About Us

Who is NORAH?

NORAH is our affectionate name for, and is taken from, the charity’s official name of the Norfolk Archives and Heritage Development Foundation. It also alludes to the fact that millions of people’s names are contained in Norfolk’s archives, waiting for us to discover their stories.

NORAH was established at the instigation of the Norfolk Record Office (NRO) in 2016, with the initial aim of raising money to help buy archives at an auction of a private manuscript collection. Despite its origins, NORAH is independent from the NRO, from whom it receives administrative and office support. NORAH has its own constitution and trustees.

NORAH’s Aims

NORAH’s overarching aim is to advance our collective knowledge of Norfolk’s past, as evidenced in archives. It defines archives as rare printed items or unique records created by individuals or organisations as part of their day-to-day activity, which are worthy of permanent preservation. It does this by supporting the buying, preservation and processing of Norfolk’s archives so they can be discovered and accessed by the public.

NORAH also supports projects and activities which engage different audiences with Norfolk’s archives. It wants as many people as possible to share the thrill of archival research and be inspired by the stories they tell. To this end, NORAH maintains a register of speakers and talks, on various aspects of Norfolk’s history and based on archival research. It also holds events for members of the Norfolk Archives Supporter Scheme, which it maintains.

Who Does NORAH Support?

NORAH does not collect or preserve any records itself. Instead, it raises funds, and distributes them to support the NRO, and other organisations who do the preserving and provision of access. Previous beneficiaries, in addition to the NRO, include Girlguiding Norfolk’s Archive Resource Centre and the Norfolk Heritage Centre. If your organisation is considering applying to NORAH for funding, please contact us. We’d love to hear about your plans.

The Legal Bit

NORAH is a Foundation Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO). It is registered with the Charity Commission under reference number 1167279.