Quick Search

Quick search searches for words in the Title and Description fields of the catalogue.

Where more than one word is entered the default is AND search.

Railway Station

searches Title and Description for the words Railway and Station i.e. not necessarily next to each other.

To search for an exact phrase surround it with inverted commas

“Railway Station”

Searches for the words Railway and Station next to each other, in that order and separated by a space.

+represents Boolean AND meaning that the catalogue entry must include this word
-represents the Boolean NOT meaning that the catalogue entry must not include this word
|represents the Boolean OR meaning that the catalogue entry includes one or more of these words but not necessarily all of them.

Place one of these symbols in front of a word to apply it. If no symbol is used AND is assumed.

Railway –Station

Searches for Railway and excludes any catalogue entries containing Station.

Typing a field name followed by a colon then a search term means that only that field will be searched.

Title:Railway Station

Searches for Railway in the Title and Station in Title or Description. Put inverted commas around the words to search for them as a phrase.

Advanced Search

Unlike quick searches advanced searches do not require you to enter command syntax such as the Boolean symbols. Instead follow the on-screen annotations next to and inside the entry box.

By default the Advanced Search looks for all the words that you have entered. To change this click on Refine Search Criteria and choose one of the options

  • With all the words
  • With at least one of the words
  • Without the words

Any Text -Use this field to search across the text fields in the catalogue. You can enter any text here just as you would in a search engine such as Google.

Title - Use this field to search the Title field. This should give you more specific results than the any text field but is mainly useful where the item has a specific title such as a report or book.

Date - As well as an individual date the following formats can be searched

ranges 1951 - 1967

earlier than <1872

Later than >1923

Approximate dates "1920s" or "nineteenth century" or "late twentieth century" or "early twentieth century" or "mid1800s"

Images - If you want to just search for images select drawing/painting, maps/plans, lithographs/prints or photographs from the Category field.

Structure of Results
Our archives are catalogued hierarchically which means that the collection is divided into sections, subsections, series, subseries and items. When viewing search results it may be useful to see them in their hierarchical context. This is done by opening the full catalogue entry and then clicking on the Reference Number. From the hierarchical list you can browse records by clicking on reference numbers on the list or Reference Number in the individual record entry.