Focuses on the main locations for airchives, research and naval aviation libraries. The prime centre for Fleet Air Arm archives is the Fleet Air Arm Museum Records & Research Centre and the collections of  the RAF Museum, and the Imperial War Museum. The main depository of official documents about the Fleet Air Arm is the British Government's official records and archives depository "the Public Records Office". See the list of introductory leaflets describing the information available in the PRO.





  European Archival Network - Includes searchable directory of European archives; billed as "the primary site for all European archives that are referenced." See also information about the European Union Archive Network, a digital access initiative.

The International Council on Archives is the professional organization for the world archival community, dedicated to the preservation, development and use of the world's archival heritage

International Archival Resources on the Internet (U of S Links)

Repositories of Primary Sources - (Terry Abraham, University of Idaho). One of the most extensive list of links to respositories around the world.

UNESCO Archives Portal - Regarded as "an international gateway to information for archivists and archives users", this site's categories include archives, associations, conferences and meetings, education and training, international co-operation, internet resources, preservation and conservation, and primary sources online.



Directory of archives in the UK, with links to web sites.


PORT - online catalogue of high quality maritime related Internet resources

Research guides
Research Guide No. A1: Collections held in the National Maritime Museum, Library and Archives
Research Guide No. A2: Principal Records for Maritime Research at the National Maritime Museum
Research Guide No. A3: Tracing Family History from Maritime Records
Research Guide No. A4: Research at the National Maritime Museum
Research Guide No. A5: Picture Research at the National Maritime Museum

Research Guide No. B1: The Royal Navy: Tracing People
Research Guide No. B2: The Royal Navy: Bibliography
Research Guide No. B3: The Royal Navy: Sources for Enquiries
Research Guide No. B4: The Royal Navy: Researching Naval Portraits
Research Guide No. B5: Royal Naval Dockyards
Research Guide No. B6: The Royal Navy: Administrative Records
Research Guide No. B7: The Royal Navy: Ship Records


ARCHIVES   Fleet Air Arm Museum Records & Research Centre

The Records and Research Centre and the Centre for Naval Aviation Heritage assists hundreds of enquirers each year, from all parts of the globe. Regular assistance is provided to genealogists, modellers, veterans, local historians, historians, aircraft restoration projects, the press and other commercial organisations.

Collection: The Museum holds a wide range of documents from official and private sources, related to the British Naval Aviation. They cover areas such as aircraft, ships, equipment, air stations, operations and personnel. Amongst the most regularly consulted are the Squadron Line Books and Record Books , Air Publications and aircraft accident records. The Centre also holds the enlistment papers for First World War Royal Navy ratings and some Royal Marines.

The very large photograph collection covers all areas within the Museum's remit. It includes material from both official and private sources.

Research Services and Facilities Enquirers may conduct their research either in person or by post. Please contact the Centre in advance to discuss your area of research and to book an appointment.

Contact for further information

Records & Research Centre
Fleet Air Arm Museum

Box D6, RNAS Yeovilton
Near Ilchester, Somerset
BA22 8HT
Tel: +44 (0) 1935 840565
Fax: +44 (0) 1935 842630
E-mail: research@fleetairarm.com
WWW: http://www.fleetairarm.com/

Fleet Air Arm Officers Association Library and Research Facilities

The FAAOA has a very comprehensive library and is able to provide members with the facilities for carrying out extensive Naval and Naval Aviation research. There is an extensive range of books on Aviation matters available and also a wide selection of video tapes on Aviation. The FAAOA is also able to offer its members the ability to carry out historical research through its connections with the armed services. Members who would like to take advantage of this services should:

E-Mail: faaoa@fleetairarmoa.org
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7930 7722
Fax: +44 (0) 20 7930 7728
WWW: http://www.fleetairarmoa.org

Fleet Air Arm Telegraphist Air Gunners (TAG) Association Archives

The TAGA has a very comprehensive collection and TAG database information of which is available to members for carrying out extensive Naval and Naval Aviation research.

Ken Davies,
2 Burridges Close,
Bedford MK43 7QE
Tel. (44) 01234 822573
E-mail kandbd@btinternet.com
WWW: http://www.yeovilton.org.uk/tag.htm

British Aviation Photograph Collection

British Aviation Photograph Collection The A.J. Jackson Collection consists of a library, document collection and photographic archive, containing almost 30,000 negatives and several tens of thousands of prints. Including A-Z of BRITISH MILITARY AIRCRAFT NEGATIVE INDEX PAGE

The Churchill Archives


The Churchill Archives at Churchill College, Cambridge. Repository of many of Churchill's private and personal papers - copies of some of which are available on-line.


