At Ardington Archives LLP we understand that the intricacies of document storage, and its associated services, can be daunting.  Below is a list of Document Storage FAQ’s designed to help answer any immediate queries.  Should you have a question not listed here, please feel free to contact us directly.

What are the key benefits of archive storage?

Key benefits of archiving off-site include protecting valuable business assets, managing risk and addressing information protection issues, responding to a lack of office space for other usage, and to distinguish between the operational records kept on-site and the historical archive held in store. Why Archive? gives further details on how document storage can save you time and money.

How would a service to us be costed?

Each part of our service is individually costed, meaning that on a monthly basis we charge for:

  • Sale of flatpack archive boxes
  • Collection of newly deposited boxes
  • Set up charges
  • Physical retrievals
  • Digital retrievals
  • Storage for new boxes deposited to the end of the quarter

Ongoing storage of boxes is invoiced quarterly in advance.

Where are the storage depots?

All Ardington Archives LLP storage facilities are located across one site, based in Oxfordshire.

How do you manage the boxes in your care?

Boxes are stacked on racking, and allocated a space when first brought into stores. Each box is given a unique Identification Number which allows us to trace the movement of the box from initial collection through to the box’s end of life.  This information is kept in both hard copy format and on our computerised tracking program, allowing us to monitor the location of each box by storage area, aisle reference and storage bin location.

How quickly can I get boxes returned to me if I need them?

We offer a next day retrieval service. Email your request by 12 noon to guarantee next working day retrieval. Turnaround times are guaranteed through the use of our own transport. All retrievals must be authorised by a nominated signatory.  Our Document retrieval page explains this further.

What about cataloguing support?

We provide a catalogue template with your welcome pack and can also offer full onsite training.  Additionally we can quote for providing our in house cataloguing service.

What are the arrangements for hours of working and service arrangements out of hours?

The office is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5.30pm.

Who has access to the boxes in store?

The archive stores are both secure and alarmed. They remain locked at all times. Unaccompanied access is only available to staff, all of whom are DBS checked. If clients visit to inspect the facilities a Partner  or member of management must accompany them. Part of the set up procedure is to security band each box before it is put into storage, ensuring that it cannot be easily opened and that confidentiality is maintained.

Do you supply flatpack archive boxes?

We have specially engineered boxes specifically designed for optimum document storage. All boxes are delivered flatpacked and can be ordered in multiples of 10.  Further details are available on our range of bespoke archive boxes.

What procedures do you have regarding security of the documents?

All boxes are security banded when they enter the archive store and at no time will a box be opened unless at your written request. Full confidentiality is therefore maintained throughout.  All staff are DBS checked and our facilities benefit from mechanical and electronic security systems.

Can you explain the process for requesting a file back?

We currently have two methods of returning files.  Firstly, a digital retrieval system (DRS) and secondly, we deliver the complete box back to our customers. For the digital retrieval we retrieve the file box, scan the relevant files and upload to a secure web area for our client to download when convenient. This is our preferred option as it is both environmentally conscious (keeping vans off the road) and provides a faster turnaround. However, if a client needs or prefers to receive the full box back then we offer a guaranteed next working day service (when notified by 12pm on that day).

Can we request for a box to be sent to us or undertake the retrieval of files from your premises?

Yes you can. However, we feel that it is more environmentally conscious to send files digitally via our Digital Retrieval System (DRS). Where it is necessary you can come to our premises to identify the files you need, or you can request that we send a full box back to you by courier.

Is there a minimum contract period that we would have to tie ourselves to?

There is no minimum contract period. However, archive storage is normally a long-term relationship.

Is there a length of notice required for the termination of a contract, and are there penalties associated with terminating a contract?

Clients are required to give 3 months’ notice in writing on a quarter day (linked to the invoicing).

What is the minimum number of boxes that you would accept into store?

There is no minimum number of boxes.

What measures do you have in place to deal with external threats such as fire and illegal entry?

The archive stores are fully protected against illegal entry and fire using electronic security systems.

Do you undertake confidential destruction of material and does shredding incur an extra cost?

Yes we do. We ask clients to advise us of a review date when the boxes first come into the archive store. Every quarter we write to our clients who have boxes with a review date during that quarter to ask if they would like the boxes destroyed. They can either sign the form approving destruction (this has to be completed by an authorised signatory) or give a new review date. If the boxes are to be destroyed we then remove them from storage and send them to be confidentially shredded whereby it is then pulped and recycled into tissue paper. A certificate of destruction is issued. We will also collect directly from clients any paper they would like confidentially destroyed.  Please visit our Confidential destruction page for additional information.

Do you deliver to one point or many different ones?

When we are delivering retrieved boxes to our clients we aim to deliver to the person who initiated the request, and all retrievals must be signed for. When delivering flatpacks we will deliver as per the customers’ requirements. When collecting new deposits, again we collect to the customers’ requirements. However, we do ask that boxes be stacked near to a suitable loading door with barcodes facing outwards.