The Archives

Since its foundation in 1379, New College has built up a considerable archive of historical material relating to the foundation of the college, and the running of the college and its estates up to the present day.  The oldest documents date from the eleventh century, which is more than two hundred years before the College was itself founded.  The archive also houses a number of Special Collections, including personal papers donated to the College by the families of former fellows and alumni.


Researchers wishing to consult the archives should contact the Archivist, to enquire about the contents of the collections, and to make an appointment to visit:

Mrs Jennifer Thorp
New College
Holywell Street

Opening Hours

The Archives Reading Room is located in the College Library and it is open by prior appointment on most Mondays and Tuesdays, 10.00 am - 1.00 pm and 2.00 pm - 4.30 pm, except during periods of general College closure at Easter, late August, and Christmas.

Archive Facilities

No facilities exist for viewing digital copies of documents online.  However, where appropriate, a small number of photocopies or scans of documents may be provided, or researchers may take their own photographs, for personal research only and subject to signing an application form; separate arrangements exist for those researchers who wish to publish materials from the archives, and permission to publish must be obtained from the College beforehand.

Photographs of some historic Oxfordshire estate maps may be viewed on the Oxfordshire History Centre’s Picture Oxon website.  

Images of a few of the College archives can be viewed and copies purchased from:

Bridgeman Images
17-19 Garway Road
W2 4PH


College Archives

Most of the older archives of the College are described in: Francis Steer, The Archives of New College, Oxford: A Catalogue (London: Phillimore, 1974).  For information concerning papers accrued since 1974, please contact the Archivist.  All documents relating to individual members of the college are subject to the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (2018).

Special Collections

These include some of the papers of the following:

  • Hugh Percy Allen (1869-1946)
  • Gavin MA Bantock (1939-    )
  • Harry Esmond Bell (1913-1964)
  • George Leonard Cheesman (1894-1915)
  • Rev Charles Fiennes Cholmondeley (1863-c1936)
  • Arthur Hafford Cooke (1912 -1987)
  • Sir Christopher William Machell Cox (1899-1982)
  • Alfred Dewar (1876-1969)
  • Rev John Egerton (1796-1876)
  • Godfrey H Hardy (1877-1947)
  • Herbert Lionel Hart (1907-1992)
  • William Goodenough Hayter  (1906-1995)
  • Henry Ludwig Henderson (1880-1963)
  • Alan Patrick Herbert (1890-1971)
  • Harold Henry Joachim (1868-1938)
  • Horace William Brindley Joseph (1867-1943)
  • Rev Arthur Lake (1569-1626)
  • Richard Lane (1800-1872)
  • John Miles Longden (1921-1993)
  • Alfred Viscount Milner (1854-1925) but please note that most of his papers are held in the Bodleian Library
  • Reginald Owen Morris (1886-1948)
  • Herbert George Nicholas (1911-1998)
  • Rev Hastings Rashdall (1858-1924)
  • Alfred Robinson (1841-1895)
  • Gavin Viscount Simonds (1881-1971)
  • Alic Halford Smith (1883-1965)
  • Sir John Smith of Shottesbrooke (1923-2007)
  • Rev Sydney Smith (1771-1845)
  • Rev William Archibald Spooner (1844-1930)
  • Edward Charles Titchmarsh (1899-1963)
  • Sir Leonard Woolley  (1880-1960)

Some of these collections are still being catalogued and may not be listed.  Please contact the Archivist for those that may not be fully accessible.