for many years but that despite it being reported on many occasions by a large number of staff it was not given priority for repair.



Sad. Are these affiliated with Scotland’s People?


There were concerns about leaking many years ago when I was there – just listened in to what some of the staff were saying on their lunch break! Hope it’s none of mine that got wet as I’m still looking for information – OK or anyone else’s who hasn’t got the info as yet!


This is rather inaccurate. The Deputy Keeper of Records has described the damage in an email
“a small number of records … dating from the late 19th century to the mid 20th century” “all affected records have been successfully treated by our team of expert conservators. No documents were lost.”
So no massive damage and no damage to anything as old as 1800.
These records are already available digitally via the SoctlandsPeople website.


Sounds very similar to the loss of Irish census data for 1831 to 1891. Someone did not follow up properly.


This report is not true : damage was not ‘massive’, nor were documents lost. Moreover the National Records of Scotland have stated that “All records held in New Register House have been digitised and where open to public access, can be accessed online via our ScotlandsPeople website.” Moral : don’t believe everything you read in newspapers !


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