We look forward to seeing you!

The Archive and Study Centre is here to provide help and support to researchers of all kinds and at all levels, and to facilitate access to a remarkable specialist library and a wealth of original documents and recorded memories and events. 

Because of limited staffing and resources - there is currently only one part-time archivist and an ambitious programme of fieldwork, cataloguing, preservation and development - it is essential to arrange visits well in advance. 

Our approach to researchers and other users of the resources:

"The life blood of any archive and research library are the researchers who explore and discover the riches in the collections, and then take them back out to share with the rest of the world."

For more on our approach and philosophy see "What are archives, and when are they happiest?"

"May I come? And what should I expect?"

We welcome everyone, whether your interest is

    • family or personal history,  
    • the statistics and economics of residential care in the mid-20th century,
    • the culture and role of singing and celebration in living communities,
    • photographs of Welsh mining communities in the 1930s,
    • changing perceptions and theory in therapeutic work ince 1860
    • or anything outside or in-between.

Parking: There is plenty of convenient, on-site parking.

Food and drinks: Bring your own, or go to a nearby pub to eat. Take advantage of our onsite coffee and tea (free, but donations are welcome). Food and drinks aren't allowed in the Archive as such, but there are plenty of spaces indoors and out for eating and relaxing.

Bring pencils, because pens aren't permitted around archives.

Read the Rules for Researchers, and if you are thinking of consulting potentially sensitive or confidential items, read the Additional Rules for Sensitive and Confidential Material there. 

Disabled Access: Barns Centre as a whole has good disabled access, with special facilities for disabled visitors in the accommodation building.

In the Reading Room:

  • There are tables, desks and comfortable chairs.
  • Wi-Fi access.
  • Electrical outlets, and even computers if you need one - but feel free to bring your own laptop or tablet.
  • We ask that mobile phones not be used in the Archive, and photography is not generally permitted unless explicitly agreed with the archivist. Personal scanners are not allowed.
  • There are no photocopying facilities, but archive staff can scan agreed material by arrangement, donations towards the cost of which are welcome.
  • Equipment to view and/or listen to audio/visual material is available by prior arrangement.

Staying onsite

Barns Centre has its own on-site accommodation, making it possible for students and researchers to come for several days or weeks if they wish, maximising research and study time. With enough warning, the Archivist can sometimes provide extended opening hours. For details of overnight accommodation and its availabillity and cost, please contact the Conference and Accommodation Administrator.

For overnight visitors, there are self-catering facilities within the accommodation, and various pubs and shops within a short car or cycle ride, with a local village shop and a pub about twenty minutes away by foot. 

Costs and Charges

The Planned Environment Therapy Trust does not currently charge students and other non-commercial and non-broadcast users to consult archive, library and oral history materials. But we are a charity, and we do welcome help, and encourage anyone who can do so to consider a donation or offering support in other ways (through volunteering, for example). The costs of an archive service are considerable, and have to be met in some way.

There are charges for scanning and any other reproduction costs.

Arranging a visit 

To arrange a visit, contact the Archivist by phone at 01242 620125, or by email, using the contact form. A map, with details of public transport, are available here.

The more information you can give on what you're looking for, what you're interested in, and/or what you're hoping to find, the more we are likely we will be to be able to help you.