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Public Record Office

Volume 959: debated on Thursday 30 November 1978

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asked the Attorney-General under what circumstances public documents deposited at the Public Record Office for inspection and study by research workers, after the prescribed 30-year period during which they remain closed, may subsequently be withdrawn and withheld from public access.


Where documents in the Public Record Office are found to belong to a category of public records for which extended closure under the Public Records Acts 1958 and 1967 is approved, the documents are closed for an extended period. These categories are:Exceptionally sensitive papers, the disclosure of which would be contrary to the public interest, whether on security or other grounds—including the need to safeguard the revenue;Documents containing information supplied in confidence, the disclosure of which would or might constitute a breach of good faith; andDocuments containing information about individuals, the disclosure of which would cause distress or embarrassment to living persons or their immediate decentants.