Millions of school records covering every region of England and Wales from 1870-1914 are going online. This will be a significant source of information for family historians.

The following information was posted on the UK and Ireland Archives and Records Association (ARA) website:

Contracts have been signed by ARA and brightsolid after agreement was reached to digitise records from a large number of archives operating under the new National Digitisation Consortium

Now the high-level contracts are signed, all archives which declared an interest to take part are being contacted about their formal sign-up to the deal.

The National Digitisation Consortium was an Association of Chief Archivists in Local Government inspired initiative and has been an active but complex project since the merger which formed the ARA. In the first project under the Consortium framework, 120 English and Welsh archives are expected to come together to achieve the digitisation of pre-1914 school registers. Millions of names will be searchable.

The Consortium is seen as an important way for the sector to work together to ensure the best possible revenue deal for individual archives.  ARA and brightsolid are now determined to move the project forward as quickly as possible.

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