accessibility & help

Visit our museum and archives and FAQs

Find out about the services and information we provide, how to visit to our collection, and answers to frequently asked questions about our museum collection.

Tours and research visits

You are welcome to book research appointments and tours of our archive. Due to space and staffing considerations, both tours and research appointments must be booked in advance via email. 

Availability is limited. The maximum size of a tour group is 10. Please contact us as enquiry@redcross.org.uk for more information.

Our enquiry service

We offer an enquiry service that provides information about the personnel records we hold for the First and Second World Wars and our other collections.

We regret that we do not have the capacity to offer a research service. We can provide advice on whether we hold materials relating to your query. We can also help arrange a research visit if there are materials you would like to examine in person. Please contact us at enquiry@redcross.org.uk for more information.

For First World War personnel enquiries please search our online database in the first instance to check for a relevant record. You can also refer to the museum and archives pages for information about our history. These include a selection of historical factsheets on common enquiry topics.

We will try to respond to all enquiries within three weeks, but responses may take longer during busy periods. We do not charge for this enquiry service, but we do request a donation of £5 or more to help cover costs. You can donate via PayPal or by a cheque made payable to the British Red Cross and sent to Museum and archives, 44 Moorfields, London, EC2Y 9AL.  

We aim to answer enquiries in the order received, although when multiple enquiries from an individual or organisation are submitted, those received from new users will be prioritised.

Please note that we cannot guarantee to hold the relevant information to answer your enquiry. We will endeavour to direct you to other sources of information where possible.  

Reproductions of material: photocopies and scans

We can only scan or photocopy material if there is no risk of causing damage to the items.

This service is designed to support individual research. We reserve the right to place a maximum limit on the number of copies when a significant number are being requested. 

For searching for and scanning Second World War VAD Personnel Cards we apply a fee of £5 per card.

We will otherwise provide one digital scan or one page of photocopying free of charge. The following charges will be applied to all additional reproductions we undertake on your behalf.

Digital scan

Cost

Delivery

Black and white/colour (A4) £2 per page Free
Black and white/colour (A3) £4 per page Free


Printed scan

Cost

Delivery

Black and white/colour (A4) £5 per page (per 20 sheets) £5 UK
(per 20 sheets) £10 overseas
Black and white/colour (A3) £6 per page (per 20 sheets) £5 UK
(per 20 sheets) £10 overseas


Photocopy

Cost

Delivery

A4 50p per page (per 20 sheets) £5 UK
(per 20 sheets) £10 overseas
A3 £1 per page (per 20 sheets) £5 UK
(per 20 sheets) £10 overseas

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Collections

Do you have any information about Red Cross medals and badges?

Yes, please see our medals and badges pages.

I would like to donate a uniform/badge/photograph/autograph album to the collection. What should I do?

We would be interested in receiving a detailed list of any potential items and any supporting information you may have. This will help to consider the items according to our acquisition and disposal policy. Please contact us at enquiry@redcross.org.uk for more information.

Unfortunately, we are unable to accept all the items we are offered, especially if they duplicate items already in the collection. 

Family history

I'm researching my family history and I think one of my ancestors was a Red Cross nurse (VAD). Do you have any information?

Yes, possibly. Find out what kind of information we hold in our personnel records.

I'm researching my family history and one of my ancestors served in the military. Do you have any records?

No. We hold records of British Red Cross personnel. You may find other organisations, listed on the useful contacts page, are able to help you.

I'm researching my family history and one of my ancestors served in the Australian/Canadian/South African/New Zealand Red Cross. Do you have any records?

No. If your ancestor served with a specific Red Cross society, we encourage you to contact the relevant Red Cross society in the first instance.

Prisoners of war

I'm looking for records of a prisoner of war. Do you have any?

Most records regarding prisoners of war (both British PoWs in other countries, and international PoWs in the UK) are held by the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva.  

Find out how to apply for prisoner of war records. Our own records on prisoners of war are extremely limited, and mostly consist of war-time magazines produced for family members.

I'm writing a book about prisoners of war. Do you have any information about Red Cross food parcels?

Yes, see our page about food parcels.

School projects

I'm doing a project at school about the Second World War. Do you have any information about what the Red Cross did during the war?

Yes, check out our history section or visit Caring on the home front, our website dedicated to the work of the Joint War Organisation. You might also want to look at our Second World War picture gallery, but please do not use any of our photos without our permission.

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