Dorset History Centre

The Dorset History Centre is dedicated to preserving and sharing the heritage of Dorset.

The Dorset History may be able to support your local history project.

 If you have an item of interest that you’d like to donate, we’d love to hear from you.  Please email

Bournemouth collections

In two centuries Bournemouth has grown from a few scattered dwellings to a major town and seaside resort. The importance of tourism is reflected in our collections, including records of several hotels,  postcards and tourist guides. The archives of Bournemouth schools, churches and local business are also held at the History Centre and historical records of Bournemouth Borough.

Many records, including parish registers, electoral registers and wills, are available from the family history website Ancestry. You can access this website from home (a chargeable service) or access and download records for free in Bournemouth libraries or the Dorset History Centre.