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The Internet Archive

The Internet Archive

National Coal Board photograph. Cat ref: COAL 80/673

UK Government Web Archive


The UK Government Web Archive is a selective collection of UK Government websites developed by the National Archives. It was launched in September 2003.

The main collection is archived at regular intervals using the services of the European Archive. The European Archive is a non-profit foundation working towards universal access to all knowledge.

We also collect a growing selection of websites through the UK Web Archiving Consortium. These are websites of topical interest, which may be added to at any time.

Over half of all interaction between the UK government and the public is now carried out online. For example, the Hutton Inquiry website had huge impact, documenting every stage of the investigation into the tragic death of Dr David Kelly, and making the findings available online. It is essential that this historic online information be preserved for future generations.

The UK Government Web Archive collects and preserves over 80 government websites. The majority of the sites are being collected as weekly or 6-monthly snapshots, using a specially-modified version of the European Archive´s web crawler. In addition, a growing selection is collected via the UK Web Archiving Consortium. The complete archive is freely available on the Internet and in The National Archives' public search rooms and cyber café.

Early archived websites were collected using experimental technology. The archiving software often collected the top-level pages of a website only, usually without images. This can mean that older archived websites in the collection do not display as expected, and have basic functionality.

For further information about the UK Government Web Archive, please read the frequently asked questions.

For technical information about linking to websites within this collection from your own website, please read these notes for Webmasters.