The Churchill Centre and the International Churchill Societies of Canada, Australia and the United Kingdom, which features Churchill's literature.

Commonwealth War Graves Commission

The Commission is responsible for the graves of the war dead. The Commission hols extensive archives on Fleet Air Arm personnel lost in 1939-1945. Its on-line Debt of Honour Register provides personal and service details and places of commemoration for the 1.7 million members of the Commonwealth Forces who died in the First and Second World Wars.

Visit more IWM sites...Imperial War Museum (London) - Collections and Research Departments

There are 7 Research and Collection Departments all with relevance for research on the Fleet Air Arm. Art Collection, Documents, Exhibits and Firearms, Film and Video Archive, Photograph Archive, Printed Books, Sound Archive. For contact information, see individual collections information or go to Reference Services.

Imperial War Museum
Lambeth Road
London SE1 6HZ
Tel: 0171-416-5353 / 5281
Fax: 0171-416-5379
WWW: http://www.iwm.org.uk/lambeth

Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives


A Centre for Military Archives at King's College London was set up in 1964. The Liddell Hart Centre for Military Archives holds the private papers of over 580 senior British defence personnel of the twentieth century. The Centre also holds a smaller but growing number of archives relating to television documentaries made by independent television companies on related topics, including nuclear history, the Falklands War, the Gulf War and former Yugoslavia.

Tel: 020 7848 2015, FAX: 020 7848 2760
E-mail address: archives.web@kcl.ac.uk.
WWW: http://www.kcl.ac.uk/lhcma/home.htm

Ministry of Defence


Contact: Naval Historical Branch, 3-5 Great Scotland Yard, London, SW1A 2HW

Contact: Air Historical Branch (RAF), Ministry of Defence, 3-5 Great Scotland Yard, London, SW1A 2HW


National Maritime Museum

Archives include Library Catalogue, Prints & Drawings Catalogue, Manuscripts Catalogue, Historic Photographs Catalogue, Picture Library, National Register of Historic Vessels. The Caird Library is the largest and most significant reference Library of its kind in the world. The collections cover every aspect of maritime affairs, containing important and unique materials which are freely available for consultation. Onlinre search engines include:

PORT ONLINE CATALOGUE Port is an online catalogue of high quality maritime related Internet resources. Every resource has been selected and described by a librarian or subject specialist. Services and materials developed by the Museum's Centre for Maritime Research are also available on this site.

National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London SE10 9NF
Telephone: (+44) 020 8858 4422 Fax: (+44) 020 8312 6632

Nautical Club
Contact: Alec R. Wright (Hon Secretary).
Nautical Club, Bishopsgate Street, Birmingham B15 1ET
Telephone: 0121 643 7786 (Club) or 0121 643 9475 (Office).
Email Address: nautical@lineone.net
WWW: http://website.lineone.net/~nautical/nauticalclub.htm

During its formative years the club has received an invaluable collection of ships plaques, paintings, photographs and other Navel memorabilia, which is unsurpassed anywhere in the country and which is still being added to even
today, this memorabilia is spread in showcases and around the walls where visitors can view artifacts of our Navel heritage both old and newly fashioned, together with paintings and photographs of some of our most famous fighting ships.

Public Records Office (see below)

The main deposity for Official archives of the United Kingdom, includingv all those pertaining to the Fleet Air Arm and its operations 19391-945. information includes:


Royal Air Force Museum  Collections: library, archives, film & sound (UK)

The Royal Air Force Museum exists to preserve, conserve and exhibit the history of the RAF and its relationship with aviation. There are significant records on the Fleet Air Arm and of its precursor the Royal Naval Air Squadron.  The Miseum aims to promote the public's understanding of the role and achievements of the RAF for the benefit of future generations. The Museum maintains substantial documentary holdings on the RAF, FAA and military aviation. These include microfilmed copies of aircraft accident cards and movement cards, the First World War (RNAS and RFC) casualty index, a large collection of Fleet Air Arm and RAF pilots' log books, and the records of the Fairey Aviation aircraft company. There is also a library and a photographic archive with a wealth of Fleet Air Arm information. Visitors by appointment only.

Department of Research and Information Services,
Royal Air Force Museum, Grahame Park Way, Hendon, London, NW9 5LL
Tel: (44) 020 8205 2266

Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts

Archon: Archives On-Line -- United Kingdom (Royal Commission on Historical Manuscripts)
Directory of archives in the UK, with links to web sites.


