Historic Environment Record
What is the Historic Environment Record?
The Historic Environment Record (HER) is the county of
Worcestershire's primary source for archaeological and historic
environment information. We hold approximately 26,000 records on
all aspects of Worcestershire's archaeology and historic
environment, including archaeological sites, historic buildings,
monuments and landscape features. The HER can help you to
- Your area, whether that be a village, a particular building or
- A particular period of interest, including Roman, medieval,
World War II.
- Industries such as lime kilns, carpet factories, needle
- Artefact types such as coins, pottery, plant and animal
There is a wealth of information available, whether you are a
member of the public, a student, or a professional
The best starting place is to book an appointment with an HER
member of staff. We will then be able to fully understand your
research question(s) and can assist you by providing an HER report
of all the records that you may be interested in, along with
location and historical mapping.
If you want to get your search started straight away then parts
of the HER database are available to search online through the
Heritage gateway. Please
note that a full search of the records can only be conducted in
branch. The full database must be consulted for all commercial
For more information, to begin a search or to book an
appointment, please contact us.
Further details and charges
For more details of the information we provide as part of an HER
search, along with our current charges, please see our HER Search Guidance document (PDF
Searches requested for academic or private research are free.
However, there is a charge for commercial enquiries. We
provide information in both paper and digital formats. We
also have a number of existing projects detailed online, which may help
you in your own research; along with a number of resources and
publications that can be used by themselves or in conjunction
with the results of an HER search.
Check our guide to see
how you can use these resources together.
Further resources available online
We have a number of online resources that may help you to extend
your research a bit further:
- Online Archaeology Library
An online library containing over 1500 archaeological reports that
you can download and read.
- Tithe and Inclosure Maps Website
historic mapping of the county in the early 19th century.
- Worcestershire Online
professional tool that allows the user
to identify ceramics from archaeological excavations
Descriptions of the thirteen historic towns
in the county, based on a survey carried out by the Worcestershire
Historic Environment and Archaeological Service.
- Worcestershire in the Past
A series of downloadable PDFs describing specific periods in
Worcestershire's past, such as the English Civil War and the
Defence of Worcestershire in the Second World War.
Now I have a HER report, what more can I do?
There are several resources you can make use of, both within The
Hive and online at home:
- HER Sources and Aerial Photographs – these are situated in the
Archaeology public office in the filing cabinets and on the
shelves. The sources are filed under their SWR number, which is the
unique number given to every document referenced in the HER. You
can find a document's SWR number in the bibliographic section of
the HER report provided.
- Tithe, Inclosure and Estate Maps – these are situated in the
two vertical map cabinets in the Archaeology public office. The
maps are filed alphabetically by parish/estate name. The majority
of the maps are hand transcriptions copied at a scale of
- Archaeology Reference Library – this is situated just outside
the Archaeology office on level 2 at The Hive. There is a wide
range of books, covering many aspects of local, national and
- Online Archaeology Library (OAL) - Here you
will find access to archaeological reports that are the result of
the planning process (grey literature) and will give details of
excavations, fieldwalking, building recording and much more
archaeological work. You can search for reports using the SWR
numbers mentioned above; also you may choose to use the WSM number,
which is the site specific number that you will find in the HER
report. The search engine on the site also allows for keyword
searches on title and authors.
- Sources Module – This is similar to the OAL above, however it
is only accessible on the public computers in The Hive. We will be
continually adding to the catalogue of available documents. We are
planning to include Defence of Britain field report forms,
newspaper cuttings, archaeological newsletters, aerial photographs
and much, much more.
- Heritage Gateway – English Heritage have created an online
portal so that users can search many HERs (and other national
datasets) all at once. This is a particularly useful tool for
having an initial look at what the HER may hold. The web address is
Please see our guide to using the Heritage Gateway for further
I have completed my research/project, are you
Yes! One of the main ways the HER is updated and maintained is
by people informing us of their discoveries, memories or points of
interest. The minimum information that we would usually require is
a location (a cross on a map is adequate); some information
regarding what the project was or how the discovery was made and
any photographs or reports available that we can add as
By letting us know what you have found we can enhance our
database to help inform future enquirers and therefore continue to
protect the County's historic environment.
This page was last reviewed 14 June 2013 at 16:10.
The page is next due for review 11 December 2014.