How to Use the Archive

Three ways to find documents

The archive is organised as a number of individual archival collections of documents. Some may be available through our online catalogue, while others may be accessed only by attending our archive in person. Outlined below are ways to find the documents that you require.

1. Search the online Catalogue

2. Personal Enquiries


3. Postal / Email Enquiries


1. Search the online catalogue

Access our online catalogue

Use our online catalogue to determine whether the required file is available online.

1)  Document available online

If the file/documents are online, you can proceed with your research at home.

2)  Document not available online

If the subject of your search is not currently online, please make a note of the archival file reference number. You can then proceed to make an appointment in the reading room or to submit a postal/email enquiry.  The same applies if you cannot identify exactly what you are looking for. For details see the sections below.

2. Personal enquiries at the Institute

Book an appointment

If you cannot find the documents that you are looking for online, or you wish to come and use the Archive Reading Room in person, you must Book an Appointment in advance, using the link below. Please be aware that the number of available spaces is limited.

Unfortunately we are unable to cater for persons who have not booked an appointment in advance.

Complete and sign an Application form

When making an appointment to visit our Reading Room you will have to complete, print and sign a copy of the Application for Persons Wishing to Use the Archives. You will need to bring it with you when attending.

To see the Application form click here.

Sign Rules and Regulations form

You will also have to complete, print, sign and bring with you a copy of the Rules and Regulations form.

To see the Rules and Regulations form click here.

Check our Fees and Charges

Before coming to the Institute please familiarise yourself with the list of Fees and Charges.

To see our fees and charges list click here.

3. Postal / Email enquiries

Research by PISM Staff

If you cannot find the documents you require online, or you are unable to come to the Institute in person, you can request our highly experienced staff to carry out a limited search for you. You can email your enquiry or send it by post. Alternatively, you can fill in an electronic form via the button below.


All postal/email archival enquiries for research to be carried out by PISM staff will be charged at £50, for up to a maximum of two hours per enquiry, with no guarantee of success, plus postal and document copying charges (as detailed in our Fees and Charges document). No work will be carried out without prior written agreement to cover the indicated fees.


Please note that postal/email enquiries can take up to 6 months to be processed.

Support Us

The Polish Institute and Sikorski Museum is a registered charity (no. 312168) and other than funds that we generate through our activities, we are totally reliant on membership, donations and legacies to enable us to carry on with our work.