§ Mr. Dalyell
asked the Attorney-General if the Lord Chancellor gives any guidance to Departments about the periods of time for which they may request the temporary return of files selected for permanent preservation in the Public Record Office for official use; if the Lord Chancellor gives any guidance as to the criteria to be used in deciding whether to request such temporary returns; and if he will make a statement.
§ The Attorney-General
The Lord Chancellor recently instructed that improved procedures should be introduced for reminding Departments to send back to the Public Record Office documents temporarily returned to them under section 4(6) of the Public Records Act 1958. No, guidance has been issued to Departments on the criteria to be used in deciding whether to request temporary returns. Records are frequently required for current departmental use because they comprise the historical archives of departments.