Royal Navy - The Admiralty Library

The Admiralty Library
This library in Whitehall also has material housed with the Royal Naval Museum, Portsmouth (see
below) and in the Hydrographic Office at Taunton, but initial enquiries should be made to the main
Admiralty Library address.

3-5 Great Scotland Yard
London SW1A 2HW
Tel: (+44) 020 7218 5446

Royal Naval Museum Library Royal Naval Museum Library

Naval and Maritime Libraries and Archives Group
Established in May 1999 under the auspices of the Royal Naval Museum Library with the purpose of creating an information network of naval and maritime libraries and archives throughout the UK.  The RN Museum, Portsmouth, became the official owners of the Wright & Logan ships collection and it is believed that prints will be made commercially available in the near future.

Royal Naval Museum Library
No 12 Store
Semaphore Tower Road
HM Naval Base
Hampshire PO1 3NH
Tel: (+44) 023 92723795

Scots at War Trust

Scots at War Trust - A project which aims to advance research in the history of Scots at war. Includes information on the Fleet Air Arm in Scotland in WW2.

Public Record Office, Kew, London

PUBLIC RECORDS OFFICE the National Archives of the UK. The Online Catalogue "PRO" - The catalogue of the UK Public Record Office at Kew in West London is now on line.This catalogue was last updated 02 Feb 2001 and contains 8,487,730 records.

Public Record Office (includes Family Records Centre) UK repository or state papers. It contains a wealth of all the key State documents concerning the Fleet Air Arm, including Prime Ministers records, Admiralty records, operational records, Aircraft Carrier logbooks, diaries and squadron records. There are very few Flying log books.

For further information look at the Records Information Leaflets.
Air Force: RAF Airmen's Service Records
Air Force: RAF Operations Records
Cabinet Records: War Cabinet (1939-1945)
Intelligence Records in the PRO
Navy: Royal,  Officers' Service Records
Navy: Royal, Officers' Service Records, First World War, and Confidential
Photographs in the PRO
Prisoners of War, British (1939-1953)
Prisoners of War and Displaced Persons (1939-1953)
RAF, Airmen's Service Records
RAF, Tracing an Individual - service records
Reports, 1893-1943
Navy: Royal, Operational Records 1939-1945
RAF: Operational Records of the RAF
Tracing a Missing Person

Fleet Air Arm PRO information sheet 

Control of the Fleet Air Arm after its formation in 1924, was divided between the Air Ministry and the Admiralty, which had operational control. The dissensions which arose from this division of responsibility are summarized in Director of Plans (AIR  9) piece 2. In 1937, following the recommendations of a Cabinet Committee, total  control passed to the Admiralty: the records of the Committee and associated Air  Ministry papers are in Committee of Imperial Defence: Ad Hoc Sub-Committee (CAB 16) pieces 151 and 152, and AIR 8 piece 229.

 Some operational records of the Fleet Air Arm for the period April 1933 to September 1943 are preserved in AIR 27 piece 2387. However the main series for the Second World War are in Fleet Air Arm Squadron Records (ADM 207): AIR 50 contains some supplementary material. Other records relating to the service during  the war can be found under Code 90 in both Admiralty and Secretariat Papers (ADM 1) and Admiralty and Secretariat Cases (ADM 116): additional information can be found in War History Cases and Papers (ADM 199). 

Reference PRO Leaflet: Operational Records of the Royal Air Force. Military Records Information 70


PRO leaflet: Royal Navy: Operational Records: Second World War, 1939-1945. Military Records Information 69

The Navy Lists - The confidential edition of the Navy List, containing the complete information on officers and ships which was omitted from the published edition in wartime, is in  ADM 177. The other lists are the:  Pink List - Location in port, though not position at sea, of all HM Ships and Naval Air Squadrons in commission. Issued  twice weekly ADM 187.  Red List -  Location in port, though not position at sea, of minor war  vessels in home waters. ADM 208. Blue List - Shipbuilding. Issued monthly ADM 209

Main Operational Records and Reports - The most important operational records are to be found in three series The original records of the Secretariat of the Admiralty are in ADM 1 and ADM 116. They are arranged by subject according to a system which is fully explained in the lists. In ADM 199. It is listed in very general terms, and in an almost completely random order. It contains a large number of reports of varying types, including:  Fleet Air Arm Squadrons: reports of actions, U-Boat Incidents, War Diaries (commands and squadrons), War Diary Summaries. 

