Archives Service

The BAS Archives Service holds records created by BAS and its predecessors, Operation Tabarin and the Falkland Islands Dependencies Survey (FIDS), that relate to all activities, both scientific and administrative. We acquire records donated by former members of staff, as well as records for organisations closely related to BAS, which are held on long-term loan. A database of the artefacts at British historic sites in the Antarctic is maintained by the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust. Records produced by other Antarctic expeditions are held by repositories such as the Scott Polar Research Institute.

The records held by the Archives Service relate both to scientific activities and administrative and logistical operations in the Antarctic and Arctic. Together they provide a unique source of scientific polar data and information about organising and undertaking world-class research in a remote and hostile environment.

The Archives Service was first established by BAS in 1979 and since 1988 its holdings have been housed in purpose-built accommodation at the BAS Cambridge site. The Archives have ‘place of deposit’ status assigned by The National Archives, requiring the service to meet Government standards for storage and access.

Ieuan and Alysa looking through the valuable film archives in the controlled environment in the archive at BAS Cambridge
Ieuan and Alysa looking through the valuable film archives in the controlled environment in the archive at BAS Cambridge

Members of the public are welcome to visit the Archives by appointment. The office is accessible to wheelchair users.

Opening hours:

Monday – Friday: 09.30 – 13:00 and 14:00 – 17:00, by appointment only.

Contacting us:

You can contact us using the details on the Contact Us page. Please address post to ‘The Archives Service’.

Emailed enquiries can also be made to


Ieuan Hopkins

Archives Records and Information Compliance Manager


Alysa Fisher

Information Officer


Alex Tataran

Archivist and Records Officer

British Antarctic Survey celebrates its 75th birthday

4 February, 2019

February 2019 marks the 75th anniversary of the origins of British Antarctic Survey, which began when the secret wartime mission “Operation Tabarin” arrived in Antarctica and set up base. This was the start of a permanent UK scientific presence in Antarctica.

Captain Malcolm Phelps, 1928 – 2017

10 April, 2017

APRIL 2017.  It is with deep sadness that we report that Captain Malcolm Phelps, formerly of the RRS John Biscoe,  passed away on Saturday 8th April 2017 after a long …

NEWS STORY: Antarctic memories online

10 December, 2015

The British Antarctic Oral History Project is the result of a collaboration between the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), BAS Club, UK Antarctic Heritage Trust (UKAHT), and Scott Polar Research Institute …