Sandwell Community History and Archive Service

Sandwell Community History and Archive Service collects and preserves archives and published materials relating to the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell, situated in the West Midlands.  

These records include books, original borough records, documents, manuscripts, maps, newspapers and photographs.  

The Office's public searchroom is based in Smethwick Library.

The Record Office also hold the records of Chance Brothers & Company Limited, which was one of the biggest glass manufacturers in Britain.

Whatever the reason for your visit, whether you wish to research the history of a house, conduct research for a school, college or university assignment, study your family history or are interested in local history, you will the documents held of use.  

The knowledgeable and helpful staff are always on hand to help should you have any questions or require assistance.

If you have any historical documents relating to the Metropolitan Borough of Sandwell that you would like to donate to the Archive to safeguard them for present and future generations and to make them available to the public, they would love to hear from you.

Contact Information for Sandwell Community History and Archive Service


Sandwell Community History and Archive Service
Smethwick Library 
High Street 
B66 1AA 

Telephone Number:

0121 558 2561 

Fax Number:

0121 555 6064 



For information about their collections, please visit their collections page.  You can also search their online catalogue, but only a small proportion of their collections is catalogued at present.  Collections held by the Office include:

  • Borough Records
  • Burial and Cremation Records
  • Business Records 
  • Census Returns 1841-1911
  • Churchyard Records
  • Court Records
  • Faith Records
  • Family and Personal Records
  • Maps and Plans
  • Newspapers
  • Organisation and Society Records
  • Photographs
  • School Records

Electoral Registers are also held in the Archive, which include:

  • Oldbury - 1946
  • Rowley Regis - 1950 onwards
  • Smethwick - 1899 onwards
  • Tipton - 1919 onwards
  • Wednesbury - 1877 onwards
  • West Bromwich - 1883 onwards
  • Darlaston - 1950-1947

Opening Hours

For details about their opening hours, please visit the opening hours page.

Location and Directions

A car park is available on Stony Lane and parking bays are accessible on High Street and Stony Lane.

The Office is approximately five minutes walk from Smethwick Rolfe Street railway station and fifteen minutes from Smethwick Galton Bridge railway station.

Buses 53, 80, 87 and 89 stop close to the Archive.


You are advised to book before visiting because it can become very busy and also if you wish to access original documents.


You are able to use a digital camera in the searchroom, but a charge is made to customers taking advantage of this service.  Some documents cannot be photographed because they are fragile and easily damaged.


The Office's searchroom is fully accessible to anyone using a wheelchair and many other adaptations have been installed for disabled users, including an adjustable table, hearing loop and a computer with adaptive software.  Disabled-access customer toilets are also available.  A member of staff is trained in the use of British sign language.


Eating establishments are available in Smethwick, approximately 10 minutes (½ mile) walk from the Archive.

Research Service

research service is offered for anyone unable to visit in person.

Readers' Tickets

Sandwell Archives is a member of the CARN (County Archive Research Network)

For further details of Record Offices in Staffordshire, please visit my pages regarding Staffordshire Record Office, Dudley Archives, Stoke on Trent City Archives and Walsall Local History Centre.

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