British Newspaper Archive

Explore 300 years of history through local, regional and national newspapers from the British Library's unique collection

British Newspaper Archive screenshot

Available to UK Public Libraries through JCS.

Offering online access to millions of pages of British and Irish newspapers from 1703-2003, the British Newspaper Archive is a fantastic resource for everyone interested in history, and for family and local historians in particular.

Every single word of every issue has been made searchable, and thousands of extra pages are added every week.

"I’m actually addicted to The British Newspaper Archive. I wake up in the middle of the night wondering… did the Victorians ever roller skate? What did people think about Nelson’s column when it was first unveiled? Has anyone ever attempted a tightrope walk over the Thames?

A quick search, and I get my answers. Except then I can’t possibly go back to sleep because one search leads to another. If you’re curious about the past, then The British Newspaper Archive is your best friend for life.” Matt Brown, Editor-at-Large of Londonist 

Download information sheet 

Over 22.5 million newspaper pages to explore...

The British Newspaper Archive was launched in 2011 as a partnership between the British Library and family history website Findmypast, a complementary resource also available through JCS.

Newspapers from the British Library’s vast collection are scanned every day, producing digital copies that can be searched from anywhere in the world.

The online archive grows by more than 100,000 pages every month and currently includes:

  • 870,000 newspapers from the Victorian period
  • 56,000 newspapers printed during the First World War
  • 41,000 newspapers printed during the Second World War
  • Publications from England, Northern Ireland, the Republic of Ireland, Scotland and Wales

A treasure trove of information...

The British Newspaper Archive is fully searchable, so library members can enter the names of historical events, people, places or organisations and instantly find matching articles. The results can then be refined by date, location or article type.

There's no limit to what you can discover. Historical newspapers contain a wide variety of information, including:

  • Original reports about historical events
  • Births, marriages, deaths and obituaries
  • Local court reports and criminal trials
  • Sports scores
  • Advertisements
  • lllustrations and cartoons

A choice of "seat-based' or unlimited simultaneous user subscription packages...

  • Seat-based" pricing (5 or 10 seats) is now available in addition to unlimited simultaneous user pricing.
  • Save 15% if you subscribe at the same time, and on an unlimited simultaneous user basis, to both the British Newspaper Archive and Findmypast.

View sample pages...

Register for a free account on the British Newspaper Archive website here.


Pricing is based on your library authority’s population coverage. Discounts available for purchasing with Findmypast. Please contact us, or login to your My JCS account for a quotation.