If you haven’t yet used the British Newspaper Archives yet, I’m sure you will be shortly, as the British Library’s vast collection of historical newspapers is one of the wonders of the world.

Containing newspapers from 1603 through to the present day, from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales and further afield. There are over 600,000 bound volumes of newspapers (occupying 32 kilometres, or 20 miles of shelving) and over 300,000 reels of microfilm (occupying a further 13 kilometres, or 8 miles of shelving). Until relatively recently the only way to view these newspapers was to visit the British Library, and, of course, it was not possible to search them.

Launched in 2011, the British Newspaper Archive website provides access to searchable digitised archives of British newspapers. The British Library in collaboration with Findmypast are making this vast collection of British, Irish, Scottis and Welsh historical newspapers accessible to everyone around the world, and preserving the originals while doing so.

The news just in is that the project has just hit the huge milestone by reaching 30,000,000 pages scanned (that’s 30 MILLION!!). This is now the three quarter mark of the proposed 40 million pages.


Unlike Australia’s Trove, the British Newspaper Archive is a pay site, and you can subscribe for a month, a year, or simply pay as you go:

  • 1 Month – £12.95
  • 3 Months – £25.92 (equivalent of £8.64/month)
  • 1 Year – £80.04 (equivalent of £6.67/month)

Note, if you don’t wish to subscribe, check with your local society or library, as many of them do have a British Newspaper Archive subscription. So it might be worth paying a visit to them.

For those not familiar with the British Newspaper Archive, here’s a short video showing how to search for someone in the newspapers. Remember the more you understand “HOW” to search, the more  you’ll get out of it.