Barts Health NHS Trust Archives

St Bartholomew’s Hospital, London EC1A 7BE 

By appointment, Tuesday-Friday 9:30am – 4pm

The archives searchroom is fully accessible 


Trust Archivist; Deputy Trust Archivist; Archivist, Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, Queen Mary University of London 

Our building

We are located in the Kenton and Lucas block at St Bartholomew’s Hospital, in a space that once formed part of the hospital’s casualty department, built in 1842! 

What you’ll find!

What we collect

The archives cared for by Barts Health are amongst the largest and most important hospital collections in the UK, with records filling over 2.5km of shelving. We hold records dating from 1137, shortly after the foundation of our oldest hospital, St Bartholomew’s, to the current day. They include records relating to staff, patients, buildings and management of the hospitals in the current Barts Health group, as well as numerous other hospitals, institutions, charities, organisations and individuals relating to health care and training in the City and East London. The majority of this material is normally available for research, though some more recent material may be restricted under the Data Protection Act. 

You can find a full list of archive collections, with links through to the online catalogue, here. 

View the locations of the hospitals for which we hold records and click through to our catalogue using our interactive map:

We also hold significant object collections, ranging from historic medical instruments and equipment, to sports trophies and uniforms, as well as paintings and sculptures, which can be searched on Art UK, as well as on our catalogue.   

Most Unusual Item

There are so many surprising records and objects in our collections, it’s very difficult to pick one! But we’ve picked this pistol, as a pretty unexpected item to find in a hospital collection! For centuries, St Bartholomew’s Hospital owned significant estates across London and beyond, using the rental income to support the work of the hospital. Rents from the property owned by the hospital were collected by an official known as the renter, and this is one of a pair of ‘holster pistols’ which were carried by the renter for protection when collecting cash from tenants.    

One of a pair of pistols once carried by the St Bartholomew’s Hospital Renter 

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