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Archive & Research Centre

The National Museum of the Royal Navy aims to enable individuals to research. We are unfortunately unable to complete research on the behalf of enquirers. Please ensure that you have looked through our Information Bank before submitting an enquiry.

Some photographic material from the NMRN collections is available to order from the Print on Demand catalogue.

Please note the Museum does not hold official service records within our collections, but we do hold some additional personnel records:


NMRN Records Held at Fleet Air Arm Museum, Yeovilton

RN and RNVR Ratings Engagement and Enrolment Papers 1888 to 1923:

There are significant gaps, notably the Royal Naval Air Service, for which most of the Engagement Papers were destroyed. The records include papers for the following ratings:
Continuous Service (CS); Non-Continuous Service (NCS); Special Service (SS); Seamen, Stokers; Artificers; Artisans; Ship’s Police; Sick Berth Attendants; Mine Clearance Service (MCS).

Royal Marine Attestation Packs:

Approximately 60,000 of these are held within the date range 1850 to 1923. Others can be found at the National Archives. The records include: RMLI (Plymouth, Chatham & Portsmouth Divisions) Continuous Service (CS) & Short Service (SS); RMA CS & SS; RND (Divisional Engineers, Divisional Train, RM Medical Unit, Ordnance Company) Deal Short Service; RMB - Royal Naval School of Music; RM Labour Corps (New Formation) Short Service.

Royal Naval Reserve Ratings:

Original service cards (approx. A3 size) for 140,000 ratings. These relate to people who earned their living by seafaring but were also members of the RN Reserve, to be called up in case of hostilities.

Royal Naval Division:

Original service cards (approx. A5 size) for 50,000 RND officers and men.


Please note that the Museum does not accept enquiries in person or over the telephone.

If you are looking to make a research appointment the Museum requires a minimum of two weeks' notice in advance of an intended visit. Preferred appointment times cannot be guaranteed and general Museum admission will be charged. You must have a confirmed appointment in order to visit the library and archive, or to speak to a member of the Archives Collections Team.

If you are looking to make a donation to the collection please include digital photographs or scans of items where possible.

Please allow at least one month for a response to your enquiry. Enquiries are dealt with free of charge but donations towards supporting our work are appreciated OR

Archive Department
Fleet Air Arm Museum
RNAS Yeovilton
BA22 8HT

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