National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Disabled Access and Facilities

Disabled Access and Facilities

Wheelchair symbol                 Hearing induction loop symbol                 Disabled parking-space symbol

This guide covers:

Disabled Access to Our Search Rooms and Visitor Facilities

The disabled entrances to General Register House and New Register House are accessed from the Archivists' Garden. They are shown on our location map and by external signage.

The ScotlandsPeople Centre's search rooms and our visitor facilities are on the ground floor of both buildings. The Historical Search Room and Legal Search Room are on the first floor of General Register House.

  • to go to the Dundas Room, cafe or Dome Seminar Facility use the ramped entrance (a one in 12 gradient) from the Archivists' Garden which leads to an automatic door on the east side of New Register House.
  • to go to the Reid Room use the ramped entrance from the Archivists' Garden to the west side of General Register House where the ‘push pad’ activated door takes you to the corridor to the north of the Reid Room
  • to go to the Historical Search Room or Legal Search Room use the ramped entrance from the Archivists' Garden to the west side of General Register House where the ‘push pad’ activated door takes you to the corridor to the north of the Reid Room and a member of staff will guide you to the Reid Stair or to the lift. In the event of an emergency you will be taken to a place of safety. Contact will be maintained by phone or by a member of staff staying with you until the fire brigade arrives.

If you feel that you will require assistance then we recommend that you bring a friend or helper along too.

Helpers are admitted free of charge to the ScotlandsPeople Centre and are given a second seat at the terminal beside the disabled person.

Helpers have to be issued with a reader's ticket if accompanying a disabled person who is using the archives in the Historical Search Room. Please read our guidance on how to obtain a reader's ticket before you visit.

Disabled persons may be required to provide evidence of their disabled status. 

Guide dogs

Guide and assistance dogs are welcome. We are committed to supporting access to our collections for people with sight loss and will make reasonable adjustments to assist. It would be helpful if you would let us know in advance of your visit in order to help us to help you.


The disabled toilets in General Register House are located between the shop and the Adam Dome.

The disabled toilets in New Register House are located next to the cafe.

Computer screens, keyboards and visual aids

The ScotlandsPeople Centre provides:

  • two screens in every search room with software installed which allows the monitor to take on a "negative appearance" -  please let us know of your requirements before your visit so the correct seat can be made available
  • text size can be enlarged on all computers
  • large print keyboards are available upon request.

The Historical Search Room will provide a large print keyboard or a magnifying glass on request.  The microfilm readers there can magnify images between 10 to 24 times the original size.

Adjustable seats

There are four height-adjustable tables suitable for people who use wheelchairs or walking aids in the ScotlandsPeople Centre search rooms and two in the Historical Search Room. If you require one of these please let us know in advance.

Microfilm readers in the Historical Search Room are not on height-adjustable tables.  If you think you will require the use of a microfilm reader please contact us in advance of a visit and we will arrange for a reader to be moved to an adjustable table.

All enquiry desks and counters are designed for wheelchair users.

Induction Loops

Induction loops have been installed at all enquiry desks and counters as well as the New Register House Dome Seminar Facility and its meeting rooms.


There are two disabled parking bays in the court-yard in front of New Register House. Please phone 0131 314 4457 or email in advance to book a space. Please provide your name, car registration number, model and colour of car, your expected arrival time and duration of visit.

Please note that these car parking spaces can only be used between the hours of 08:45 and 17:00 and that your disabled badge must be displayed in the car at all times.

There are two further disabled parking bays nearby in West Register Street.