Archives Assistant

This job has now expired
Lambeth Palace Library, 15 Lambeth Palace Rd, London
£27,289 per year

Our aim is for everyone in the National Church Institutions (NCIs) to feel that they belong, and are valued for who they are and what they contribute. Together, our people contribute in different ways towards our common purpose, whichever NCI they work in and whatever their background.

Lambeth Palace Library, founded in 1610, is the historic library and record office of the Archbishop of Canterbury. Following the merger with the Church of England Record Centre in 2020, it is now the principal repository for the archives not only of the Archbishop of Canterbury, but also of the National Church Institutions in London. It is freely open for public use, serving as a research centre specialising in ecclesiastical history, but with far wider-ranging archive, manuscript and printed collections, dating from the 9th century to the present day and encompassing everything from medieval manuscripts and early printed books through to modern archives and digital records.

The Library's vision is to collect, preserve and make accessible the memory of the Church of England, so that its cultural and religious history can be explored and enjoyed by all.

Further details may be found on the Library’s website:

This is an excellent opportunity to join Lambeth Palace Library, the National Library and Archive of the Church of England.

We are looking for two Archives Assistants who are enthusiastic about archive and library collections, to join us at Lambeth Palace Library.

You will support the vision and mission of the library by engaging with readers and researchers to promote the use of the collections through assisting in the running of the Reading Room on a rota basis. You will also answer queries and assistwith creating catalogue records for the library’s online catalogue, using CALM for Archives software.

You should have good IT and data entry skills, with experience of using Microsoft Office and the ability to communicate effectively both verbally and in writing. With experience of working in a public service environment, you will deal politely, confidently, and efficiently with our customers, supporting the library’s vision to be accessible.

Normal hours of work are 35 per week, Monday to Friday with an hour’s unpaid break for lunch. The Reading Room remains open late one evening per week (currently Thursday), which will require the postholder to work periodically on a rota basis until 7:30pm, for which hours will be adjusted accordingly.

We have two posts available due to team members accepting internal secondment opportunities:

  • Post 1 is offered on a fixed term contract for 15 months
  • Post 2 is offered on a fixed term contract for 24 months

To arrange an informal conversation about the role, please contact

Interviews will be held w/c 26th June 2023.

The Church of England is for everyone, and we want to reflect the diversity of the community the Church serves across the whole country. Therefore, while of course we welcome all applications from interested and suitably experienced people, we would particularly welcome applicants from UK Minority Ethnic Backgrounds and disabled people.

We offer a unique environment with opportunities for continuous learning, generous annual leave for work life balance, season ticket loans and a range of benefits including discounted entry to attractions and what we feel is a market leading package when it comes to our pension scheme.

The Role

  • Engaging with readers and researchers, including both internal and external users, to promote the use of the collections, through assisting in the running of the Reading Room on a rota basis, including document production and other related duties.
  • Answering enquiries and advising readers and researchers on sources in the Library and in other collections; providing copies of material, principally in digital formats.
  • Creating catalogue records using CALM for Archives software, for web delivery via the Library’s online catalogue.
  • Assisting with preservation work (e.g. re-packaging).
  • Participating in, and where necessary delivering, role appropriate outreach and engagement activities to support the Library’s vision to be accessible to all, such as writing blogs or contributing to work on exhibitions.
  • Improving collections knowledge through regular continuing professional development activities.
  • Working with colleagues to ensure the security and safe use of the collections.

The Requirements


  • Good IT and keyboard skills, including Microsoft Office.
  • Good oral and written communication skills.
  • An interest in, and enthusiasm for, archive and library collections.


  • Experience of working in a public service environment.
  • An understanding of how user services operate within archives and libraries.
  • Familiarity with archive management systems, preferably CALM for Archives.

Personal Attributes:

  • Good interpersonal skills and the ability to deal politely, confidently, and efficiently with internal and external users.
  • Ability to process requests for information efficiently by conducting appropriate research.
  • Ability to work unsupervised and as a member of a team.
  • Ability to organise own work and prioritise duties.
  • Ability to work under pressure and to meet deadlines.
  • Ability to work methodically and accurately showing attention to detail.
  • Ability to work to agreed standards.


  • Ability to handle items in diverse formats and conditions as necessary to the role in accordance with procedures relating to manual handling and working at height.



  • Knowledge of British history, with an interest in ecclesiastical history.

In the National Church Institutions (NCIs), we support the mission and ministries of the Church of England. We work with parishes, dioceses, schools, chaplaincies and other ministries, and with national and international partners including mission agencies, and other denominations and faith groups.-.

Find out more about working for the National Church Institutions by visiting Careers | The Church of England

NCI values

  • We strive for excellence
  • We collaborate
  • We act with integrity
  • We show compassion
  • We respect others

We welcome everyone and we accept and value people for who they are and what they contribute, treating others in the way we would wish to be treated ourselves. We actively listen to and include others, encouraging and enabling everyone’s voice to be heard in discussions and decisions. When we disagree, we aim to disagree well with respect and kindness.

We want to encourage applications from a diverse group of people. Even if you have never thought about working for us before, if you have the skills and experience we’re looking for then we would like to hear from you. If there is anything we can do to support you in your application please get in touch via email to

  • As a Disability Confident Leader, we actively look to attract, recruit and retain those of you who are disabled.
  • We are a member of the Armed Forces Covenant, and welcome applications from those of you who have served in our Armed Forces and their families.