In addition to working with academics, archivists, curators, librarians and those in the heritage industry, the CHR liaises with organisations such as the Historical Association and other professional bodies working within the broad field of public history. It also provides resources and services to teachers, the wider public and local communities. The CHR welcomes local volunteers, and anyone with an interest in British social, local and family history.
The Centre for Historical Record will build on the considerable success of the Centre for Local History Studies (CLHS), through projects such as the Historic Hospitals Admission Records Project. It is extending current links with Kingston and Surrey county archives to include other archives and museums, especially in and around the London area.
In addition the centre functions as a forum for discussion among educational institutions, museums and archives. It will therefore combine the proven expertise of the CLHS with a wider focus on research collaboration, educational provision and knowledge transfer. Focusing initially on its existing strengths, in medical history and the social history of medicine, the Centre aims to expand the focus of its research and digitisation projects to encompass historical records used in other fields, including law, crime, gender, business, politics and human rights.
The CHR is situated in Holmwood House on the Penrhyn Road campus and functions as part of Kingston University's politics and history departments. This location places the centre within a very short distance of the National Archives and other major London museums and repositories. This makes it an ideally placed hub for professional and public researchers, archivists, curators, and all those interested in the historical record.