Shipsí Logs - Logs of battleships, aircraft carriers, cruisers and armed merchant cruisers are in ADM 53, with some gaps caused by enemy action. 

Fleet Air Arm and Coastal Command: The surviving Operations Record Books of Fleet Air Arm Squadrons are in ADM 207 and AIR 27. Reports of Proceedings are with those of ships and squadrons in ADM 199 and elsewhere. The Headquarters Papers of Coastal Command are in AIR 15, with its Operations Record Books in AIR 24 and those of its squadrons and constituent formations in AIR 25, AIR 26 and AIR 27.  No Aircraft Carrier Flying Log Books are know to have survived. Fleet Air Arm and Coastal Command combat reports are in AIR 50. A few flying log books of RAF personnel serving with the Fleet Air Arm are in ADM 900.

Photographs -  Photographs of HM Ships are in ADM 176, but very much better collections of such photographs are held by the National Maritime Museum, Romney Road, Greenwich, SE10 9NF and the Imperial War Museum, Lambeth Road, London SE1 6HZ.


Ministry Of Defence Service Records Contacts

All applications should be made by writing or telephoning the following addresses:

For Ratings entered between 1924 and 1939
DR2A Search
Bourne Avenue
Hayes, Middx. UB3 IRF, UK
Tel: (UK) 023 92 702224

For Ratings entered after 1939
Centurion Building
Grange Road
Gosport, PO13 9XA, UK
Tel: UK 0208573 3831 Ext.341/342)

For Officers aged 60 or under (Pre-1916 records held at Public Records Office)
The Naval Secretary
Room 169
Victory Building
HM Naval Base
Portsmouth, PO1 3LS, UK


Ministry of Defence
Defence Records 2
Bourne Avenue

Hayes, Middx
Tel: UK 023 92 702224

 UK Ministry of Defence UK 08456 02 03 02

Armed Services Medal Offices. Write to:

    • Navy: NPP Acs 3 (b) 4, HMS Centurion, Grange Road, Gosport, Hampshire PO13 9XA
    • Royal Air Force: CS Sec 1d, Room F93, Building 256, HQ RAF PTC, RAF Innsworth, Gloucestershire GL3 1EZ
    • Royal Marines: Drafting and Record Office, Royal Marines, HMS Centurion; Grange Road, Gosport, Hampshire PO13 9XA


TRACING PEOPLE - Finding shipmates and people

Air and Ground Search - WWII focussed - looking for someone you served with, or for those from a unit or an aircraft you are researching?

www.watn.co.uk is a growing 'where are they now?' site for finding more recent ex RAF in particular

www.192.com provides an on-line search facility for people resident in
the UK.

Teletext pages on Channel 4

Teletext offers the following search and information pages either on internet at www.teletext.co.uk or for those with teletext capable tv sets receiving Channel 4 (UK reception area only):

     page 466 LOST TOUCH
     page 489 FAMILY TREE
     page 487 SERVICE PALS
     page 488 ASSOCIATIONS

To request that a message is placed on one of these teletext pages: send a short (up to 30 word) message on a postcard the message should include how viewers should contact you
(usually your name and telephone number - as it would be dialled from the UK) also on the postcard, give your full name and address for Teletext's own records send the completed postcard (addressed as appropriate) to Lost Touch/Service Pals/Family Tree/Associations, Teletext, PO Box 297, London SW6 1XT, UK

For information on progress towards making the Channel 3 and
Channel 4 teletext pages seen on screen available on the Internet
look at http://www.teletext.co.uk



The Australian War Memorial is a unique commemorative institution. It is a national memorial, an internationally renowned museum, and a research centre for Australian military history.

Australian National Maritime Museum and Museum Research Library

National Archives of Australia

Naval Historical Society of Australia

Register of Australian Archives and Manuscripts (RAAM) - contains records describing non-government archives held in Australian archival repositories and libraries.

RAAF Museum research

RAN photo archive


Royal Australian Navy - Personnel Service Records (Officers and Sailors)
Staff Officer Navy Records,
Queanbeyan Annex, Russell Offices,
Dept of Defence ACT 2600
Tel: +61 (0)2 6266 5964
Fax: +61 (0)2 6266 5966
e-mail: DNOP-records@cbr.defence.gov.au (for enquiries only)


The National Archives of Canada preserves Canada's archival heritage, and makes it available to Canadians through a wide variety of means - publications, exhibitions, special events, as well as reference and researcher services. Founded in 1872, the Archives' collections today include millions of records, including texts, photographs, films, maps, videos, books, paintings, prints and government files, that bring the past to life. We encourage all members of the public to visit the National Archives of Canada - to pursue a special field of research, to view the constantly changing exhibitions, to learn more about Canada's rich and diverse heritage.

