Family Research – English, Scottish and Irish Genealogy


Archives and Records Management Service

The Archives and Records Management Service is responsible for the care and preservation of the Archives and Records of West Lothian Council and its predecessor authorities. The Archives look after a range of collections covering a variety of subjects relating to the government , people and culture of West Lothian and its inhabitants.
The Archives welcomes deposits of private records related to the area, its people, its businesses and its development. The Archives can also give advice on the storage and preservation of archives. It cannot however provide valuations for archives held in private ownership.

The largest single collection is Livingston Development Corporation. The minutes, plans and photographs are available for research use. However, some records remain closed for reasons of commercial confidentiality. A list of the collections held by the archives service and the local history library has been complied by the Scottish Archive Network. This is a lottery funded project which aims to put information about the collections held by Scottish archives on the internet, along with a knowledge base about the history of Scotland, digitised copies of Scottish wills and testaments and exhibitions.

The Archives does not have records which will help with the initial stages of genealogical research. Enquiries should be made to the Local History Library or General Register Office.

General enquiries relating to the history of West Lothian should be made to the Local History Library

Assistance can be given on projects for both school and further education, particularly those relating to the Livingston area. The National Archives of Scotland also has an education officer who may also be able to provide assistance by emailing

The Scottish Cultural Resource Network is a collaborative project involving archives, museums and libraries to provide interactive CD-ROMS for education.

Most of the West Lothian archives collections are held by the National Archives of Scotland, General Register House, Edinburgh. These include Linlithgow Burgh archives, Linlithgow Sheriff Court, church records, personal and business collections. The National Library of Scotland also holds some estate records. A list of what is held in private collections is also available from the National Register of Archives.


Ms Jennifer Tait
Archivist/Records Manager
9 Dunlop Square
Deans Industrial Estate
EH54 8SB

email Jennifer Tait

Hours: 9am – 5pm (Monday-Thursday), 9am – 4pm (Fridays)

Visits: By appointment only

Phone : 01506 773770
Fax : 01506 773775

Charges : Access to the archives is free, but there are charges for photocopies and any complicated enquiries. Further information is available on request. At least 24 hours notice must be given for photocopies of documents over A3 size.

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