Valence House local studies centre sees rise in visitors

Valence House

Valence House - Credit: Archant

Valence House’s local studies centre received 2,642 visits last year amounting to 6,110 visitor hours.

The figures released in the museum’s annual report showed an increase by a third on the previous year.

Employees working at the archives dealt with 1,577 enquiries, the public computers were used 1,045 times and the microfilm readers were requested for use 330 times.

The Barking and Dagenham Archives and Local Studies Centre opened in Valence House in April 2002 and relocated to the new Visitor Centre three years ago.

It holds a collection of written material and on the area and is used by everyone from local residents and family historians to local schools.

Linda Rhodes, local studies librarian, said: “Archives and Local Studies Centre resources were increasingly used by school groups throughout the year. The visits are run by the Heritage Education Team at Valence House. The increase in numbers is thanks to schemes supported by the Arts Council and the English Heritage designed to engage pupils with their local history.”