National Archives of Canada
395 Wellington Street
Ottawa, Ontario  K1A 0N3

General information:
Local calls: 995-5138
Toll free: 1-866-578-7777 (Canada and U.S.A.)
TTD: 613-947-0391

The Canadian War Museum, is a living memorial to those men and women who served in Canada's armed forces. It is also a centre for research and the dissemination of information and expertise on all aspects of the country's military past from the pre-contact era to the present.

The Canadian Virtual War Memorial Register  database

MARITIME HISTORY ARCHIVE The Maritime History Archive collects and preserves original documents and copies of documents relating to the history of sea based activities in the north Atlantic region.

Canadian Heritage Information Network: Welcome to the gateway to museums, galleries, and heritage information in Canada and around the world. Use the site index to find your way



India Office Records, British Library

Royal Indian Marine/Navy service records c1840-1947 are in India Office Records, series L/MIL/16/1-9. They include European/Eurasian clerks, engineers and seamen as well as officers. The first five volumes give each person's date and place of birth and they also record any previous service in the Bombay or Bengal Marine Departments.

The British Library
Oriental and India Office Collections
96 Euston Road
London NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

Tel: +44 (0)20 7412 7873
Fax: +44 (0)20 7412 7641
Email: oioc-enquiries@bl.uk


The Malta Aviation Museum Foundation The aim of the foundation is to record, collect and preserve Malta's aviation heritage primarily by establishing and operating a Malta Aviation Museum belonging to the Foundation.


National Archives of New Zealand
Head Office, Wellington

    • Military Service Records prior to 1913 Rolls and other records from various military units, including soldiers who fought for the Crown in the New Zealand Wars.

Email: national.archives@dia.govt.nz

National Register of Archives and Manuscripts

RNZAF Museum research and studies department


National Library of South Africa

The National Library's collections contain a wealth of information sources, from rare manuscripts and foreign official publications to the extensive body of South African documents supplied in terms of legal deposit legislation.


There are archive repositories in Pretoria, Cape Town, Bloemfontein, Durban and Pietermaritzburg. They are responsible for the custody of the archives and other documents that have a bearing on the province in which they are situated. The National Archives in Pretoria houses the archives of central government departments and the Transvaal Archives Repository. The documents available at an Archives repository include: correspondence files, registers and other documents of government offices and the offices of local authorities that are, or were, located in the provinces concerned; photographs; maps; microfilms; and Estate files before the dates listed under The Master of the Supreme Court, for the various Provinces. Each Archives Repository has a library with books of a genealogical and historical nature, as well as microfilm readers.


The South African National Defence Force Archives have the Archives of the Commandant General, Transvaal Republic
1881-1899; Archives of the Military Governor, Pretoria, 1900-1902 (Records of the British Occupation forces, containing the names of those who died during the Anglo Boer War); Archives of the officer charged with gathering information concerning deaths among the Republican fighting forces and civilians, 1899-1902 (gives name of deceased, age, address and place of death). The particulars of all persons who served in the South African Armed Forces from 1910 are available from the SADF Documentation Centre. You need permission from the person concerned or from his eldest living relative to obtain information from these records. The Defence Force Archives are not open to the public, but you may write to obtain information. The Commonwealth War Graves Board has lists of casualties in South Africa, including South African deaths outside the country and British military deaths in South Africa.

SA Maritime Museum





Naval Aviation History Office at the Naval Historical Center

National Museum of Naval Aviation (Naval Aviation Library)

US Library of Congress

US Navy Photo gallery - image archives

AEROFILES - Aviation museums, search engine

Air Force Historical ResearchAgency

National Air and Space museum Collection and Research, and the Museum's  search form and tool

The National Aviation Hall of Fame


Naval History Information Center Guide Haze Gray & Underway
Information divided into world Aircraft carriers, battleships, cruisers, PT boats, musuems and preservation (including US naval & maritime museumInternational Naval and Maritime Museums List, US Preserved ships)

Navsource Naval History:  Images, History, Crew Contacts, Building, Service And Final Fate Information. The Largest US Navy Warship Photo Collection On The Internet


        Created: 3-3-2001 last modified 3-06-2005


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