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Why we’re currently unable to accept personal requests for collection material

From September 2020, we’ve had to pause accepting personal requests to access collection material, with the exception of audio material.

This decision wasn’t taken lightly, but there are two factors that made it necessary.

One is that we had limited access to some resources during the COVID-19 Lockdown. This created a large backlog of requests that will take us a few months to work through.  

Adding to the backlog, some of our staff and resources are now needed to focus on an urgent, multi-year project to preserve large Crown collections on at-risk magnetic media. You can read more about that project here. It’s likely that we only have until 2025 to digitally preserve over 400,000 items or they’ll be lost to future generations of New Zealanders. By limiting the volume of requests we accept for a time we will be able to reduce our backlog and put the required focus on this important project.

We expect to start accepting personal requests again on 1 March 2021, but will review this intermittently. If we’re able to reduce the backlog more quickly than expected, we will reopen requests earlier. Any updates will be shared on this page. 

Video message from Ngā Taonga Tumu Whakarae Honiana Love

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