§ Mr. Gordon Marsden
To ask the Secretary of State for National Heritage what assessment he has made of the impact of unitary authorities on the future funding and operation of county record offices and the Victoria County History. 225W
§ Mr. Fisher
My Department has issued guidance on the care and maintenance of local authority archives to every local authority affected by local government reorganisation, and monitored closely the effect of reorganisation on archives services, to help ensure that standards are maintained.
I am aware that the Victoria County History project has experienced difficulties due to the reduction or withdrawal of local authority funding in some cases. The National Heritage Act has widened the scope of the Heritage Lottery Fund to include support for the compilation and maintenance of archives. I understand that Victoria County History intends to bid for Lottery funds next year to support its important work.